Plant of the month: Pilea
These unusual plants are having somewhat of a moment on social media. We've been plant-crazy for quite a while so we're enjoying the trend for people getting green-fingered in their homes, however small the space.
We've had a lot of customers coming into the shops looking specifically for a Chinese Money Plant (as the Pilea is also known), as word has spread that we've been getting a great supply of this ornamental variety. As well as a Chinese Money Plant, the Pilea is also sometimes known as a Missionary Plant, or even a Pancake Plant! As it can be quite hard to find, which is why word is spreading fast about the little gems in our Stoke Newington and Clerkenwell stores! We've got potted up plants in a variety of sizes and lovely pots, and also just the plants themselves available in a larger size.
It's such an unusual shape with an arty sculptural quality, it's not hard to see why everyone is gong crazy for these exotic houseplants. One of the best things about the Pilea, in addition to its graphic radial growth shape and attractive flat round leaves is the fact that they are easy to propagate. If you're new to the world of houseplant care, this just means taking a cutting and growing a brand new plant from the original. Pileas will grow 'baby' plants at the base of the stalk. If you slice these off from the main plant with a clean sharp knife, you can then simply push them into some moist soil in a new pot. After about 4-6 weeks they should have grown well-established roots in their new home and will start growing their own new leaves. Often Pilea owners propagate these baby plants to give to friends – which we think is such a lovely idea!
Location: It likes quite a light room, but no direct sunlight. You might find you need to rotate the pot every few weeks so that the leaves grow evenly from the centre, rather than being weighted on the side of the light source.
Watering: About once a week depending on conditions. Don't let the soil and roots get soggy, but don't let the plant completely dry out either as you might with some succulents or cacti. You'll know if your Pilea is in need of a drink because the leaves will look a little droopy!
Size: Pilea tend to grow to around 30cm diameter, and grow relatively fast.
Stop by one of our shops to see our range of unusual houseplants and be spoilt for choice on what to add to your very own little plant jungle.