Lunaria Annua ‘Money Plant’

August 4th, 2008

Silver Dollar PlantI got this plant courtesy of my grandfather, it is one of his favorites and always grew at his house in a large mass planting.

This is one interesting plant with many phases for you to enjoy.

It is a biennial, which means it lives for two years and then dies. The first year it grows around 6 inches or so high, it takes the snow without losing it’s green, and then the second year it rapidly shoots up to spring to as high as 3 or 4 feet high and has bright purple flowers. It flowers in early Spring when there is not very much else of height flowering like it does, more or less between tulips and irises. It then slowly forms seed pods which then flake away revealing shiny silver disks, which give it it’s many names.

My grandfather called them “silver dollars” the more common names though seem to be “Money Plant” or “Honesty.” Apparently the plant can make you money as well. My grandfather always insisted that you could take the dried stalks with the shiny seed pod remnants and sell them to florists for big bucks. I don’t know about that, I’ve never tried it, but I do like this plant.

It reseeds very very well, you can literally just toss the seeds on the soil and they’ll grow. I cut down mature plants and just shake the seeds off and where they land they will germinate, but it isn’t really invasive, if it sprouts somewhere you do not want it to it is very easy to control.

Since it is a biennial I recommend planting your seeds one year, holding some back, and sowing those the next, so you get staggered plantings so that eventually you’ll have some plants blooming every year.

Lunaria Annua Money PlantI’ve grown this plant in both full sun and part shade, even full shade, it doesn’t seem to care. I have noticed where it has grown in less than idea conditions (a seed germinates somewhere I didn’t mean for it to, but I let it grow anyways) it doesn’t grow as high or get as many blossoms, so it seems to really react well to good fertile soil, but that is about it.

I want to make an offer to blog readers, my seed pods are mostly ready about now, so if anyone mails me a self-addressed stamped envelope I will mail you back free seeds so you can get your own started. This offer is only good until the end of August though, and if like 100 people send me letters I may run out, but I’ll do my best to send everyone free seeds.

You can send your envelopes to

1836 N Harrison Rd
East Lansing, MI 48823

79 Responses to “Lunaria Annua ‘Money Plant’”

  1. Mrs. Greenhands  Says:

    I love the money plant – this first year flowers are so pretty and the second year “money” pods made great fall arrangements!

  2. Daisy  Says:

    My grandmother used to LOVE her money plants. I used to love to pick apart the “silver dollars” to get the seeds out.

  3. Anne  Says:

    Thanks for this post! I’m planning my front garden/landscaping for next year (currently smothering the lawn so we can start fresh with non-mowable plants), and my color scheme is black and white (and silver and purple). This will be perfect!

  4. Valerie Trout  Says:

    Hi…your free money plant seed offer was until the end of August. Unfortunately, I just now saw your offer. Do you have any left? I can send an envelope should you have any…..THANKS.

  5. Administrator  Says:

    yes, I still have some

  6. Administrator  Says:

    Remember… send a stamped envelop. I had one person just send a plain envelop and it was international too.

  7. Michelle  Says:

    I was thrilled to find your website and discussion about the Money Plant. I too, have fond memories of this plant growing in my grandmother’s garden. She passed away and my cousin cleared her garden, and somehow, no seeds survived. Anyway, I found more of this plant during a walk and took some seed pods to harvest. Knowing nothing about growing this plant, I am happy to see your info. about planting this beautiful plant which will help me keep the memory of my special grandmother alive in my garden! Thank you!

  8. Lovely  Says:

    Hi Chris,

    I got the free seeds today, thank you so much.I’m so excited to have my own started.

    GOD bless you :-)

  9. Administrator  Says:

    Yes

  10. Mon Good  Says:

    Honestly,I just read your generous offer for seeds from your Honesty plants. I know I missed the deadline. Just thought I’d check to see if you still have some. Of course, with the economic
    situation of our country, maybe you want to grow all the money plants you can. Guess it is no joking matter. Love to hear from you.
    M. Good

  11. Administrator  Says:

    Yes, I still got some. Send away.

  12. Christina  Says:

    I live in an arid climate and most of my plants are indoors. Can the seeds grow in a pot? What care will it need?

  13. Vino  Says:

    I planted the seeds in the spring of 2006 – during the summer the leaves of the plant grew and grew (looking almost like a cabbage patch) but no flowers came up. I also shared the seeds with other people who had the same experience. Does it usually take this long to flower? The leaves are very well developed.

  14. Pam  Says:

    I am VERY, very late in reading this posting. Might there be seeds left? If yes, I’d be happy to drop an envelope into the mail system.

  15. Administrator  Says:

    I think so Pam, I have to remember where I stashed them, but I know there were some left.

  16. Pam  Says:

    Thanks – I’ll drop a SASE into the mail!

  17. Nancy  Says:

    Oooh I hope I’m not too late…I’ll send a SASE today!! :)

  18. Administrator  Says:

    Alright folks, I’m out of seeds.

  19. Nancy  Says:

    Hey thank you so so much for the seeds…they arrived on Saturday.. =)

  20. zoe  Says:

    OH! I just found the seeds I got from you last fall. I totally forgot about them. I’m so excited to get them in the ground this spring. I am also sharing some with a few friends so we can all enjoy this plant! Thank you again for sharing.

  21. JoAnn Phillips  Says:

    Hi..I actually spotted this plant last year at the park where I walk my Dog and wanted to pick the pods for the seeds and never did. Well today I saw the pink flowers and the green pods, so I pick two of the pods. Do I have to remove the seeds to dry out or can I plant them intact? I remember this plant from my Mom-in-Law who has passed, any guidance is greatly appreciated.
    Thanks….

  22. Kelly  Says:

    My grandmother just gave me the plant with the seeds still inside. She instructed me to let it dry out more and then remove the seeds and plant them in the fall.
    Is the fall the ideal time to plan? Or should I be doing it now in the summer?

    Thanks so much!

  23. Robin  Says:

    I sowed seeds this year but do not know what the young plant looks like. Are the leaves alternate or opposite on the stem? I ask because there are two distinct plants growing in the seeded area, one with opposite leaves and one with alternate leaves. Which one do I want to pull out as a weed? Thank you!

  24. Administrator  Says:

    see here http://pics.davesgarden.com/pics/Meredith79_1236434629_489.jpg

  25. Robin  Says:

    The link indicates that you can not embed an image in this post and therefore I was denied acess. I tried going directly to the davesgarden site but still can not enlarge this thumbnail from Meredith79. At any rate, one word will give me my answer…opposing or alternate?

    Thank you.

  26. Administrator  Says:

    Try this then:

    http://images.google.com/images?sourceid=navclient&rlz=1T4DKUS_enUS280US280&q=lunaria%20annua%20seedling&um=1&ie=UTF-8&sa=N&hl=en&tab=wi

  27. Nanette  Says:

    Thank you for this log on Money Plants and for the last link as both are very informative.

    I’ve been carrying around a few seed pods in my wallet for the last year from my mothers garden. I took them before she died last June with hopes I would one day be able to grow them and introduce my adult children and grandchildren to them.

    I live in NE Florida. Should I plant them in full sun or part sun/shade. Full sun here is extremely hot and I don’t really want to lose them to the heat unless they will make it.

    Thanks~N

  28. Trish Lindsey Jaggers  Says:

    Thanx for this great blog on these terrific plants. I received my start over thirty years ago from my husband’s grandmother, and I’ve grown these for years at my old homesite and did not realize that they were biennial until reading this blog.

    I still own the old place and rent it out. Several years ago, one of the tenants tried to kill out all the ground cover and money plants–almost succeeded before I evicted him. Only a few of the plants remained and blossomed (seeded). I’m now desperately trying to get a good stand of them at my current home (same farm, different house) from the seeds that I recovered.

    The seedlings are up (and it’s September), and I’m wondering: do I need to protect them over the winter? I know that they do better in the shade (partial sun) than in full sun. I have them planted on the north side of my southern Kentucky home. Will they survive uncovered? or should I throw some leaves over them for good measure?

  29. Administrator  Says:

    I live in mid-michigan, zone 5, mine do fine uncovered. Unless you’re a really high elevation I imagine you’ll do fine in Kentucky.

  30. Shikha  Says:

    Hi,

    Just saw your blog and wondering if you still have the seeds? Please let me know and thanks for the offer.

    Regards,
    Shikha

  31. Administrator  Says:

    Yes I have some.

  32. Administrator  Says:

    Yes, send me your self address stamped envelopes. And if I do not have seeds now, I’ll wait and send them when I will have them (late Summer).

  33. Angela  Says:

    Soy de Santiago de Chile, clima seco ahora comienza el Otoño, qué epoca del año es mejor plantar las semillas y es mejor con o sin sol?
    Agradezco tu ayuda

  34. Angela  Says:

    I am from Santiago of Chile, dry climate now begins the Autumn, what epoch of the year is better to plant the seeds and is better with or without the Sun?
    I am grateful for your help

  35. karen  Says:

    If I send you and envelope can you send me some seeds? My husbands dad used to grow these in NC and we have been trying to find seeds for 5 years. We live in TX now and I’m sure they would grow here too. Thanks, Karen p.s. send me the address too!

  36. Administrator  Says:

    Yes, I will still send seeds. Though it may have to wait until fall

  37. karen  Says:

    Thanks! Our envelope is on it’s way! Karen

  38. Janie Orenstein  Says:

    I live in coastal Los Angeles and just planted about six silver dollar seeds next to some ferns and camilla bushes. Do you think silver dollars can grow in a coastal climate (ranging from 50 to 78 degrees)? My seeds were sent to me by an aunt in Cleveland, Ohio. If you think this bush can flourish in my climate zone (24) could you send me some seeds (if you have any left) to-add to my too small amount? Thank you for your help.

  39. Administrator  Says:

    I’m sure it’ll grow fine and if you send me a SASE I will send you some seeds (in the fall, when I have more).

    But… it needs sun for best growth, if you’ve planted it next to ferns I’m guessing it is shady.

  40. Janie Orenstein  Says:

    Thank you for letting me know about the need for sun. I will hunt for a new location. Thank you for your offer of seeds. I will send the envelope as you requested.

  41. eric  Says:

    any seeds left at this date?

  42. penny clay  Says:

    is it better to plant seeds in the spring or fall i live in Alabama where the weather does not get extremely cold winters

  43. Administrator  Says:

    I’ve had success either way, in nature the plant’s seeds will naturally germinate in the fall. So that is probably the best time.

  44. Janina Grimsley  Says:

    I am looking for seeds or a aeedling or two. I have been trying for a year to grow some from seeds. They took forever to sprout 12 out of 42 seeds sprouted. Only two have made it to 6 inches and 6 leaves.
    Help! I am desperate to have one.

  45. Virginia Rodriguez  Says:

    I was given 3 envelopes at a trade show this week. I am going to plant the 3 pkgs. I excited to see them come up.

  46. M Taylor  Says:

    Thanks for the clearest description I’ve encountered about the biennial nature of the money plant. I’ve always been curious about what happens to the plant over the first winter, and your posting indicates that “it takes the snow without losing its green.” Here in the DC-MD area, I’ve sown seeds about the time I think the plant in its natural state would drop seeds (i.e., August/September). But then whatever grows (not much) until winter seems to die. And then in the spring, nothing comes back! Perhaps I should plant the seeds in the spring to get them more established for the first winter.

    Any suggestions?

  47. Administrator  Says:

    When the plant drops seed and when the seeds sprout are not the same thing. Many seeds need an over wintering, or do best after over wintering, and then sprouting in Spring. I’m not sure if Money Plant is one such seed, but it is certainly worth a try.

    The other thing to make sure they’re not being cut back by man or beast unbeknownst to you.

  48. Lyndon Eveland  Says:

    I have seeds available from an old homestead near me am harvesting about 300 plants

  49. Lorraine Papineau  Says:

    this is so awesome, I hope you have some seeds left. God bless you

  50. Vicki Smith  Says:

    I too remember these seed pods in my Grandma’s house in Michigan as a facinating arrangement that I couldn’t keep my hands off….had no idea of this history until I googled today. Any chance to be in line for next August 2012 seeds? Thanks for the memories…

  51. Adele  Says:

    I’m in Davis CA, with mild winters. I noticed this plant in the local landscape for the first time. I have always admired it and used it in collages and paintings (with good luck and good results I might add!). I would like to send along an envelope. Hope it’s not too out of season for you. Thanks!

  52. Nancy Hosford  Says:

    I would love some seeds how do I get some!

  53. Kathy Foster  Says:

    I would like to send you a self-addressed envelope if you still have any seeds. THANKS..

  54. cindy lutz  Says:

    I have some seeds that were given to me by my sister, who had received her seeds from a lady she met while in Japan. The Japanese lady told my sister that if you are given the seeds as a gift then you shall be prosperous and good fortune shall follow you.

  55. Josh  Says:

    I’m in Reston, VA…near D.C. It was my Grandmother who had Lunaria in the garden. Today I work in the industry and unfortunately would categorize money plant as a weed. Where can I get some?

  56. Katie Moga  Says:

    I too would love some! Do you still have some to give?

  57. Alex Hall  Says:

    I am a new gardener and have no idea how to harvest or plant seeds. We seem to have some beautiful money plants in our garden – but could someone give me an idiot’s guide to how you go about harvesting and planting seeds, and how/where to store the ones which we hold back for next year, as is suggested.

  58. Administrator  Says:

    To harvest I cut the stems, stick them in a garbage bag, and shake shake shake.

    I keep the seeds in the bag.

    Planting, you can just toss them on the ground. You can also skip storage and take a plant you’ve cut down, and shake it over the area you want to seed. Skip the storage step. You don’t need to wait until the next spring to plant, you can plant in the fall.

  59. Betsy  Says:

    Thank you for the wonderful detailed information. I live in Southern California and am hopeful that I can grow the seeds that I have.

  60. Not A Great Gardener  Says:

    We just got four envelopes of Money Plant seeds as a giveaway from a credit union exhibiting at a local community festival. Should I plant them now for next spring (now being September in the mid-Atlantic), or save and plant in the spring next year? And what about water–our yard has areas that are high and dry, and some that are low and wet. What’s best?

    Thanks!

  61. Administrator  Says:

    Plant now, in nature the plant is planting itself now as it drops seeds, so it is the natural time to do so.

  62. June A Jenkins  Says:

    I am a old Senior citizen and planted this plant in the Mid West…but now want to plant them in Idaho around the Boise area. Will they survive the winters…do you think covering them with cheese cloth would help if they are too cold intolerant?
    I have seeds from some of the flowers I purchased. The flowers are different …some have already been cleaned up and the others are still green. I was so thrilled to read all the comments you have been sent. You are a fine person and believe me your Granddad is smiling and has been for sometime now. God Bless you.

  63. Andrew Cannon  Says:

    Do you have any seeds? I really enjoy this plant and I, at least, think that it is very nice. I would really appreciate if you had some seeds to send me, Thanks!

  64. lynn  Says:

    I would very much appreciate it if you have some more seeds to share to me.I really love those plants.Thank you very much.

  65. Cathi  Says:

    I got some seeds from a plant out of my mom’s yard in California in November. I brought them back to Nebraska with hopes of planting them here. My question is, do they need to go thru a cold period to get them ready for planting in the spring?

  66. Chris  Says:

    Today I planted some seeds I bought for 75 cents at a closing down sale. I live in Queensland Australia. My mother had a dry flower arrangement of Honesty in the early 1950′s. I planted them in memory of her as it is 101 years since her birth. How lovely to read the interest in these plants and how generous you are to be sending them to so many. It will be exciting to see the seeds germinate. They are sold commercially here in Australia by D.T. BROWN with 50 seeds in a packet – purple & white.

  67. Trish Lindsey Jaggers  Says:

    Hi, there! Just checking in (4 years later, lol!) and am happy to report that I have money trees all around the north side of my house. Sharing seeds now, lol!

  68. Teri  Says:

    Hi I just came across this site and have been in search of a silver dollar plant. I was hoping that, although it is a few years since your blog, you might have seeds that you are still interested in mailing out. I would be so appreciative. Thank you. Teri

  69. Kristie Craig  Says:

    Hi I realize your offer for the seeds was quite
    sometime ago but I would love to have some of these seeds. Is that still possible?
    Thanks Kristie

  70. Emily  Says:

    I woul love some seeds! Accidentally pulled up my grandfather’s plants and desperately trying to replant!! I appreciate the help!!

  71. Administrator  Says:

    Yes I still have seeds, sometimes I run out but I get more each fall so I can save your envelopes until then if need be.

  72. Debbie  Says:

    My daughter has fallen in love with this plant for her wedding reception table decorations. Our local Old Time Pottery sells artificial plastic ones. I’ll need about 25+stems about 20″ tall for next Aug 2014. Does anyone know where I can buy in bulk?

  73. Jean  Says:

    I’d love too had these from my grandmother. The last two years they haven’t come up, and Iwould some new seeds.
    By the way, in French translated sometimes they are referred to as Pope/s dollars.

  74. Linda R.  Says:

    Thanks for sharing! I’m sending a sase and can hardly wait to get some seeds.

  75. Zoe Guild  Says:

    I remember my grandma had these in her yard and just loved them! If you still have some seeds I’d appreciate getting some. Will send a sesa today! Thanks!

  76. Zoe G  Says:

    sase on the way – thanks so much for sharing!

  77. Shirley S  Says:

    I just found this site, after much searching!!
    Is the offer for the seeds still available?
    These are beautiful, unusual flowers. I hate to admit I’m 50 something, and I’ve only seen these twice in my lifetime. The last time, being a few weeks ago at a hotel, we stayed overnight in for the holidays.
    Thank you for sharing the information.. hopefully, I’m not too late for seeds. :-)

  78. Denise  Says:

    I like many of you know about these beautiful plants from my grandmother she would have been about 100 years old right now. Her parents came over from Italy to Boston and they settled in an area that had hard, cold soil that didnt seem fit for a garden. Surprisingly her backyard was a full blown beautiful garden and it was always full of these silver dollars. She always had themnin vases around the house. I was very close with my grandmother and these remind me so much of her. I found some seeds on line on amazon.com: and order them I just planted them in a pot on my terrace but I live in Florida so I’m not sure that they will survive with the hot weather here but I will try.
    I don’t have my own garden as I am in a condominium but I have a sunny terrace and I’m going to try with pots so I will let you all know what happens.
    I’m happy to see that everybody has the same interest in the Silver Dollar plant . I hope they continue on.
    Happy gardening.

  79. Dorothy  Says:

    Is the free seed offer still stand. I live in Montreal, QC. I was wodering if this plant could survive the harsh weather here. It has a `short lived` summer around 3 months and 5-6 months of cold, harsh, snowy winter. I had a front yard that has full sun with over 12h of sunlight in the summer. Or should i try to plant it indoor?

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