Guiana Chestnut: How to Take Care of a Money Tree Plant Indoors 

Have you ever wondered how to take care of a money tree plant that seems to sprout everywhere? Well, you are in good fortune, my friend! These adorable little trees are also referred to as Guiana chestnuts.

They are getting increasingly popular as indoor plants, but caring for them can be a bit tricky. Luckily, with a little touch of knowledge, you can keep your money tree healthy and thriving. So, we are here to help you.

We’ll cover everything from how to water a money tree to their light requirements, pruning techniques, and even how to grow them from a cutting. So, let’s dive in and learn all about these green gems!

What is a money tree (aka Guiana chestnut)? What does a money tree look like?

What does a money tree look like, guiana chestnut, light requirements,

Do you know the scientific name for the money tree? It is called Pachira aquatica. Don’t worry! You do not need to be a botanist to appreciate this plant!

It’s also commonly known as the Guinea chestnut plant or Malabar chestnut. This fortunate plant originated in Central and South America and has a quite exciting history.

People call it the money tree, as it’s believed to deliver luck and exact fortune, especially in feng shui practices. And if you’re looking for some variety, there are even different types of money trees, such as the Japanese and Chinese money trees.

So, what does a money tree appear like? It’s a houseplant with a twisted trunk and long, thin leaves that can grow up to a foot long.

The money tree has gorgeous blossoms that turn into fruit, which is actually edible and tastes a lot like chestnuts.

But most people grow it for its aesthetic appeal rather than its fruit. When it comes to putting your money tree, it is high-quality to preserve it in a place with vibrant, oblique mildness and to water it when the soil feels dry to the touch.

Oh, have you ever heard about the different types of money trees?

There’s the unbraided money tree, which has a single trunk, followed by the braided type, which is made of several young plants that have been twisted together. Cool, right? It could be a great way to add some natural beauty while also bringing some good luck to your space.

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Money tree plant – Guiana Chestnut Fruit. Photo by Hans Hillewaert, CC BY-SA 3.0

How big do money trees get? Money tree care outdoors

Money trees are some of my favorite indoor plants. But if you are feeling excited, you could try growing one outside. It’s always fascinating to see how your plant matures and adjusts to its new environment.

So, how big can a money tree get when grown outside? Well, it depends on a number of variables, including soil, sunlight, and water. But on average, they can grow between six and eight toes on top, which is quite wonderful, I think.

However, they can potentially reach up to 60 feet tall in their wild, natural habitat! That’s one giant money tree.

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Money tree plant (Guiana Chestnut, Pachira Aquatica) in Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, Miami. Photo by David J. Stang, CC BY-SA 4.0

Money trees can live for quite a long time too—up to 25 years or more if properly cared for. So if you want to develop a money tree outside, it is important to pick an area that offers the proper amount of daylight and coloration.

They prefer bright, indirect light and require direct sunlight at some point during the day’s freshest moments. They also pick well-tired soil that is still wet but not waterlogged.

When fully grown, a money tree can have a pretty substantial trunk, which can make it quite an impressive sight.

But don’t worry, if you prefer a smaller plant, there are mini and small-sized money trees available too. Some people even cultivate money trees as bonsai, which can be a unique and entertaining addition to any garden.

How to take care of a money tree plant indoors

how to take care of a money tree, guiana chestnut flowers, pachira aquatica,
The Flowers of Money tree, aka. Guiana chestnut, Pachira Aquatica

If you are fortunate enough to have an indoor money tree plant, you should also ensure that it is well cared for. So, let’s begin by discussing growing conditions.

Make sure they’re in bright, indirect sunlight, and water them when the top inch of soil is dry. Don’t let them sit in water or overwater.

Also, consider adding some fertilizer during the growing season to keep them healthy and happy. Remember, with a little love and attention, your money tree will thrive and bring good fortune to your home!

Guiana Chestnut: Money tree light requirements

Money trees are awesome indoor plants known for their tolerance of low-light conditions, but they still need some light to thrive.

So, do money trees need sunlight? The answer is yes, but not in direct sunlight. They prefer bright, indirect light near a window. Too little light can cause leaf drops or legginess, while too much light can scorch or dry out the leaves.

The amount of light your money tree needs can vary depending on its size and your home’s conditions.

Smaller trees can tolerate less light, while larger ones may need more. If your home is dry, your money tree may benefit from a humidifier or regular misting.

Providing the right amount of light is essential for keeping your money tree healthy and happy. With a little attention and bright, indirect light, your money tree will be a beautiful addition to your home for years to come!

How often should I water a money tree?

How to water a money tree – Guiana Chestnut care

You already know it’s a lovely plant. But do you know how frequently you should water your money tree?

Let’s have a discussion! It is critical to water your money tree because overwatering can cause root rot, and underwatering can cause the leaves to wilt and fall off. So avoid those scenarios if you want your plant to thrive.

You should water your money tree once a week during the spring and summer. However, before you do so, inspect the top inch of soil. It’s time to give it a drink if it’s dry to the touch. 

Your money tree plant (Guiana Chestnut) goes into dormancy and requires less water during the winter months. So, reduce your watering to once a week or while the soil feels dry to the touch. And if it’s colder in your house, then your plant will need even less water.

To keep away from overwatering and root rot, make certain the pot has good enough drainage holes and use a properly draining potting blend.

Also, wait until the top inch of soil feels dry before watering the plant again. Overwatering is indicated when the leaves begin to droop or turn yellow. In that case, simply reduce your watering frequency and allow the soil to dry out between waterings.

 Just remember these points, and your money tree will be a happy plant.

Potting soil for a money tree (aka. Guiana Chestnut)

If you want your money tree to thrive, you may need to make sure it’s planted in the proper sort of soil.

You should apply nicely-tired natural soil with peat moss, perlite, sand, or vermiculite.

Avoid any heavy, moist soils that may cause root rot. And bear in mind to feature a few pieces of compost or organic matter that will offer your tree some greater nutrients.

When it comes to selecting a pot, it’s vital to pick one that is barely larger than the root ball so your plant has room to grow.

Using a saucer to trap any extra water and ensuring your pot has drainage holes is also important to keep your tree healthy.

Temperature and humidity

If you are taking care of your money tree, you will have questions on your mind like, Do money trees like humidity? Or what are their temperature ranges, right? So here we go:

The perfect temperature variety for your money tree is between 65 and 80 °F (18 and 27°C); however, try to keep away from surprising changes in temperature and hold your plant far from cold drafts and hot temperature fluctuations.

In terms of humidity, moderate ranges between 40 and 60% are pleasant, but be cautious now not to move too excessively as this may cause fungal boom and leaf spot. You can also use a humidifier or mist your plant every so often to maintain humidity.

To prevent shock, try to preserve your money tree in a consistent environment away from air conditioners, heaters, or direct sunlight. With a little care and interest, your money tree will be thriving very quickly!

Money tree fertilizer

Taking good care of your money tree also includes making sure it gets the right nutrients to thrive. These plants are heavy feeders, so everyday fertilization is critical.

A balanced, water-soluble fertilizer can be used as soon as a month for the duration of the growing season.

It is likewise important to dilute the fertilizer according to the package deal directions to keep away from adverse the roots by way of over-fertilizing.

Throughout the winter, you need to lessen the fertilization each month. Always remember to water your money tree thoroughly before and after fertilizing to ensure it absorbs the nutrients properly.

How to Maintain Braided Money Trees

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How to braid a money tree indoor plant. Photo by Karl Thomas Moore, CC BY-SA 4.0

Braided money trees are popular as decorative indoor plants, especially in the form of bonsai.

To maintain the braided shape of your money tree, prune back any new growth that appears above the braid.

Keep the plant in a bright location with consistent temperature and humidity levels. Water when the top inch of soil is dry, and fertilize monthly during the growing season.

With proper care, your braided money tree bonsai will stay healthy and continue to grow beautifully.

Guiana Chestnut: Common Money tree plant problems

While Guiana Chestnut plants are generally easy to care for, they can experience a few common problems, like:

Trunk problems: Bark splitting or discoloration can be caused by over- or under-watering, as well as pests or disease. 

Leaf discoloration can indicate nutrient deficiencies or excessive exposure to light. 

Root problems: They can occur if the plant is overwatered, leading to root rot or fungal growth.

Pests:  Spider mites or mealybugs can also infect money trees. Regular inspection and taking quick action, like using insecticidal soap or neem oil, can help solve these problems. 

How to prune money trees

Pruning is an important part of money tree care, as it helps to shape the plant and encourage new growth.

To prune your money tree, simply use sharp, clean shears to remove any dead, damaged, or diseased branches.

You can also prune back any leggy or overgrown areas to encourage bushier growth.

Be sure to prune in the spring or summer when the plant is actively growing, and avoid pruning during the winter when growth is slower. Regular pruning will help keep your money tree looking healthy and vibrant.

We explain the pruning and notching techniques applied to many plants here in more detail. Check this out!

How to Repot Money Trees (Step by Step)

how to repot a money tree, money tree pruning and repotting,
How to take care of money plant – Money tree pruning and repotting

When it comes to repotting your money tree, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Choose a brand new pot that is barely larger and has drainage holes to allow excess water to escape.
  2. Carefully get rid of the plant from its old pot, being sure to gently loosen the roots to prevent harm.
  3. Add fresh, well-draining soil to the bottom of the pot to create a bed for your money tree.
  4. Place your plant within the center of the pot and fill it round with soil, lightly pressing right down to take away any pockets.
  5. Water to grow the soil, settle it, and provide hydration for the roots.
  6. Place your money tree in a bright, oblique spot to help it adjust to its new environment.
  7. Be careful not to overwater your plant for the first few weeks, as it needs time to adapt to its new surroundings and set itself up in the clean soil.

How to grow a money tree Through Cuttings (Step by Step)

Growing a money tree (Guiana chestnut) from cuttings is a simple and cost-effective way to propagate new plants. To do so: 

  1. Select a healthy stem with several leaves and a few inches of bare stem at the bottom. Cut just below a node, or where a leaf connects with the stem.
  2. Dip the cut end in rooting hormone and plant it in a pot filled with well-draining soil. Keep the soil moist and the cutting in bright, indirect light. 
  3. In a few weeks, new growth will appear, which indicates the cutting has successfully rooted. With proper care, your new money tree plant will grow into a beautiful, healthy addition to your indoor garden.

Now, I realize that from time to time it could be a little irritating to know how to take care of money trees indoors, particularly how to water a money tree properly once they do not seem to be thriving.

But do not give up! With a little staying power, your money tree plant can flourish very quickly.

So, you don’t need to worry; it is easy-peasy! Just make certain to place it in a shiny, indirect light and water it when the pinnacle inch of soil feels dry to the touch. And do not forget to dust the leaves from time to time to keep them looking fine.

Trust me, the advantages of having this foliage houseplant in your private home are more than worth it.

This type of money tree, Guiana Chestnut, comes in different sizes, such as a giant one in the wild or a miniature bonsai indoors. No matter how big money trees get, they are all stunning. So, what are you expecting? Head on out to your nearby plant shop and grab yourself a money tree plant.