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Pachira Care

DIY Braiding Pachira Aquatica Trunk

by Plants for all Seasons 17 May 2024

One of the most captivating features of Pachira Aquatica, commonly known as the money tree, is its braided trunk. While this unique characteristic adds to the plant's charm, it is often created through careful braiding of young, flexible stems. If you have a young money tree and want to give it this distinctive look, follow this step-by-step guide to braid the trunk yourself.

Why Braid the Trunk?

Braiding the trunk of a Pachira Aquatica not only enhances its aesthetic appeal but also makes the plant a striking focal point in any room. The braided design symbolizes interconnectedness and growth, fitting well with the money tree’s reputation for bringing good luck and prosperity.

Materials Needed

  • A young Pachira Aquatica plant with multiple stems
  • Soft plant ties or twine
  • Pruning shears
  • Patience and gentle hands

Step-by-Step Braiding Guide

1. Select a Young Plant

  • Age and Flexibility: Choose a young money tree with flexible stems that can be easily manipulated without breaking. Typically, younger plants have more pliable trunks.
  • Number of Stems: Ensure your plant has at least three stems. More stems can be braided, but three is the standard number for a simple braid.

2. Prepare the Plant

  • Water the Plant: Water the money tree thoroughly a day before braiding. Hydrated stems are more flexible and less likely to break during the braiding process.
  • Inspect for Health: Check that the plant is healthy, free from pests and diseases, and has strong, robust stems.

3. Start the Braiding Process

  • Begin at the Base: Gently gather the stems at the base. If the stems are of different lengths, ensure they are as even as possible before starting the braid.
  • Initial Twist: Start with a simple twist at the base to hold the stems together.
  • Braiding Technique: Braid the stems as you would hair. Cross the right stem over the middle stem, then cross the left stem over the new middle stem. Continue this pattern, gently weaving the stems together. Be careful not to braid too tightly to avoid damaging the stems.

4. Secure the Braid

  • Soft Ties: Use soft plant ties or twine to secure the braid at the top. Avoid tying too tightly, as this can restrict the plant’s growth and cause damage.
  • Adjusting the Braid: As the plant grows, adjust the ties and continue braiding new growth to maintain the braid’s appearance. Check the ties regularly to ensure they are not cutting into the stems.

5. Post-Braiding Care

  • Watering: Keep the plant well-watered but ensure good drainage to prevent root rot.
  • Light: Place the plant in a location with bright, indirect light. Avoid direct sunlight, which can scorch the leaves.
  • Fertilizing: Feed the plant with a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer every 4-6 weeks during the growing season to encourage healthy growth.
  • Pruning: Prune any stray or damaged leaves to keep the plant tidy and healthy.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

1. Breaking Stems

  • Solution: If a stem breaks during the braiding process, do not panic. Allow the plant to heal by reducing stress and ensuring it receives proper care. In some cases, you may need to start over with younger, more flexible stems.

2. Uneven Growth

  • Solution: If one stem grows significantly faster than the others, trim it back to maintain an even braid. This encourages balanced growth among all the stems.

3. Tight Braiding

  • Solution: If the braid is too tight, it can restrict growth and cause damage. Loosen the braid gently and ensure the ties are not too tight. Regularly check and adjust the braid as the plant grows.


Braiding the trunk of your Pachira Aquatica is a rewarding way to enhance its visual appeal and create a unique, eye-catching plant. By following these steps and providing proper care, you can successfully braid the trunk of your money tree and enjoy the beauty and symbolism it brings to your home.

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