When it comes to enhancing our homes, houseplants are, for many of us, a logical go-to. While historically houseplants were an indulgence reserved for the upper classes, many more people today bring plants into their homes, to liven up the atmosphere as well as to include a bit of nature in the house.

For those interested in feng shui, an appealing plant to consider may be the Chinese money tree. According to feng shui tradition, the positive energy that a money tree provides can bring good luck during life’s milestones and transitions, and can enhance the overall abundance of the home. It’s thought that, with these positive energies present, wealth will follow. It’s no wonder, then, that the Chinese money tree is one of the most popular houseplants in the world.

What Is the Chinese Money Tree?

Several plants can serve as money trees in the feng shui philosophy, but the plant most commonly referenced is the Pachira aquatica, a type of Malabar chestnut tree. These trees often feature what appears to be a twisted trunk, and they can grow to up to 50 feet tall in the wild. For the household variety, most of this type of money tree will grow to about four or five feet tall, making them easy to keep in the home. But they do require consistent light and watering to thrive.

Pachira aquatica may come with leaves that resemble coins. Many times, such trees will also come decorated with crystals, to add to the effect.

Another plant in the money tree family is the Crassula ovata, or the jade tree. This type of tree also needs a lot of light but, as a succulent, doesn’t require much water. Jade trees are very easy to grow, even for people who aren’t adept at caring for plants. They have a long lifespan, which can add to the positive atmosphere of your home for many years to come.

For those who don’t feel confident in their ability to care for a living plant, it’s also possible to keep an artificial money tree. While you won’t have the same positive oxygen effects, the appearance of the plant is just as important in bringing positive energy into your home. In the feng shui philosophy, a dying plant will bring negative energy, so it may be for the best to have an artificial tree if you don’t think you can care for a living one.

Picking Out the Right Plant

Whether you want to bring in a Chinese money tree for the positive energy, or you’re just interested in houseplants in general, any form of greenery can help improve the look and feel of your home. It’s important to consider your home’s light environment, as well as the amount of care you can give a plant when picking one out. And, if feng shui has piqued your interest, there are plenty of ways plants can help enhance your living or work environment—and plenty of resources out there for you to consult if you’re interested in learning more.