Why is my money tree dying

Why Is My Money Tree Dying and How To Save it Fast

I admit I am a little superstitious about my money plants. I look at them like they are signs of my future financial growth, so you know I do my best to care for them! One day, my money tree leaves started dropping like flies, and I began to freak out. I thought to myself, why is my money tree dying?!? I was sad to see my beautiful plant suffering, and I had anxiety over my belief in its luck!

Money trees are typically known for being easy to care for. There are a few reasons why your money tree could be dying, and I will share them with you today.

The number one reason is overwatering. Like any other plant, too much water can kill your money tree! If the leaves are yellow or brown and droopy, this is usually a sign of overwatering. Be sure to check the soil before watering and only give it a drink when the top inch is dry.

In this blog post, we will cover the most common reasons money trees die, as well as tips on reviving them.

What Kind of Plant is the Money Tree?

The money tree is a tropical plant that grows in the wild in South and Central America. Its scientific name is Pachira Aquatica, but it’s also commonly known as the Malabar chestnut or Guiana chestnut.

The money tree is part of the mallow family, which includes hibiscus, okra, and cotton. The tree can grow up to 60 feet tall in the wild, but most money trees sold as houseplants are much smaller.

The Money Tree’s Meaning

The money tree is a symbol of good luck and prosperity. In many cultures, the plant is believed to bring good fortune to those who care for it.

The tree is often given as a gift to celebrate special occasions like graduations, jobs, and new homes.

Why Is My Money Tree Dying?

A money tree needs proper attention and care for its uninterrupted steady growth. If the plant has started to die or shows signs of discomfort, it is not living a healthy life.

Money trees have a few requirements that help them to create a simulated rainforest environment. If not, you will most likely witness the leaves wilting, drooping, falling off, turning yellow or brown, root rot, or stunted growth.

In most cases, reviving a money tree is possible, but if the damage has surpassed the limits, we can only hope for a little. We have jotted down the reasons which can cause the plants to die. If you watch out for these signs or identify them timely, you might save a life.


Just like us, plant life is water dependent too. It thrives well when the three basic requirements are completed and taken care of. These include proper sunlight, watering, and soil, of course. Fertilizers, environmental conditioning, and pest control are crucial too, but secondary.

-Leaves Curling Inward and Wrinkling

Just like us, plant life is water dependent too. It thrives well when the three basic requirements are completed and taken care of. These include proper sunlight, watering, and soil, of course. Fertilizers, environmental conditioning, and pest control are crucial too, but secondary.

Water is the main ingredient that you need to keep your plant alive. It helps the roots to absorb nutrients and minerals and feeds and circulates them into the entire plant’s circuit. However, if the water conditions are poor, it will probably hinder the plant’s growth.

Underwatering can be murderous for your plant. Yes, it is that crucial. The first signs you are most likely to see are leaves getting dry, curled, and then wrinkled.

The upper pores at the leaves try to protect themselves from the outside environment to prevent water loss to some extent. Initially, the leaves become dry and lose their shiny appearance.

Later, the leaves start to curl, hiding the porous surface. Finally, the leaves will get all wrinkled. It is a sign of ultimate weakness when leaves are about to fall off from the plant. Plant sacrifices their leaves to save more for the last survivors.

-Root Damage

Alongside the leaves, roots go through a similar drought condition. Healthy and happy roots always appear firm and whitish. If you have spotted the curling and wrinkling of the leaves, check for the roots on the safe side.

If underwatered, the roots separate themselves from the pot. You can see the roots above the soil level and all bushy.

If you see any of the above signs of underwatering in both roots and leaves, you need to:

  • As an immediate response, soak the roots with water and adjust the roots in the soil. Let the excess water drain out of the pot.
  • Always remember to water your plant regularly thrice every week.
  • Water the plants more in summer and less in winter.
  • Dropped or Wilted Leaves
  • Another high-alert situation is when the Money Tree leaves start drooping or wilting. In most cases, this happens when you are overwatering the plant than it is required. The roots remain submerged and saturated, making it challenging to catch oxygen from the environment. Often the stem gets softened due to overwatering.

Root Rot

Root rot is a complication that results when the roots stay damp for a long time. Money Trees have a natural habit of tolerating overwatering situations since there’s heavy seasonal rainfall in the forest.

Due to this fact, initially, your plant might tolerate it. However, drainage is dire. Later, as time prolongs, the effects will start at the leaves and go down to the roots.

The roots might appear black or dark brown in case of root rot. Root rot is not curable, and you should prevent it at all costs.

If you have found root rot, there might still be a chance to save the remaining unaffected plant. Separate the roots from the pot and identify the damaged ones.

Using a sharp, sterile blade, cut the rotted roots and plant the rest in a new pot with a fresh soil mix. Also, follow the pointers listed above to save your plant from overwatering.

Poor Light Conditions

When it comes to sunlight, Money Trees love bright sunny shaded spots. Outside or inside the house, it would thrive best under some cover. Keep them near an east-facing window shaded with some curtains if it is indoors.

However, your plant will only be able to handle problems if the light requirements are met. For instance, the plant’s growth will stunt in low-light conditions. The leaves would get darker and adopt a brown shade to contain as much sunlight as possible.

In contrast, unprotected bright light manifests differently. You will observe the color of the plant fading away. Sometimes, bright yellow spots and patches get prominent.

It steals the Money plant’s charm and ultimately kills them slowly.
To prevent that, keep the plant in a shiny shaded spot. Please avoid locating the plant where it is exposed to direct sunlight.

Pests Infestation and Diseases

Pests like aphids, mealybugs, or spider mites can infest your plant and ruin its shape, texture, and look. (P.s. some are toxic and can be life-threatening)

Watch out for them whenever you are caring for your Money Tree. If you spot any bug near them, wash the plant with warm water and wipe the leaves with neem oil. Its antiseptic quality will kill off their eggs and remove any tracks of them.

Damp and high humidity conditions are an open invitation for fungal diseases. You might see some white cotton-like growth on the parts of the plants. You must prune the affected area and repot the plant using a new potting medium to get rid of it.

Malnutrition and Overfeeding

Money Tree is not a heavy feeder. It is a myth that money plants grow more actively if you feed them a lot. Fertilizers have active ingredients that result in chemical burns and significant damage if used excessively.

The use should be limited and up to the plant’s demand and size. In case of overfeeding, you will spot some white crusts (chemical debris and waste) on the pot’s surface. Also, the growth tends to slow down in a few cases.

The Money plant’s growth rate slows down a little if they aren’t fed nicely. Over time, the soil gets depleted of the nutrients required for optimum plant growth. Hence, feeding your plant once every month in its active phase is a good practice to help you cater to this problem.

Here are a few things to understand:

  • Both liquid fertilizers and granular fertilizers are good. Granular ones are slow-releasing and can be added for long-term nutrition supply. However, liquid fertilizers can be added at regular frequencies at different intervals.
  • Your plant will love some water as soon as you inject fertilizer to drain the excess fertilizer (if needed).

Temperature Stress and Humidity Disbalance

Most novice gardeners think something other than temperature or humidity could be why their Money Trees are dying. Well, in all honesty, it plays a vital role in its blooming.

Money Tree plants prefer a warm room temperature to prosper the best, which isn’t that difficult to maintain, right? But temperature and humidity fluctuate as the season changes from time to time. In summer, the temperature rises above the recommended range, that is, 65-85°F (18-28°C), and humidity decreases below 50%.

Whereas in winter, the temperature goes down, which causes stunted growth. Low temperature is dangerous and results in irreparable damage; thus, you should avoid them altogether.

This is how my plant started dying- I did not realize I had placed it right next to an air conditioning vent, and it was freezing and drying out! Location can be essential in any plant’s life.

Relocate your plant in summer to a cooler spot with appropriate sunlight indoors and outdoors. Remember to mist your plant once every 3-4 days. Adjust the plant temperature and humidity using a digital thermometer.

During winter, keep your plant indoors, away from any direct windows or vents if placed outside.

How To Save A Dying Money Tree:

A Money Tree (Pachira aquatica) is a popular indoor plant known for its unique braided trunk and lush foliage. However, like any plant, it can sometimes struggle and even begin to die. Here are some steps you can take to save a dying Money Tree:

  1. Identify the Problem: The first step in saving a dying Money Tree is to identify the problem. Check the leaves and stem for any signs of damage or disease, such as yellowing, browning, or wilting. Over-watering or under-watering, insufficient light, and pest infestations are common problems that can cause a Money Tree to decline.
  2. Adjust Watering: Over-watering can cause root rot, which can quickly kill a Money Tree. Under-watering, on the other hand, can cause the leaves to wilt and dry out. To determine if your Money Tree needs water, stick your finger about an inch into the soil. If it feels dry, it’s time to water. Be sure to use well-draining soil and a pot with drainage holes to avoid waterlogging.
  3. Increase Humidity: Money Trees prefer a humid environment. If the air in your home is dry, mist the leaves with a spray bottle or place a tray of water near the plant to increase humidity. You can also consider using a humidifier to keep the air moist.
  4. Check Lighting: Money Trees need bright, indirect light to thrive. If the plant is not getting enough light, it may begin to drop leaves. Move your Money Tree to a brighter location, but avoid direct sunlight, which can scorch the leaves.
  5. Treat Pest Infestations: If you notice any signs of pest infestation, such as webs, spots, or holes in the leaves, treat the plant immediately. Use organic pest control methods, such as insecticidal soap or neem oil, to avoid damaging the plant further.
  6. Prune: If the leaves are yellowing or browning, prune them off to promote new growth. Remove any dead or damaged stems as well.
  7. Fertilize: A dying Money Tree may benefit from a boost of nutrients. Use a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer every month or so during the growing season
  8. Create a watering diary:  To help remember the days you have watered the plant. This will help in both overwatering and drought conditions.

Remember, a Money Tree can take time to recover, so be patient and consistent with your care. With proper attention, your Money Tree can thrive once again.

Final Thoughts

Caring for a money plant is not that difficult if you know what to do and what not to do. It just requires a little attention from time to time. If you concerned why is my money tree dying then you have several suggestions to try.

If you are doing things correctly, you won’t face any problems in the long run. Follow the tips above, and your plant will stay healthy and offer you prosperity for a lifetime. Thanks for reading!

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