How to care for a Pachira plant (Money Tree)

Pachira Aquatica or commonly known as Money Tree and Money Plant is a beautiful plant with a striking appearance. Pachira plants are easy to care for and quickly adapt to their environment. In China this plant is known for its supposed effect on prosperity and personal riches! Pachira plants would be gifted during the new year celebrations or as a housewarming present to wish someone well for the upcoming year. Unfortunately no real money grows on the Pachira but those large leaves make us feel rich nonetheless!

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  • Frequent
  • Smaller ones - every year
  • Moderately air purifying
  • Bright spot - no direct sunlight
  • Moderately toxic
  • Once a month during summer

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  • The Pachira's 'roots' are in South America, where it grows in wet places such as riverbanks, and can turn into trees as high as 30 meters. In the wild, there are also beautiful yellow Pachira flowers, with fruits that can replace cocoa. See where the nickname Water Cocoa comes from? The Chinese call it "Money Tree", since the leaves of the Pachira look like the five fingers of a hand grabbing luck, while the braided trunks are the treasure keepers. Now all you need to do is come up with the goods - since, you know, money doesn't grow on trees.
  • The Pachira has large leaves, which quickly makes this plant a good air purifier. This guy is not in the top ten, but certainly scores a lot better than most house plant in the air-purification department.
  • The juice of a Pachira is moderately toxic, but leaves are eaten cooked in some countries. We still don't recommend eating the leaf!
  • Although the Pachira is not a thirsty plant, it certainly likes some water now and then. Probably once every other week during the summer and once every three weeks in winter. Pachira's store water in their trunks, so there is always enough supply. Like any plant with large leaves, it does like a high humidity environment, so spray some water on the leaves every now and then. Also, as always, make sure that it does not get wet feet at the bottom of the pot.
  • If you're growing the Pachira indoors, make sure you put it in a bright spot but keep it away from direct sunlight. Anywhere close to a bright window will do.
  • Once a month, during summer, give a little extra plant food and see this house tree work wonders.
  • The younger Pachiras prefer to be in a fresh pot of soil every year. For the bigger ones (more than 1 meter in height), you only have to change the top layer. Get about 5-10 cm from the top layer of potting soil and replace that with new potting soil.
  • If the leaves of the Pachira turn yellow, it's getting too much sunlight. In that case, put it in a darker place, typically removing it from any direct sun is enough. Brown leaves are unavoidable; it's just the plant's natural process of shedding old leaves for new ones. Cut them off at the trunk and new leaves will grow. It's advisable to prune the Pachira in the fall or beginning of spring to have it retain its nice compact shape.
  • The Pachira can easily contract diseases and vermin in low humidity, so try to avoid this. If your plant contracts a disease, fight it as quickly as possible.

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