How to take care of a Chinese money plant

Chinese money plant

Know in one minute about Chinese money plant

  • Chinese money plant is famous for its flat, rounded, coin-shaped leaves.
  • This plant is a symbol of good luck and easy to grow as well as maintain.
  • It removes indoor air pollutants and purifies the air.
  • Plant Chinese money plant in well-drained potting soil with normal room humidity.
  • Keep watering only when the top few inches of soil are dry.
  • Feed the plant with mild fertilizer to obtain the best growth.
  • Avoid direct sunlight and keep the plant in indirect bright light.
  • Maintain the temperature between 55°F-85°F (13°C-30°C).


Chinese money plant (Pilea peperomioides; family Urticaceae) is an evergreen, erect, succulent, and perennial flowering plant. Due to its flat, rounded, coin-shaped leaves, the Chinese money plant makes a great attractive and modern-looking plant for any home.

This plant is also considered a lucky symbol to activate financial energies. Chinese money plants are easy to care for and propagate as well as a fast-growing habit during its growing season. It acts like a succulent that has tough, shiny, leathery leaves, thick stems, etc (1).

The geographical distribution

This plant is native to Yunnan and Sichuan province in Southern China at the foot of the Himalayas. 

Common name

Chinese money plant, also known as UFO Plant, Missionary Plant, or Pancake Plant. It is also called just Pilea (the shorter version of its scientific name), lefse plant, missionary plant, bender plant, or mirror grass.

Botanical description

Chinese money plant is growing up to 12 inches (30 cm) tall, as it gets older, the stems will start to twist. This plant has round, dark green leaves, measuring up to 10 cm (4 in) in diameter on a long petiole. The stem axis is green to somewhat dark brown and produces small white flowers but remains mostly unnoticeable (2).

Chinese money plant Care 

To obtain a healthy plant we need some right conditions such as proper water, light, temperature, soil, and fertilizer. Let’s take a closure look at these conditions in detail:

1. Light

This plant needs bright indirect light. Too little light, making its leaves bend and curl rather than remaining flat and coin-shaped. Moreover, switch from bright to low light areas gradually from time to time. 

2. Soil

Chinese money plants prefer well-drained humus-rich soil, which gives space to grow roots healthy.

3. Temperature

The ideal temperatures required for healthy growth is 55°F-85°F (13°C-30°C).  

4. Fertilizer

Feeding the plant with liquid mild fertilizer solution once a month helps it grow in its best possible way.

  • Water– This plant requires watering thoroughly when the top layer of the soil to dry out before watering it again. A moderate amount of water like once or twice a week in summer and once a week or less in winter will be enough. Because overwatering or less watering may cause droop, stems lose strength and everything starts to flop. So it should always check the soil’s state. If the soil seems moist you should wait for things to dry out, if the soil seems dry It’s time to get watering
  • Repotting- Repotting of Chinese money plants should be done when they produce many offsets (daughter plant) or the mother plant has outgrown their pots. Repotting should be done in a bit bigger than the existing one-pot once a year. But if you want this plant bushy then do not remove the offsets growing next to the mother plant. They will slowly grow and give bulk to the overall appearance. 
  • Humidity – This plant does so well in normal room humidity, but if the edges burn or crisp, raise the humidity levels.
  • Chinese money plant propagation

  • A mature healthy plant will eventually produce plantlets up through the soil, which you can separate from the mother plant. This way you can create new plants and is very easy to propagate in the spring season (growing stage). 
  • To cut the daughter plant, use a clean and sharp knife, following the stem about an inch under the soil.
  • After this plant, put it in a new pot and keep the soil moist until the plant is well-anchored and begins to produce new leaves. 
  • Once the new plantlets grow straight from the stem, you can cut these free. 
  • Place the stem of the offset in a small glass or jar with water until roots develop in a week or two. 
  • Once the roots have grown to about an inch long, carefully place them in a small pot with fresh soil.
  • Chinese money plant good for dogs and cats or not

Yes, it is safe for dogs, cats, and even humans. But keep this plant out of reach of your pets because playful claws can cause damage.

  • Chinese money plant as an indoor air purifying plant

Like the other succulent, this plant can also help to remove indoor air pollutants and purifies the air. Other than this it is fast-growing, easy to care for and propagate, and effortlessly matches any home decor.

  • Q&A

  • How do you take care of the Chinese money plant?

To obtain Chinese money plant healthy we need some right conditions such as bright light, but with no direct sunlight. Water when dry, providing a well-draining potting soil. Moreover, feeding the plant with a good fertilizer is helpful for its growth, and repotting is necessary to rejuvenate new happy plants. 

  • How much light does a Chinese money plant need?

Chinese money plants need indirect bright light because direct sunlight may cause a purple hue in the leaves. On the other hand, less light will bend and curl the leaves. Moreover, suddenly changing conditions of light like low light to highlight also shock the plant and cause burn spots. Thus make sure you move your plant gradually to avoid this problem. Furthermore, Chinese money plants grow quickly and lean towards the light source, it is best to rotate it. Rotation of this plant at least once a week is preventing it from getting asymmetrical.

  • Do Chinese money plants need sunlight?

No, this plant does not need direct sun, It will scorch leaves. 

  • Is a Chinese money plant lucky?

Yes, the Chinese money plant is considered a lucky symbol to activate financial energies. It is said that place a coin in the soil with your Chinese money plant and will start to attract wealth.