The Art and Science of Chinese Money Plant Propagation

Due to the many benefits offered by the Chinese Money Plant or Pilea peperomioides, it has become a popular favorite among plant lovers worldwide. This plant has round, coin-like leaves that make the interior look elegant, and they also have a meaning connected with good fortune and prosperity. Taking cuttings of the Chinese Money Plant is also quite simple and rewarding, which makes it ideal for all kinds of gardeners – from the amateur to the professional ones. Here, I’ll discuss the methods that can be used for propagating the Chinese Money plant together with some important steps specifically on how to propagate it.

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Understanding The Chinese Money Plant

Before moving any further toward the propagation techniques, let us discuss a little about the money plant tree of Chinese origin. Pilea peperomioides is a type of plant that grows in the Yunnan Province of southern China and is classified under the Urticaceae family. Grown best in indirectly lit areas, it enjoys sandy or loamy soil with good drainage. It can be propagated from stem cuttings taken at any time of the year and, when provided with favorable circumstances, can reach a height of 12 inches and bear a compact head from which it derives its soubriquet of ‘ball plant.

Methods of Propagation

There are three primary methods for propagating the Chinese Money Plant: pups (offsets), stem cuttings, and leaf cuttings. In this case, both methods have certain benefits and depend on the parent plant’s health condition and size.

1. Division of Pups

The easiest and most efficient method of growing the Chinese Money Plant is through vegetative propagation using the pups or offsets found around the base of the central plant. These are young plants that can be transplanted and cultivated individually from this stage onwards.

Steps For Propagation by Division:

Identify the Pups:

Seeds will emerge from the parent plant’s root and as small plantlets. These are the pups or offsets which can be used for propagation purposes.

Prepare the Tools:

Some of the requirements include; always using a sharp and clean knife or scissors to minimize harm to the plant and make a clean cut in the stem.

Remove the Pup:

Dig around the sides of the pup with extra care to give it a little depth that would reveal the roots slightly. Using a sharp pair of scissors, you may have to cut the pup from the parent plant but this must be done while some roots are remaining. If the pup does not have roots then it is still possible to propagate but it will be slower than with rooted pups.

Plant the Pup:

Properly prepare the soil: pour some well-draining soil into a small pot and put the pup in it. Minimally, water it once a week and put it in a sunny location but out of direct sunlight.

Care for the New Plant:

Therefore, The soil should be moist but not saturated with water, which may call for slight adjustments after planting. It should begin to lay down new growth and court several weeks from when it hatched.

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2. Stem Cuttings

This arises in the following ways Propagation through stem cuttings is another technique that is used, especially if the parent plant is tall and ‘leggy’, or if there are long stems that can be pruned.

Steps For Propagation by Stem Cuttings:

Select a Healthy Stem:

Pick a fresh stem with as many leaves as possible. The stem should be at least 4-5 inches in length.

Make the Cut:

With the help of a clean and sharp knife or scissors, remove the stem up to the node, which is the point where the leaves are connected to the stem.

Remove Lower Leaves:

Trim off the bottom leaves of the cutting and leave several at the top.

Place in Water:

Submerge the lower nodes of the cutting in a jar of water. Replace water every few days to avoid water becoming stagnant.

Wait for Roots:

It takes approximately a few weeks before roots start growing from the nodes of the plant. Once the roots have developed to a few inches, the cutting can be transplanted to soil.

Plant the Cutting:

Take the rooted cutting and plant it in a new container with having good drainage facility. Water it sparingly and put it in a warm, sunny spot.

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3. Leaf Cuttings

While less common and more difficult, attempting to propagate Pilea peperomioides from the cuttings taken from the leaves can be fun. This method involves growing a single leaf with a small part of the stem intact.

Steps for Propagation by Leaf Cuttings:

Select a Healthy Leaf:

Take a softball-sized bunch of healthy, mature leaves, each of which has a small section of stem.

Make the Cut:

They will be made from a clean knife or scissors by cutting from the middle of the leaf with a little part of the stem.

Allow Callusing:

This will ensure that the cut end has formed a callus that will reduce water uptake, and the cutting is free from any diseases and pests that might be present on the source plant. This is handy in preventing it from rotting when the cutting is made to take the soil.

Plant the Cutting:

Place the cut end in a small container with a drainage hole and the potting mix should drain well. Another tip is to make sure that the seeds are kept in somewhat moist soil.

Provide Optimal Conditions:

Make sure the soil is brightly lit and keep the pot in an area with warm temperatures, but avoid direct sunlight. An alternative that might contribute to humidity is to cover the pot with a plastic bag, although one should leave a little crack for air circulation to prevent molding.

Wait for Growth:

For their new growth, the hedge may take several weeks to develop. Carry out these treatments diligently and patiently, as to ensure that the cutting gets both the water it needs and the light it needs to grow.

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Tips for Successful Propagation

Use Well-Draining Soil:

Pilea peperomioides can be grown in any typical potting mix but it requires good drainage. Common potting soil with added perlite or sand is fine.

Maintain Humidity:

The young plants and the cuttings need high humidity conditions. There is also the possibility to use a humidity tray or a plastic cover to maintain a high humidity level.

Avoid Overwatering:

One of the common errors that are made is overwatering the plants. However, it is recommended that the soil should be allowed to dry a little before it is watered again to avoid root rot.

Provide Adequate Light:

Indirect light and preferably a bright one. Do not place it in direct sun as it burns the foliage or in low light as it hinders the growth of the plant.

Be Patient:

Propagation can take time. Remember that it takes time for the skin to heal so do not give up on your care regime. New growth may take several weeks to appear on the scalp after a hair transplant.


One of the most enjoyable and easy projects that any grower can attempt is propagating the Chinese Money Plant. Regardless of the method used, propagation by division and stem or leaf cuttings make it possible for one to increase the number of plants sown and even gift this beautiful plant to others. If one is willing to spend a considerable amount of time and provide adequate care, one can propagate and grow new Chinese Money Plants and enjoy the pleasure of having them in different areas. Happy propagating!