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Money Tree

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2006
by ClaireM on June 14, 2006 11:35 AM
My daughter, Sarah, gave me a Money Tree for Mother's day; it was purchased at Wal-Mart. I am rather stumped as to why Wal-Mart placed this beautiful plant in a pot full of pebbles with no way to test the soil for moisture or lack thereof. Also, there is no outlet hole in the pot for water to go. The attached care "coupon" advises to "allow 'soil' to dry between waterings." Since they put the plant in pebbles (there is NO dirt in the pot whatsoever; just pebbles which are glued on VERY WELL and must be literally pried off the pot), how can I care for this plant? Can someone please tell me: Should I remove this plant from its pebble bed and transplant into a dirt container, OR can I care for it in its existent state?
Thanks!
by msgvb on June 14, 2006 02:30 PM
is this a bonsai? small square/rect. pot?
if so, these types of pots normally have regular potting soil under the rocks.

I have purchased a couple of these glued on rock arrangements, and taken the rocks off and replaced them with aquarium gravel or some other kind of small top dressing that lets water through.

I took it a step further and repotted mine in small separate pots -- the arrangement had four individual plants/trees total.

is yours an arrangement of several trees, or a single one made of three braided trees?

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by joclyn on June 14, 2006 02:43 PM
bonsai are not dealt with the same as the usual houseplants when it comes to watering.

you place the bonsai in your sink or a large container and fill it with tepid water until the level reaches just up to the bottom of the trunk. let the plant sit in the water for about a half hour to forty-five minutes and then take it out of the water - let it sit in the sink or container for about a half hour so that any excess water can work it's way out (there's usually a small drain hole in the bottom of the pot.

usually, the water treatment is done weekly to 10 days (at least for the juniper type plants).

you might want to check out some bonsai sites for more detailed information on caring for your money tree bonsai. the water requirements might be different.
by msgvb on June 14, 2006 04:47 PM
I must disagree slightly Joclyn, with all due respect.

I have several "potensai" I've been working with over the past year and a half or so. these storebought pachira are not really considered true bonsai. they're still really cool, but if they're in the type of soil I'm thinking they are in -- potting mix, as are most of these storebought ones -- you can water them like regular plants.

I think the reason for the soaking with real bonsai is because the soil mix that is used is very free draining and porous, and usually composed of coarse, somewhat water absorbing particles like pine or fir bark, Turface (calcined clay), expanded shale, and the like. I think the idea is to soak these particles so that they can release the water as needed. watering trees in this type of mix usually requires a more frequent schedule, so the big question is what type of soil is it in?

having had recent trouble with one of four pachira, I've learned that they're adaptable to pretty much any lighting condition, and don't like to dry out too much in between waterings.

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msg ::novice houseplant taker-care-of-er::
underexposed.org
flickr.com - msgvb
by joclyn on June 14, 2006 05:39 PM
i was speaking from my personal exerience with bonsai...

my experience/knowledge of bonsai is that virtually any type of tree or shrub can be used with the bonsai technique. i've never had a bonsai that was in just regular potting soil, either - and i've purchased from bonsai dealers as well as stores similar to walmart.

also, the fact that she clearly stated that the rocks were glued in place would negate the ability to water the plant in the normal manner for houseplants (from a watering can); thus my suggestion which is as per the instructions i received every time i purchased a bonsai tree or bush.

regardless, we digress!! [Smile]

claire, what, exactly do the care instructions state? and is there a name for the company that grew it? (might want to see if they have a website as you might be able to get more information on caring for the plant.)

also, are you sure there is no soil in the pot?
for it to have just stones doesn't make sense (unless the plant is 'lucky bamboo', that is).

are you sure it's a money plant? could you possibly post a pic of it?

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