Money tree is known by many names; Jade tree, Friendship tree and Lucky plant. There are around six species of plants that are referred to as money plants: Crassula ovata, Epipremnum aureum, Lunaria annua, Pilea peperomioides and Pachira aquatica. Money plant is popular as a houseplant, that also can be turned into a bonsai. These plants have thick branches, fleshy leaves and star shaped pink and white flowers. Money plant (jade plant) has green fleshy leaves, which develops a reddish edge when exposed to sun. When encouraged to bloom they develop pink and white small-sized flowers. A jade plant, one of the money trees, grows up to 6 feet in height and 3 feet wide, which makes them suitable as indoor plants.
Every species of money plant come from different places with different characteristics and appearance. These succulent plants are known to bring luck to people. The most commonly grown money plant is the Jade plant (Crassula ovata). It requires less care due to its water retaining property. The plant can very well survive if it is planted in the right soil that does not stagnate water. The following steps will give you a brief idea on how to grow a money plant properly.
Steps to Cultivate a Money Plant
A lot of precaution and care must be taken when you plant a sapling. It requires sufficient care and attention so that a money tree sapling grows into a beautiful tree. Given below are some tips to plant and grow a money plant.
- Soil provides the plants with nutrients to grow. However, a money plant is a succulent plant, that has the ability to store water in its leaves, branches and trunks. Hence, in order to grow this plant, make sure that the water flows through the soil and does not stagnate. Excessive water can cause damage to the plant. Therefore, purchase the pots that has holes in its base, so that, excessive water flows out of the soil. These trees grow well in arid or drained soil. Therefore, pebbles or gravels are used to mix with the soil to allow the water to drain quickly and help the soil to dry between watering.
- Money plants reproduce from stem cuttings. Often branches fall out from a fully grown money plant and take roots. Hence, cut off a small piece of money plant branch and plant it into the soil. Make sure that the cutting is clean and the branch at least measures 4 inches.
- Succulent plants such as the money plant requires less watering. Therefore, watering the plant once or twice a week is sufficient. Excessive sprinkling of water can cause the leaves to wrinkle and fall off. However, if the soil gets too dry then watering can be done once in two days. Regular watering can make the plant weak and damage it. Once the plant stops growing as it does in its dormancy, water it only once in two weeks.
- Money plants grow well in partial as well as full light. However, they shouldn't be directly exposed to direct light for long hours. This will cause withering of leaves and even burn them. Too much light can even rot its stems. It can grow well in partial light. However, it should be gradually exposed to full light. Two to three hours of full sunlight is sufficient for money plant. During the winters, more care must be taken as there is less sunlight and frost may kill the plant.
- Every plant must undergo through the process of pruning. It keeps the plant healthy and strong. Pruning for a money plant must be done once it grows up to a height of a foot. Unwanted branches or leaves must be removed to enhance the growth of the money plant. Pruning strengthens the stems, which enables them to support the heavy money plant leaves. Spring is the appropriate time for pruning.
- As it can be grown from its stems or leaves, money plants can be grown at any time of the year. However, summer is the best time to grow money plants.
- Money plants are known for their star shaped small flowers. To enhance flowering, do not water the plant during the frost. Avoid watering the plant for a couple of days during winter time. Dry soil and cold weather, encourages blooming.
Mealybugs, red spider mites and aphids are some of the money plant diseases from which it needs to be protected. These disease hinder the growth of the plant and damage it. In order to save the plant from any infections, spread and rub some alcohol on its leaves. The money plant suits well as an indoor plant. The ability of the plant to form a bonsai has added to the popularity of this tree.