Bonsai Money Tree - Knowledgebase Question

Chicago, IL (Zone 5B)
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Question by dwyermeghan
March 8, 2007
I recently purchased a bonsai money tree, pachira aquatica, that has pebbles fused together and to the pot on top of the soil. While this is surely helping to maintain humidity, how can I tell when to water?

Answer from NGA
March 8, 2007
The braided bonsai money plant tree, also known as Pachira aquatica, is a miniature tree characterized by multiple intertwining trunks. Each tree is actually four to five separate trees with their trunks braided together. Its size varies anywhere from 10-18 inches tall. (Full-grown money plant trees can reach 7 feet tall.) The tree is topped with large, bright green leaves that form a tuft at the tip of each stem.

The braided bonsai money plant tree is usually given as a gift, as it is reputed to bring good luck. Generally, the more leaves the money tree has, the better! While it is common to find money trees with five to six leaves on each stem, it is quite rare to find one with seven leaves. Like a four-leaf clover, a money plant tree with a seven-leaf stem is considered to bring incredibly good fortune.

The braided bonsai money plant tree is also a mainstay in feng shui. Feng shui practitioners believe that the braided bonsai creates positive energy for any room that it placed in. According to this belief, you should place your money tree in the ?financial? part of your home or office. Each new leaf of the tree will then bring added financial blessing and success.

The Pachira aquatica is an easy bonsai to grow; it is ideal for indoor cultivation. Unlike other bonsai, it is quite hardy. It can thrive for many years with minimal care. It is tolerant of both low light conditions and dryness. All you will need is a little bit of soil to hold the roots. Other than that, exposure to bright light and weekly watering will be enough to make the plant thrive.

The amount of water you give your plant is critical and one common mistake that many beginning plant owners make is over watering. This can actually kill your plant! You want to be sure to water so that the soil is moist but you don?t want to put so much in so that there is standing water in the planter.

Best wishes with your new plant!

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