How to Care for Your Chinese Money Plant

By: Matt Slaymaker
May 27, 2020
How to Care for Your Chinese Money Plant
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Are you looking to add some green magic to your home? The Chinese money plant can be a gorgeous and easy-to-care addition to your indoor space. It’s believed to bring good fortune and prosperity. Now, who wouldn’t want that?

But, you may wonder how to care for a Chinese money plant indoors. Growing this popular houseplant is simple, even for beginners. This green beauty originates from Southern China, so it loves mild climates that can be easily replicated at home. 

Are you ready to welcome this versatile, fuss-free, lucky charm into your indoor garden? Read on and learn the A to Z of proper care for Chinese money plants!

What Is a Chinese Money Plant? 

What Is a Chinese Money Plant


The Chinese money plant, a houseplant extraordinaire, is an indoor gardener’s favorite. Its flat, coin-shaped leaves and sleek stems sprouting from the base create a bushy look. 

The plant with the scientific name, Pilea peperomioides, is native to the forested foothills of Southern China in Yunnan and Sichuan provinces.

With a bit of TLC, this lucky charm can grow to 12”-14”, attracting immediate attention, wherever you place it. 

What Are Chinese Money Plants Good for?

The Chinese money plant is known for attracting good fortune. But it offers even more benefits for your home. 

Let's explore why this unique houseplant is so popular:

  • A design statement: The Chinese money plant’s naturally bushy frame with vibrant leaves adds a lively but elegant flair to minimalist or modern design schemes.
  • Air purification: This plant is a toxin buster. It removes pollutants and gases to improve indoor air quality, making your home healthier.
  • Relaxing environment: It is known to have a soothing effect by lowering anxiety levels and increasing your happiness, and focus. 
  • Positive energy: In Feng Shui, the plant is  believed to attract positive Chi. It represents friendship and generosity and promotes sharing and attracting wealth.
  • Luck and prosperity: The Chinese money plant is a living, growing symbol of prosperity and financial fortune. Its round leaves resemble coins, hence, the name. Also, the plant is considered lucky.  
  • It’s pet-safe: Pet owners are happy to grow a Chinese money plant because it’s pet-friendly and won’t harm their furry friends.

Chinese Money Plant Care: How to Keep Your Money Plant Happy 

Chinese Money Plant Care

It’s easy to make the Chinese money plant happy and healthy. All it demands is occasional watering and partial sunlight, and it will thrive easily in moderate temperatures. 

How Often to Water a Chinese Money Plant 

You need to water your Chinese money plant once every week. Drench the soil until water runs out of the pot’s drainage holes. Or, place the pot in a water-filled tub for bottom watering where the soil absorbs water. Then, remove it from the tub once the surface becomes damp. Furthermore, always let the top soil layers dry between waterings. 

During extreme humidity conditions, or dormant growth phases, water the plant more sparingly, every 10-14 days. 

How Do I Know If My Chinese Money Plant Needs Water?

Your plant needs a drink if the soil looks dry and crumbly. It may also start pulling away from the edges inside the pot. A thirsty plant will have droopy leaves that eventually become yellow and crispy before falling off. 

A Chinese money plant isn’t built to be bone-dry for too long. If the soil looks dry and the plant shows signs of being underwatered, try a dip test with your finger. If the top 2”-3” layer of soil feels hard and dusty, the plant needs watering. 

Chinese Money Plant: Lighting Requirements, Humidity & Temperature 

Chinese Money Plant Sunlight

One of the reasons the Chinese money plant is an excellent houseplant is its adaptability to a range of indoor conditions. It thrives in indirect light and moderate temperatures, and you don’t have to worry so much about the humidity, either. 

How Much Light Does a Chinese Money Plant Need?

The Chinese money plant thrives in bright, indirect sunlight. Place it in a spot receiving 4+ hours of indirect sunlight daily. Dappled sunlight throughout the day can enhance its growth. But direct sunlight exposure will scorch your money plant leaves. It can tolerate low light, as well, however, the plant will eventually struggle and grow leggy.

A spot by an east-facing window receiving the first rays of the mellow morning sun or by a west-facing window receiving sunlight later in the day is an excellent choice. Use a grow light if you don’t have access to sufficient natural light. 

What Temperature Is Best for Chinese Money Plant?

The ideal temperature range for a healthy Chinese money plant is 70F°-80F°. Ensure that it is in a consistently warm environment throughout the day. Note that the temperature shouldn’t drop below 50F° if you want to enjoy a vibrant money plant. 

Chinese Money Plant Humidity: Should I Mist a Chinese Money Plant?

There’s no need for extra humidity for your Chinese money plant's healthy growth. So, you don’t have to mist it regularly. However, if it looks dry and brittle with brown or droopy leaves even after regular watering, you can spritz the plant. Showering it occasionally will help you remove any dust and clean its leaves, too.

Chinese Money Plant: Soil and Fertilization 

The Chinese money plant isn’t too demanding when it comes to its soil and fertilizer requirements. Still, it’s essential to plant it in a good potting mix with the right nutrients and feed it in the growing season to meet its needs and help it thrive indoors. 

Best Soil for a Chinese Money Plant

A well-draining organic indoor potting mix is ideal for your Chinese money plant. You can use cacti and a succulent mix, too. A coir or peat base with a pH of 6.0-7.0 is highly recommended. Amend it with perlite to improve drainage.   

What Fertilizer Does Chinese Money Plant Need?

Give your Chinese money plant a nutritional boost with a balanced fertilizer. Use a liquid fertilizer and dilute it in water to half its strength. 

Apply it monthly in the growth months, in the spring and summer. But let the plant rest in winter when it goes in its dormant phase. Also, water the plant a day before feeding it to prevent burning the roots. 

When to Repot a Chinese Money Plant 

Repot a Chinese money plant every 2 years, but wait 6-12 months to repot a new plant. The best time is spring when its growth is optimal. Also, you should repot your green lucky charm if the roots start to show through the drainage holes or poke out of the top soil surface. Although the Chinese money plant doesn’t mind to be root-bound, repotting it if the roots are crammed will encourage new leaf growth and promote the plant’s overall well-being.

Transfer the plant to a pot that is 2” larger than the current one. Water it at least an hour before removing it from the pot. Don’t forget to loosen its roots and trim off any damaged or rotten parts.

Fill the new pot with a well-draining indoor potting mix amended with perlite and growth hormone, and set the plant an inch below the pot’s rim. Add more soil from the sides and tamp it down gently for stability. 

How to Propagate a Chinese Money Plant 

Have you ever wondered how to multiply and grow new money plants at home? The good news is that you can easily propagate Chinese money plants from the one you have.

The best time to do it is in early spring, when its growth is in full swing. Take a cutting from the main stem about an inch below the soil. Place it in a vase with water. Allow the cutting to root, changing the water every week. 

You can also propagate your Chinese money plant by using the baby offshoots, which will have already developed tender roots. Carefully separate the pup from the mother plant by digging it gently out of the pot and place the offshoot in a potting mix. Use a well-draining indoor potting mix mixed with rooting hormone. Water the baby money plant and keep it in medium bright, indirect sunlight. The roots should be established after 4-6 weeks, and you’ll have a thriving young Chinese money plant.  

How to Prune a Chinese Money Plant 

Pruning your Chinese money plant is not generally necessary. Still, removing leggy stems and leaves encourages fuller, bushier growth and a healthier appearance. 

Here are some tips for pruning a Chinese money plant:

  • Use sharp and disinfected shears for pruning. 
  • Prune it in spring, as the plant will branch out better during the growth season.
  • Trim the leggy stems back to the point above a leaf node to boost new growth.
  • Remove discolored, damaged, or pest-infested leaves.
  • Cut off dead or dying stems to stop wasting the plant’s energy.

Cleaning your money plant of yellowing and brown leaves will also prevent disease issues. And remember that leaf problems are often a sign of incorrect care and maintenance. So, read on to find out some of the most common causes and solutions for issues with your beloved Chinese money plant. 

Chinese Money Plant Leaves: Problems and Solutions 

Chinese Money Plant Leaf Problems

If your Chinese money plant’s leaves develop problems over time, identify and eliminate the causes.

Take a look at the common leaf issues:

  1. Leaves curling inward: This happens due to underwatering, low humidity, or scorching light. Water the plant more frequently, mist it, and move it to a spot of indirect sunlight.
  2. Droopy leaves: If the stems are limp and mushy, the plant is overwatered, whereas wilting suggests underwatering. Check the soil surface for confirming the moisture level. 
  3. Yellowing leaves: Limp and discolored leaves indicate overwatering or a nutrient deficiency. Repot the plant, fertilize it regularly and water it as soon as the soil dries. 
  4. Leaves falling: This may be either due to overwatering and rotten roots or underwatering. Check if the soil is soggy or parched, and water the plant accordingly. 
  5. Brown spots on the leaves: Direct sunlight might be drying out the leaves or scorching them. Move the plant away from direct sunlight and keep it in a spot with indirect but bright light.
  6. Black patches: These are rotten patches caused by excess moisture. Let the soil become dry in between watering sessions, and protect the leaves from getting wet. 
  7. White spots: Small white spots on the underside iof the leaves ndicate harmless mineral deposits you can wipe away. Fuzzy spots are due to mealybugs. You should isolate and treat the plant against the pests. 
  8. Slow or stagnated leaf growth: This could be due to low light, poor nutrition, or the plant has become overly rootbound. Repot and fertilize the plant, and place it in a well-lit area. 

How to Care for a Chinese Money Plant: FAQs 

Q: Is the Chinese money plant safe for cats and dogs?

A: Yes, the Chinese money plant is safe for cats and dogs. They will be perfectly ok if they take a bite or two of the plant. Still, be careful and never allow your furry companion to regularly nibble on any of your houseplants, as this can cause digestive problems. Your plants won’t appreciate it, either, and will start to look worse for wear.

Q: Can Chinese Money Plants live in low light?

A:  Yes, Chinese money plants can survive in low light. But it’s not recommended to keep it in the dark for prolonged periods because it will become leggy. The plant needs preferably at least 4 hours of bright, indirect light per day.

Q: Why does my Chinese Money Plant look sad?

A: Your Chinese money plant may look unhappy, limp and pale if it’s underwatered or overwatered. Underexposure of sunlight can also affect the appearance of your Chinese money plant. 

Q: Where is the best place to put a money plant in Feng Shui?

A: According to Feng Shui, you should keep your money plant in a place that faces the southeast direction, which is associated with wealth, financial prosperity, good luck and abundance. The Chinese money  plant is not only a great addition to any home but it’s also great for your office

Q: How do you take care of a Chinese money plant in the winter?

A:  During winter, water a Chinese money plant every 10-14 days. Make sure to check if the soil is still moist before you give your plant a drink. There’s no need to fertilize it. Make sure the temperature doesn’t fall below 50F°.  


Plenty of bright, indirect lighting, regular but minimal watering, and proper care keep Chinese money plants thriving. You can pair this lucky charm with other good-fortune plants like the spider plant and the snake plant

Moreover, as it’s a popular Feng Shui plant, you might want to boost your financial prosperity by also growing a lucky bamboo and a money tree to complement your Chinese money plant and create an inviting indoor Zen oasis.