China Doll Plant

A Beginner's Guide to China Doll Plant Care | All You Need to Grow!

Family: Bignoniaceae
Common Name: China Doll, Emerald Tree, Serpent Tree
Botanical name: Radermachera sinica

China Doll Plants, just like many of us, do not like a huge deviation from the things that make us comfortable. If you keep this in mind, once you find the right spot for your radermachera, we strongly recommend that you keep it where it is thriving. This doesn't mean you can’t pick it up and admire it, water it and rotate it, it simply means – leave it in the spot it loves! The number one (and two) plant care take-away is that they need bright indirect light and the soil should never completely dry out! This bit of info is for those who have no intention of reading any further. For those of you who want to learn more about how to care for and grow your China Doll Plant, read on:

China Doll Plant Care

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If you have an area in your home that receives more than 6 hours of natural sunlight a day (cloudy days excluded) then Radermachera sinica – so properly called, will stake a claim! An indoor plant with loads of gorgeous foliage needs to soak up all the rays to keep its leaves glossy and all! If you see that leaves are falling all around and you have no idea why, try moving your China Doll closer to a window!


Do not let the soil slightly dry out between watering. Period. This plant needs to have access to some moisture in the soil and once the moisture is gone, you will start seeing leaves split the scene. This is the most critical part when trying to grow a China Doll. If you are a forgetful waterer, then you might want to rethink this as your latest specimen plant. The good news is that you can tell when your Radermachera needs water by looking at its leaves. If they are drooping and limp, it's time to make your watering move!


China Doll Plans love the heat but remember that indoor plants dry out faster when the temperature is high! An average household temperature (65-75 °F) will do the trick for these tropical plants!


China Doll Plants are not as humidity sensitive as some other leafy house plants, but they will appreciate slightly higher humidity levels if you can supply it! If the leaf tips start turning brown, that is the sign that you should increase the humidity around it.


It’s a good rule of thumb to start fertilizing your houseplants when you see new growth forming and this usually happens in spring time. Continue to fertilize your plants throughout the summer and stop fertilizing when you notice no new growth! Use a diluted complete liquid fertilizer or seaweed or fish emulsion. When repotting, the soil can be amended with worm castings to provide additional nutrition.

Growth Rate

China Doll is a medium to fast growing plant. If you have the right conditions, lots of light, then they could grow much taller and wider, exceeding over 8+ feet and beyond!

Pet Friend or Foe

These indoor plants are Non-Toxic to pets! Friend

Pro Tips 

  1. Prune back these fast growing plants to keep them bushy and full. Do not remove more than ¼ of the foliage to make sure they have enough leaf surface to produce energy.
  2. Be sure to rotate your China Doll every time you water it to maintain a well-balanced shape.
  3. A clean plant is a happy plant so we encourage you to wash the leaves every month to eliminate dust and potential pests.

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