So I got this money tree (Pachira aquatica) like four months ago. Since then it's lost over a dozen leaves (not leaflets) and it's grown over half a dozen new ones. The first of the new ones also fell off this week. The shed leaves are yellowish-brown.

When I remove all the dead leaves, it looks very healthy (or let's say aesthetic because I have no idea what a healthy plant looks like) but I'm worried that so much decay and growth is pretty stressful for the plant.

I keep it inside in a fairly dark room, right next to (not in front of) the window. I water it with a lot of water about every three weeks (the soil is usually still moist when I do that). The temperature is around 20 degrees Celsius and hard to adjust. I've moved it twice in those four months which might be part of the explanation why it's not doing well (It was next to the window first, then I moved it somewhere darker and then back when I thought it needed more light. Neither move seemed to change anything.

What do I need to pay attention to?

2 Answers 2


The loss of leaves is most likely due to lack of light as Stormy said. The reason it may not seem like it helps each time you move it is because it's still recovering from the last time you moved it ;). Plants that are in too low of light will often not show any symptoms for weeks so it is just catching up after the change from the darker spot you had it. Likewise, after being put back into a lighter spot, it's going to take a while to recover. One of the hard things about working with plants is they operate on a totally different time scale than us humans do. Put this tree in the brightest indirect light you have and it will probably bounce back after a while. Keep an eye on it and if it is still dropping leaves, post some pictures here. Check the undersides of leaves and stems to check for any insect activity.


Joooeey...why are you putting this plant in total darkness? It needs light to make its own food. When there is not enough light a plant will start dropping photosynthetic factories that are old and in disrepair and with no light, plants start dumping high metabolic material in order to survive. The older and lower leaves in particular. All business. Light is the gold, the energy that plants convert in photosynthesis with CO2, macro and micro chemicals, water to make their own food and thus grow leaves, stems, roots, and to produce flowers and fruit/seed. Without light the plant is dying, older, less useful material first.

Without light the plant is not able to use the water you are giving it and the roots sit in water without air and will most certainly rot soon.

Please ask more questions so we are able to fill in some gaps to enable you and this plant to be successful!

You have to provide some pictures. Tell us more detail. Keep it in one spot preferably not in direct sunlight through the windows. Tell us what kind of soil is in the pot, what you have done or not done with fertilizer, is there just potting soil in your pot? When do you water? On a schedule or do you wait to water when the soil is dry on the surface down about a half to a full inch?

Hope we are able to help you!

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