China Doll

China Doll

China doll


Radermachera sinica, Serpent Tree, Emerald Tree

Radermachera sinica is an evergreen tree in the family Bignoniaceae. The name "sinica" means "from China".

The China Doll (Radermachera sinica) is a fairly new houseplant cultivare that has become very popular and widely available. This plant features attractive, glossy, mid-green leaves divided into leaflets.  Adapted from its origin as a large tree, this fast-growing plant happily tolerates indoor-growing conditions. Although China Doll doesnít bloom indoors, a mature plant will produce large trumpet-shape white flowers when grown outdoors.

Southern China, Taiwan. The genus Radermarchera is named after Jacob Cornelis Matthieu Radermacher, the 18th century Dutch naturalist who cataloged much of the flora of Java and Sumatra. China Doll grows in subtropical climes and loves the warmth and consistent temperatures and light of indoor conditions.

China doll is very sensitive to cold temperatures;  it will show you how persnickety it is about change by dropping leaves. If your plant loses most or all of itís leaves, donít despair! You can save it by trimming all of the stems down to around 1/2 their length and watering less. Beware that when the plant experiences a massive loss of leaves itís susceptible to root rot.​

These compact trees like a rich soil that drains well. General purpose potting soil can be used, add sand or perlite if extra drainage is needed.

"When watering, be careful. Too little or too much can wreak havoc on your China Doll plant. The soil should be kept moist, but the roots shouldnít be allowed to sit in water. Water only when the top inch of the soil is dry to the touch.

Add rocks, perlite, sand, or another type of growing medium to the bottom of your pot if the soil doesnít drain well.​

If your plant develops brittle leaves that turn yellow, it not getting enough water. Too much water is indicated by black colored tips.

When new foliage is developing, watering can be slightly increased and decreased again once the plant has become dormant.​"

Fertilize once a month with Espoma Organic Indoor Plant Food diluted in temperate or room-temperature water.