Let’s crack the code to help your money tree grow better with fertilizer!
If your money tree seems to grow slowly, it might need more nutrients. Without the right food, it can become weak and not grow well. This article will explore what nutrients your money tree needs from fertilizer and how often to give it.
Typically, you should fertilize your money tree once a month during the growing season. In spring, use 12-6-6 high-nitrogen fertilizer to support the plant’s spring growth, switch to a balanced 10-10-10 during summer, and finally go with 3-10-10 during the fall for robust growth.
Even though the money tree can survive and grow without fertilizers, adding some fertilizer will benefit its growth and health.
In this article, we will answer all the questions regarding fertilizing a money tree so that you can choose the right fertilizer and use it in the right way to see healthy growth in your money tree.
Table Of Contents
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NPK fertilizer for money tree
There are various fertilizers available in the market for you to choose from. It can be daunting to understand the best fertilizer for your money tree. So, first, you need to understand the plant’s nutritional requirements.
Before getting the right fertilizer for your money tree, you must understand the best NPK ratio. NPK denotes nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. These elements are essential for the plants, but the requirement will vary from plant to plant.
When fertilizing a money tree, it is recommended to adjust the fertilizer based on the changing seasons.
It is best to use a high-nitrogen fertilizer such as a 12-6-6 in the spring months to support the plant’s spring growth.
As summer arrives, transitioning to a balanced fertilizer like a 20-20-20 or 10-10-10 is advisable.
Reducing the nitrogen quantity to around 3-10-10 when fall approaches can encourage healthy root systems, while the potassium content promotes flowering.
Following this fertilization schedule can help maintain the health and vitality of your money tree throughout the year.
However, you can keep it simple and go with a balanced fertilizer.
Let’s understand how these elements can help your money tree.
Nitrogen: Nitrogen is essential for the photosynthesis of plants. It also encourages the growth of stems and leaves.
Phosphorus: Encourages healthy root growth and helps in the cellular growth of plants.
Potassium: Potassium helps build up the immune system in plants. It also helps to regulate water throughout the plant.
The fertilizers contain other nutrients that assist the NPK and help to build protein and compounds.
When you choose a fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 20:20:20, it means that the fertilizer contains 20% nitrogen, 20% phosphorus, and 20% potassium, and the remaining 40% is made up of other nutrients.
What kind of fertilizer for the money tree?
There are two types of fertilizers available – organic and synthetic. Before you decide which one you want to opt for, understand the difference between the two.
Organic fertilizers comprise organic components that are not harmful to plants or the earth. However, organic fertilizers cannot start working immediately after application. Organic fertilizers need time to break down and will take time to show results.
Synthetic fertilizers are made of both organic and chemical components. Fertilizers are chemically processed, but the plants can absorb this much faster.
Once you have decided whether you want organic or synthetic fertilizer, you need to decide which texture of fertilizer you want. Based on this, the fertilizers can be either liquid or granular.
Liquid fertilizers are easy to dilute. These come in a powder form or solution form. You can put it into the soil or spray it on the plant. It will give a boost of nutrition to your plant.
Granular fertilizers come in pellets that you need to place in the soil. The nutrients get released slowly over time. These are ideal for fertilizing large areas.
There is another type of fertilizer called the slow-release fertilizer. It comes in the pellet form, just like the granular fertilizer, but it releases nutrients much slower than the granular fertilizers. Therefore, it will save the plant from getting shocked.
The most suitable fertilizer for your money tree is liquid fertilizer.
Our Top Picks:
The two best fertilizer options for your money trees are:
- Organic liquid fertilizer: Espoma Company Organic Indoor Plant Food
- Synthetic fertilizer: Jacks Classic 20-20-20 All Purpose Fertilizer.
They are the best in their category and work exceptionally well for a money tree and other houseplants.
Compost as fertilizers for money tree
Compost comprises natural and organic components rich in nutrition and can work as fertilizer for your money tree.
Add a small amount of compost and water the soil to distribute the nutrients evenly.
Using compost as fertilizer can have the following benefits:
- Improved soil structure
- Increased soil fertility
- Retains moisture
However, using compost also has some downsides, such as:
- Some compost might give a foul odor.
- Nutrients are not balanced.
- It might retain too much moisture.
Therefore, you should only add a small amount of compost so as not to cause any harm to the money tree. If you use compost, add elements like sand or perlite to make the soil well-draining.
Are coffee grounds good for money trees?
Many people prefer using coffee grounds as an organic fertilizer, but applying them directly to the money tree will form a mulch and retain more moisture than required.
It would be best to use coffee grounds in moderation on money trees. If used in the right way, coffee grounds can have these benefits:
- Promotes stem growth
- Prevents dropping of leaves
- Adds nitrogen to the plant
Some ways of using coffee grounds on your money tree are composting with the coffee grounds, making compost tea out of them, and watering the plants with diluted leftover coffee.
Using coffee grounds directly can have adverse effects, making the soil extremely acidic and burning the plant’s leaves.
Fertilizing the money tree correctly
You should not fertilize your money tree with full strength but rather dilute the fertilizer.
Using full-strength fertilizers might be too intense for the money tree and burn the roots, preventing the roots from functioning correctly.
After getting a fertilizer, read the instructions on the label and use half of the instructed dose. For example, if it suggests using 1 tsp of fertilizer, you should use 1/2 tsp instead.
If you are using compost on your money tree, you only need to add a handful to the top layer of the soil.
How often to fertilize a money tree?
It will help if you fertilize your money tree once a month during the growing period. However, refrain from adding too much fertilizer, which can damage the plant’s roots and leaves.
Fertilizing every month during the summer and spring is ideal for the money tree. During this time, the money tree grows and uses a lot of energy; adding some fertilizer will bring outstanding results, and you will see fast growth in your money tree.
During the dormant period, the winter season, the money tree likes to rest and doesn’t grow actively. Therefore, it does not require any fertilizers in winter. If you add fertilizer during this period, it will have adverse effects on the plant.
How to fertilize a money tree?
The right way of fertilizing your money tree will depend on the fertilizer you give. Let’s look at some of the methods mentioned below.
- First, choose the fertilizer you want to give to your money tree.
- If you want to use compost, take a handful of it and apply it to the top layer of the soil every two weeks.
- If you use a liquid fertilizer, dilute it to half strength and water your money tree with it.
- For coffee grounds, prepare compost tea or compost mix and give it to your money tree. You should not add this too often to your plant.
What happens if you over-fertilize your money tree?
Over-fertilizing occurs when you add a strong dose of fertilizer to the money tree or fertilizer it frequently. Over-fertilizing does not help the plant’s growth but causes several issues that harm the plant.
If you have an over-fertilized money tree, you may notice some of these:
- Yellow or brown tips on the leaves
- Stunted growth
- Salt buildup on the soil
- Crisp brown spots on leaves
- Slow growth
If you notice any of these, you should consider taking the dosage of the fertilizer on the number of times you give it to your money tree.
How to fix an over-fertilized money tree?
If you see any signs of over-fertilization in your money tree, you must act immediately to eliminate the fertilizer burn.
Let’s take a look at the ways in which you can fix your over-fertilized money tree.
- First, you need to get rid of the damaged parts, as they cannot be saved. Prune the damaged leaves for roots with a pair of sterilized pruners or scissors.
- In case of minor damage, you can flush the excess salt buildup by placing the plant under running water. Let excess water drain out of the drainage holes.
- Another way of getting rid of salt buildup is to scrape the top layer of the soil and replace it with fresh soil mix.
- If the damages are severe, you will need to repot your money tree using a fresh soil mix.
- Avoid fertilizing for at least a month and let the plant recover.
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Money trees do not require high doses of fertilizers, so you can use a fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 10:10:10 or 20:20:20 and dilute the dose to half strength.
You can also opt for 12-6-6 to support the plant’s spring growth and switch to 3-10-10 during the fall.
You can fertilize your money tree once a month during the growing season and stop fertilizing in the dormant period.
Fertilizing is essential for the growth of the money tree. Using fertilizers correctly on your money tree can enhance its growth.
You can use coffee grounds as a liquid fertilizer or use compost to fertilize your money tree. You only need to make sure that you are not overfeeding the plant.