Did you know that if you have one Pilea peperomioides, you can have many? Propagating Chinese money plant is super easy! You can give offsets and cuttings away to friends and family, expand your own Pilea army or even sell them.
Keep reading for everything you need to know about propagating Chinese money plant!
Note: You can now buy Pilea peperomioides online here. Yay!
Pilea peperomioides babies
Although Pilea peperomioides can be propagated through stem cuttings, there is not much reason to do so. You’d have to wait until the stem cuttings have rooted, which takes quite a while and is not always succesful.
Instead, just take good care of your Pilea and it will actually provide the best propagation method all by itself: healthy Chinese money plants produce baby plants both from their roots and their stems. If you’re not sure how to keep your Pilea healthy and happy be sure to have a look at the Chinese money plant care guide.
Luckily this is not a difficult plant and anyone should be able to keep it alive. Just plant your Pilea peperomioides in a simple plastic pot with soil mixture that includes some perlite. Then, place it in a location where it receives bright light but no direct sun and water when the top of the soil has dried out.
That’s it! Baby plants should start popping up once your plant has had some time to mature and adjust to its location in your home.
Did you know? Pilea peperomioides was first brought to Europe from China by a Norwegian missionary in 1946. It was then commonly traded through cuttings and spread through the continent!“A Chinese puzzle solved“
Pilea peperomioides propagation methods
Propagating Chinese money plant from root plantlets
The easiest way to propagate Pilea peperomioides is by using plantlets that grow from the mother plant’s roots.
A healthy, large Pilea that has plenty of pot space should regularly produce these little babies. They pop up from the soil and are ready to use once they have a few leaves of their own.
Because root plantlets already have a root system of their own the only thing you have to do is sever their connection to the mother plant’s roots using a sharp and clean knife. Then, just pop them into smaller pots of their own and keep the soil lightly moist. Voila! Brand new Pilea peperomioides babies that you can keep, give away or sell.
The move to their own pot might slightly shock the babies but because they already have a root system they usually immediately start growing.
Did you know? Pilea is also referred to as “pass it on plant”. Traditionally, in Asia, they’re given away as tokens of good luck.
Propagating Chinese money plant from stem plantlets
Pilea peperomioides plants also produce babies on their own stems. These stem babies don’t have a root system of their own yet so they need a little more attention than root plantlets, but they’re still very easy to use.
- To propagate your Pilea peperomioides from stem plantlets, just remove the babies from the mother plant’s stem using that same clean, sharp knife.
- You now have two options: placing the baby plants in a vase with water or in a regular pot with moist soil.
- Most houseplant enthusiasts prefer the first option, as the little plants in their tiny vases look quite adorable. This method also allows you to see whether your Pilea babies are rooting as they should.
- Once you’re seeing some root growth you can move the babies to their own pot or you can keep them in water indefinitely. Either is fine!
Whichever method you use, be patient. It might take a while before your Pilea baby grows its own root system, especially in wintertime when most houseplants aren’t actively growing.
Tip: You can be confident the plantlet is healthy, happy and rooted once you see some new leaves popping up.
Propagating Chinese money plant from stem cuttings
Although Pilea peperomioides can be propagated through stem cuttings, there is usually not much reason to do so. You’d have to wait until the stem cuttings have rooted, which takes quite a while and is not always successful.
There are two situations, though, where the possibility of taking stem cuttings comes in very handy. If your Pilea peperomioides grows too tall for your liking, you can behead the plant. This is also an option if it’s suffering from stem rot, in which case all the rotting parts must be discarded.
The cool thing is that if you behead your Chinese money plant, if the original part is still healthy, it will resprout. The part you cut off will also continue growing. So instead of having to look at one overly tall and awkward Pilea, you can now have two decent looking ones!
Propagating Chinese money plant from stem cuttings works basically the same as rooting a stem plantlet that has no roots yet. Just place the stem in water or soil and pamper it until you see new growth!
Chinese money plant care
If you’re not sure how to keep your Pilea healthy and happy, here are some tips!
Pilea peperomioides plants do well in bright but indirect sunlight, like most indoor houseplants. If your options are limited and you have to keep your plants close to a window, just make sure to filter the sunlight. This is easy enough to do with sheer curtains or blinds.
If you want to get a nice, aesthetically-pleasing circular appearance with your Pilea peperomioides plants, just be sure to rotate the plants, little by little, every day or every other day.
This will help the plants become fuller and rounder in appearance since the leaves won’t all grow in just one outward direction.
As for the temperature, Pileas prefer to be kept nice and warm at room temperature or above. The temps in our homes should be perfect for them
Although they can be kept outside, it’s not the best idea if your location drops below 50 °F (10 °C) or experiences a lot of sudden temperature changes.
Pilea peperomioides plants love being in moist but not soggy soil. To avoid getting root rot because of the roots sitting in still water for too long, be sure to use a well-draining soil mix. General potting soil mixed with some perlite tends to do the trick.
When it comes to planting, again, you need to make sure that whatever you use to hold your plant is well-draining. Plastic or ceramic pots tend to be fan favorites. Terracotta pots are options, too, although some people avoid them because of how porous they are.
Meanwhile, others think that it’s because they’re porous that they’re the superior choice. It’s really all about finding what works best for you and your plants. Every home has different conditions.
Tip: You can read more in the guide to repotting Chinese money plants.
Pilea peperomioides plants don’t need a lot of fertilizer to do their thing. You can easily get away with using a diluted regular houseplant fertilizer once a month or so during the growing season.
It’s best to avoid using any fertilizers during the wintertime or when the plant isn’t sprouting new leaves since it’ll just go to waste. The plant won’t use the extra nutrients.
When it comes to watering Chinese money plants, as it was mentioned above, they like moist but not soggy soil. If you’re new to owning the plant and still figuring out your watering schedule, twice a week is usually a good place to start.
Depending on your household temperature and how much light the plant is getting, you should check the soil daily and adjust the watering as needed. For example, if you poke your finger a couple inches into the soil and it feels bone dry, then it’s time to water.
If it’s moist to touch, you can probably wait another couple of days. During the winter, you can often safely cut back on watering as often, although you should still frequently check the soil.
Tip: Still unsure? Check out the full guide to watering Chinese money plants.
Pet lovers can rejoice because Pilea peperomioides is not toxic to cats and dogs, or any other kind of pet or human, according to the ASPCA!
Of course, it’s still best practice to always keep plants out of reach of pets and children, just to be safe. You can read more in the article on Chinese money plant toxicity.
If you have any more questions about propagating Pilea peperomioides or if you want to share your own experiences with this popular houseplant, don’t hesitate to leave a comment below!
First three photos by Bethany Berg, who sells Pilea peperomioides babies on Etsy here.