In traditional feng shui, certain plants—referred to as money plants or money trees—are thought to enhance wealth and foster prosperity. But as with any feng shui symbol, it is important to be reasonable about your expectations. Feng shui practices are one part of an overall lifestyle, not a guarantee of health, happiness, or wealth. So choose plants for your home because you enjoy them, not because you expect them to fill your bank account!
Choosing a Money Plant
There is some confusion in feng shui as to which plant species should be considered the proper money plant. The truth is you can use any healthy, lush plant because the significance of the symbol is in the plant's energy, not its name. Its energy of growth is what you hope to see reflected in your financial situation.
Picking a money plant comes down to personal preference. Consider what would look best in your space, as well as how much care the plant requires. Succulents and tropical plants are generally good choices because they are relatively easy to maintain, even for a gardening novice. Give them plenty of light and sufficient watering, and they should remain healthy. If your space doesn't offer enough light, consider using artificial lighting or choosing a plant that can tolerate low light.
It's also possible that a living plant just isn't for you. If you don't have a green thumb or an appropriate space for a plant, an artificial money plant might be a good option. You also can use vibrant images of lush foliage to bring the energy of abundance and growth into your space.
3 Common Types of Money Plants
While any healthy plant will do, there are some common species used as feng shui money plants:
- Crassula ovata: Also known as the jade plant, this succulent has an abundant, happy feel to it and looks good in most homes and offices. Jade plants need a lot of light to thrive, so be sure your space is bright enough. But they don't require much water, as succulents store reserves in their leaves. Jade plants are easy to grow for most people and can assume a bonsai-like appearance with time. They are susceptible to mealy bugs and other pests, though they are rarely killed by them.
- Pachira aquatica: This tropical plant with a braided trunk is commonly called the money tree. Also referred to as P. glabra (which is actually another similar species), it is a type of bonsai tree that can grow quite tall. The plant needs plenty of light, as well as consistent watering. It is susceptible to scale and fungus gnats.
- Feng shui money tree: Often used in classical feng shui applications, this cure is sometimes sold with coins "growing" on a living plant. It also might come decorated with various crystals for added emphasis. Frequently, the plant sold as a feng shui money tree with coins and crystals is actually just an embellished Pachira aquatica.
Placement of a Money Plant
In the world of energy, like attracts like. So if your money plant is thriving, the energy attracted to it will be healthy and prosperous. But if your plant is withering, this will have a negative effect on the surrounding energy.
In feng shui, your home is divided into bagua areas linked to certain aspects of your life. Each of these areas is associated with a feng shui element that a money plant might be able to nourish, bringing better energy to the space. Thus, some locations are better than others to display a money plant.
- It should come as no surprise that the money area, or southeast area of your space, is the best place for a money plant. It's the location considered ideal for conducting financial tasks, and the money plant can enhance that energy.
- The health area (or east area) is also welcoming of a money plant, as the element linked to the area is wood. Plants also represent vibrant wood energy, so they can bring nourishing energy to this space.
- The fame area (or south area) is associated with the fire feng shui element. The wood element of the money plant is said to feed the fire element, enhancing the energy of the space.
The worst feng shui location for a money plant is in the bathroom. This is because bathrooms, with their many drains, can sap energy from a space, creating the potential for your wealth to be flushed away.