How to Grow a Mouse Plant


The mouse plant (Ochna serrulata), also called a Mickey Mouse plant, is actually a shrub native to South Africa. It grows from 4 to 6 feet tall and has attractive yellow flowers reminiscent of wild rose bush blossoms. The flowers are followed by dark colored fruits that develop below red sepals, causing the plant to resemble the face of Mickey Mouse. The mouse plant cannot survive temperatures that dip below 50 degrees F, so it's best grown as a houseplant in most regions.

Step 1

Fill a growing container three-fourths of the way with potting soil. It is important that the chosen container have drainage holes in the bottom to prevent overwatering.

Step 2

Place the root ball of the mouse plant into the soil at the same level it was growing in its original container. Replace the soil and pat down firmly to remove air pockets.

Step 3

Water until the soil feels moist, but not soggy, and place the container in a location that receives muted sunlight. Check the soil regularly and add water whenever it no longer sticks to your finger.

Step 4

Fertilize every other week with a water-soluble fertilizer. Do not feed the mouse plant during fall and winter to allow it to become dormant.

Things You'll Need

  • Growing container
  • Potting soil
  • Water-soluble fertilizer


  • Plant Care: Mickey Mouse Plant
  • Plantz Africa: Ochna Serrulata
  • City of Botany Bay: Mickey Mouse Plant
Keywords: mouse plant, grow mouse plant, mickey mouse plant, ochna serrulata, mouse plant care

About this Author

Annita Lawson has been working as a freelance writer since 2004. Her work has been published in various web and print outlets, including The Dabbling Mum, A Virtuous Woman, and Pediatrics for Parents. Lawson is pursuing an Associate of Arts degree at Southeast Kentucky Community College. She enjoys sharing all that she has learned about parenting, healthy eating and living a frugal lifestyle.