Pilea Species, Chinese Money Plant, Missionary Plant, Pancake Plant, UFO Plant

Pilea peperomioides

Family: Urticaceae
Genus: Pilea (py-LEE-uh) (Info)
Species: peperomioides



Water Requirements:

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Sun Exposure:

Light Shade



Foliage Color:

Medium Green


6-12 in. (15-30 cm)

12-18 in. (30-45 cm)


15-18 in. (38-45 cm)


USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Where to Grow:

Suitable for growing in containers



Bloom Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:


Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

From herbaceous stem cuttings

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

San Francisco, California

Valdosta, Georgia

Honolulu, Hawaii

Lafayette, Louisiana

Columbus, North Carolina

Austin, Texas

Richmond, Virginia

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On May 25, 2018, Kell from (Zone 9b) wrote:

So similar to Peperomia polybotrya, Coin Leaf Peperomia. The leaves of Pilea peperomioides are rounded while Peperomia polybotrya comes to a point. The flowers are different also. [[email protected]]

This article, A Chinese puzzle solved - Pilea peperomioides, discusses the search for this plant's origins as well as its perfect growing conditions.
"Dali itself, at around 6,000 feet elevation (11800m), is renowned for its weather, which is spring-like throughout the year, but the peaks of Tsangshan at almost 14,000 feet (4,250m), were still carrying snow on our visit in late April and early May. Therefore, it seems likely that P. peperomioides survives winter t... read more


On Feb 17, 2018, NCMstGardener from Columbus, NC (Zone 7b) wrote:

I believe the zone information is in error.

Although it can be kept outside in warmer regions, Pilea peperomioides is only suitable as a houseplant in most locations. It doesnt appreciate temperatures below 10 C/50 F and should be protected from sudden temperature swings.


On Jun 27, 2017, halo2something from Milan,
Italy wrote:

Beautiful plant. I disagree with light requirements mentioned here, my pilea p. grows on east-facing windowsill with no light damage, producing constantly luscious leaves and "babies". Also, in winter it doesn't go dormant per se, but, it's better not to keep it very moist because it have tendency with shorter days and excessive moist to loose bottom leaves rapidly. To be honest I don't keep it all time moist in hot summer as well.
I saw specimens taller than 45 centimeters.
For propagation I wouldn't recommend to remove early stolons with 4-5 leaves, they grow bigger faster then they are still connected to mother plant. Wait till it's at least up to 15 cm tall.


On Jun 19, 2013, lottiemck from Brighton,
United Kingdom wrote:

This is a question rather than a comment... I have lots of these Chinese money plants, yet one of them appears to be going a purply-brown colour and a bit spotty. It is not looking too well, but I don't know why this only seems to be happening with one of my plants... Any care tips??


On Feb 8, 2011, steadycam3 from Houston Heights, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

This plant from the yunnan region of China was brought to Kew Gardens about 1906 by Forest but material was archived in Scotland. Kew horticulturists were unfamiliar with the plant despite its was being grown all over England and other parts of Europe as a houseplant. How did this happen? Subsequent investigation by Kew revealed that it was brought to Scandinavia by a missionary to China around 1946 and passed along in families and to friends until it was grown widely across Europe.. It is usually not widely sold in the trade. Kew had many inquiries about the plant and eventually investigated, finding the above information. The plant bears male and female flowers on the same plant and bears male more often than female flowers. It needs cooler temps to bloom so while being kept as a housep... read more