Apartment plants

Pachira aquatica

Question: pachira aquatica

Hi, my name is Monica and for a month I have a pachira aquatica at home. The vase of this plant seems small to me due to its size. I have to put it in a bigger pot and then with more soil available, or I have to leave it like this, but it seems sacrificed to me! Do these plants need a lot of soil or do they live well even with little land available?
Thank you very much

Answer: pachira aquatica

Dear Monica,
the pachira is a plant native to South America; in nature it lives in places with a fairly warm and humid climate, and over the years it becomes a real tree, up to 10-15 m tall. At home it is kept in a pot, also because it produces a fairly small root system, given its size; generally does not like to live in excessively large spaces, and in addition to this the small size of the container also helps to keep the plant within a size that can be managed in a houseplant: moving your pachira in a very large vase will only serve to favor its rapid growth , and to make it become a plant more than 3 meters high that you can keep without problems in the apartment. You should therefore keep your pachira in a not too large vase; clear that, over the years, it is good to increase the size of the container, but keeping it always a few centimeters wider than the size of the stem; in addition to this, since the plant lives in very little land, replacing this soil frequently guarantees a constant supply of mineral salts. If you can't repot the pachira every year, at least sprinkle fresh and rich soil on the surface of the pot, as you see the soil level drop; there are also special soils on the market, very rich, to be used only for topping up the jar, without making repotting necessary every year. I remind you that the most problematic time for your pachira will be winter, and summer; this is because these plants in nature can enjoy a decidedly humid climate, very different from what they can find in the home, where the heating system and the air conditioner make the air very dry. If you do not have the possibility to move your pachira in the garden, or on the terrace, during the summer months, remember to frequently spray the canopy with demineralized water, and carry out this operation even in the months in which the domestic heating system is active. Instead, your plant can withstand drought very well, and it does not like excessive watering and water stagnation; then water sparingly, but vaporize often. More or less once a month, from April to October, provide a fertilizer for flowering plants, to enrich the soil; if the exposure and the climate are ideal the pachira produces beautiful white flowers, although it is not very common to enjoy the flowers in the apartment.