How to Braid a Money Tree
A braided money tree plant is a beautiful and inexpensive accent to a home or office. Although the branches of the money tree do not naturally entwine on their own, you will often see money trees with braided trunks. This particular house plant sustains hand braiding very well. If you have a young money tree plant, here is a guide to braiding its trunk.
Braiding is most successful when the money tree is healthy. If necessary, re-pot the house plant in a larger pot where the roots can spread out.
Make sure it is adequately watered. The soil should be kept slightly damp, but not wet, and never totally dry. Watering once every two or three weeks is sufficient for most plants. If the leaves of the money tree turn brown, you need to water more. Don't worry if the leaves tend to break off easily, this is typical of money trees.
When there are at least 3 stalks that are green (less than 1/2 inch in diameter), they can be braided. Begin by sticking two stakes on either side of the money tree; each stake should reach as high as the leafy part of the money tree. Gently start the braid from the base of the plant by crossing one branch over the other.
Keep the braid slightly loose, leaving enough distance between each successive crossing of branches so that the money tree does not snap. Work your way up until you reach a point where there are too many leaves to continue.
Tie a string loosely around the end of the braid, and tie the ends of the string to the two stakes. This will keep the braid in place as the money tree grows.
It may be several months before you can continue the braid. When the money tree has grown at least 6-8 inches, remove the string and extend the braid a little more. Tie it off once again and anchor it with the stakes.
At some point you may need to replace the money tree stakes with taller ones. Don't forget to re-pot your money tree when the plant has grown too big for its current pot. The only way the money tree can keep growing taller is if the root system has space to grow.
If you accidentally break a branch while braiding, put the two ends back together immediately, and wrap the seam with grafting tape, or even duct tape. The money tree will heal in about a month and you can remove the tape and resume braiding.
© Had2Know 2010