The money tree or Pachira aquatica is a plant in the Malvaceae family that has its origin in Central and South America. Its main feature is its abundant foliage, its large and beautiful leaves, and its trunk that intertwines as it grows. Due to these qualities and because it is perfectly suited to growing in pots, it is highly sought after for interior decoration. In this article we will analyze in detail everything about fertilizer for money tree, how and when it should be applied, what type to select and some basic care that must be taken into account for its growth.
1. What do the three numbers mean on a package of fertilizer?
Every time you start doing a task that you don’t know much about, concepts appear that you don’t know their meaning. Some may be more important than others, and when it comes to fertilization NPK values are something you should know if or if.
NPK values are those three numbers that characterize any inorganic fertilizer you can buy at a nursery. If you don’t know what it means, you may end up fertilizing with something harmful to your plant.
You may have noticed that there are countless combinations of these three numbers, each representing a different type of fertilizer. There are 20-20-20, 15-10-15, 18-46-0 and much more.
But don’t worry, understanding what NPK values are all about is more than easy. They represent the percentage value of the three main nutrients that plants use. These are nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P) and end in potassium (K).
Let’s develop an example so that everything becomes clearer to you. Suppose you bought a 10-pound package of fertilizer 15-9-12. This means that 1.5 pounds of the total is nitrogen, 0.9 pounds is phosphorous and 1.2 pounds is potassium.
Pretty simple, right? Once this is clear to you, we can continue with the posting. 😉
2. Feeding money tree
Although the fertilization of your money tree is a fairly important point in the cultivation of this plant, this feeding is not enough for a correct development. There are many cares that must be carried out.
We will start by giving some tips for the good growth of this houseplant, and then we will fully involve ourselves with everything related to its fertilization.
2.1 How to grow
In general, it should be noted that the money tree is a fairly easy plant to grow. As it is very strong and durable, the care they need is basic.
Now, although it is very resistant, you cannot leave this plant forgotten. Since although they are few, there are certain actions that you must carry out.
Please note that we will list care in a totally random order. Neither of these cares is more important than the other, follow each of them with the same responsibility.
When planting it is good to do it in a pot of a size according to its size. Place fertile soil capable of easy drainage, also check that the pot has good holes.
Given the abundant development of the same it is necessary to carry out a transplant, and change it to another bigger pot, with some regularity. You’ll notice when it’s necessary, but it’s usually every two years.
For a good development, it is a plant that needs good lighting, although it is preferable to avoid exposure to direct sunlight. Excessive exposure will cause significant burns to your leaves.
The best location for your aquatic pachira is one with half shade. You will notice that when you grow indoors, the plant will develop with a certain inclination (in search of light) to counteract this inclination, remember to turn the pot regularly.
The ideal climate for the money tree is tropical, with an ideal temperature range between 16-25 ° C. Temperatures below 12 ° C do not like it at all, so never take it out in the garden if winters where lives are somewhat strong.
Although its name pachira aquatica may suggest that it is a plant with high water needs, this is not correct. It only gets that name because its origin is in swampy areas of America, but it doesn’t really need much water to grow.
Knowing this, be sure to water in the growing seasons (spring and summer) whenever you notice that the soil is dry. When you apply the water, do it in quantity, making sure it reaches all of your roots.
In autumn and winter the water requirements decrease, being able to do them every 15 days approximately.
Pruning the longest stems of your pachira is a good practice to free it from the weight and help it stay more upright. Since it is a rapidly developing plant, you will notice that pruning will encourage new growth, and in a few months it will need to be pruned again.
The best time to perform any pruning on this plant is spring or summer, this will help you recover quickly.
This point could not be missing from the list. In the next sections we will take care of it in depth.
If you are reading this post, you will probably be interested in learning about fertilizing these other plants.
2.2 Best fertilizer for pachira aquatica
Due to the characteristics of the money tree, liquid fertilizers for green plants are ideal. As we already explained at the beginning of the publication about NPK values, we can be more specific and say that an 8-4-6 or 7-4-7 liquid fertilizer is an excellent option.
The formula of these liquid fertilizers is designed to promote the growth of the leaves in perfect conditions, thus maintaining the health of the plant. With nitrogen helping the development of the foliage and the structure of the plant. Phosphorus that favors the growth of roots and potassium helping to better absorb water.
Another alternative that can be useful in many cases is the use of one of the most popular chemical fertilizers, such as urea. Being recommended to apply it diluted in water.
On the other hand, it is never wrong to make a complementary use of organic fertilizers, like any compost. In the next section, we will learn how to make a very simple organic fertilizer with the use of milk and water.
3. How and when to fertilize money tree
As we just said, the best fertilizer when it comes to a money tree is a liquid one for green plants. They are generally designed for plants that are characterized by their green leaves and not so much for their flowering.
Many of these inorganic fertilizers contain liquid humus that improves leaf formation and maintenance. And algae extract that helps the strength and vigor of this plant.
When applying this type of fertilizer, note the following:
- Between the period of March to October apply this type of fertilizer (8-4-6 or 7-4-7). Do it at the time of watering once every seven days.
- In the period from November to February, decrease the amount of fertilizer for the money tree. At this time when development is minor, only fertilize every two to three weeks.
- In the event that you have one of these plants in a greenhouse or in any space where the temperature can always be kept at its optimum level, fertilization should be carried out every 7 days.
As for the dose, it is generally sufficient to dilute a stopper of the fertilizer container in three liters of water. Although these tips are more than valid, never stop reading the label of the fertilizer you have purchased, you will find all the instructions to use there.
An alternative to liquid fertilizer, which many gardeners apply, is the use of diluted urea. As you should know, urea is the granular solid fertilizer with the highest nitrogen concentration. You can dilute 1 teaspoon in 10 liters of water and apply it in the same way that we explain with the liquid fertilizer. Although you will certainly have better results with a more balanced fertilizer of the 8-4-6 or 7-4-7 type, since it will not provide only nitrogen.
Finally, it should be noted that the use of slow-release organic fertilizers, such as compost, may be another good option. In this case it is not necessary to apply very regularly, but two or three applications per year may be sufficient, helping the contributions of inorganic fertilizers.
3.1 How to make natural liquid fertilizer for money tree
In this section, I will teach you how to make a 100% natural fertilizer that is good to apply to the vast majority of houseplants, like money trees. It is very easy and requires very few resources to complete, so I assure you that you can do it in less time than necessary to read this article.
Follow these steps to make this natural fertilizer:
Step 1: Take any container pour water into it (preferably does not contain chlorine, if rainwater is better)
Step 2: Dilute raw milk in the water. The mixture can have a maximum concentration of 50/50, although with 10% milk and 90% water is sufficient.
Step 3: Mix this solution until it is homogeneous.
Step 4: You can apply this natural fertilizer both by spraying foliage and on the ground as irrigation.
Keep in mind that humans not only need calcium, plants need it, too. This milk-based fertilizer will especially provide calcium and other contributions like B vitamins and sugars.
On the other hand, it is quite useful as an aphid repellent and fungicide.
4. Fertilizer for money tree video
To end this article, as usual in this blog, we have selected a video (of The Green Alchemist channel) that is very interesting to me. Especially to reinforce the care that must be carried out in this particular houseplant. I have no doubt that it will be very useful to you.
Well, and with this we have finished the publication, I hope it has been useful to read it, and have no doubt when you should fertilize your money tree or pachira aquatica. 😉