Pachira (money tree) trimming, rooting, and replanting.
I've had a pachira (braided) since 2007. It's been staying green ever since then, sitting on my office desk. I've watered it once very two weeks and it stays healthy.
My Replanting Efforts
I had been wanting to replant the plant for a long time, and finally got around to it about a week and a half ago.
Lacking proper knowledge, I used some standard organic potting soil that I still had in a bag. During the process, I also realized that there isn't much coming out of these trunks in terms of roots.
After replanting in the new soil, I watered it, figuring it might want something to drink, having been dry at the time of replanting.
Already, by the next day, some leaves were turning yellow. Over the next few days more and more turned yellow, and a couple started turning dry brown.
That's when I started researching on these forums and found great recommendations from Josh and others who seem experienced with pachiras.
So I hurried over to Lowe's, and with the help of an old green-thumbed lady there, found the best components I could. They didn't have pumice or any sort of soft lava rock. It was all hard stuff. So the mix I ended up using was a blend of orchid mix (this gave me some large-sized perlite, some untreated bark, and some charcoal), standard perlite, and Sta-Green soil mix. When I blended it, I used most of the bag of perlite, a little of the Sta-Green, and all of the orchid mix.
Using this new mix, I replanted the pachira again. I also plucked off some of the "hands" that weren't looking so good. I dipped 4 of them in root hormone and put them in some small pots using the same soil blend. I was hoping to root those little guys as Josh had explained in another thread. So far they aren't doing so good. Two are really yellowed.
The Current State of Things
What I still have left of the pachira seems to be doing okay back in my office with the new soil. I've only watered it once since the second replanting, with 20-10-10 Miracle-Gro.
What I Need Help With
This plant is looking sparse and gangly now. I'd really like to get some new pachira rooted from cuttings as well. I don't know if the leaves I'm trying to root will survive.
I'm wondering if I should do some serious trimming on this main tree. I need help knowing exactly how to proceed with this, and if you think it would be a good idea. If I can get new growth from the stumps, and create new trees from the clippings, then I'd like to do something like that.
Here are some pictures for reference.
When I first bought the tree in 2007:
How the tree looked at the time of the first replanting:
How it looks now, with yellow and brown leaves removed:
Close-up of the trunks:
In the picture below, I've labeled some cut points. I'm not sure what is best to accomplish my goals. Please let me know which of these cut points you think would be best for getting new growth out of the old trunks, and root-able trees out of the cuttings.