String of pearls plants are unique vining succulents that are quickly recognizable by their small pea-shaped leaves. The leaves grow on trailing stems that gracefully overflow the sides of planters and hanging baskets much like the string of rubies succulent. You can use these stems to propagate the plant, which is a robust and fast grower– getting about five to 15 inches each year– however does not live long without propagation.
Generally cultivated worldwide year-round as a hanging plant, in its east African natural desert habitat, string of pearls plants are terrestrial and form a ground cover. You can plant it at any time however will have the most success in the warmer months. In addition to its distinct sphere-like leaves, the string of pearls produces white flowers in spring with an enjoyable cinnamon-like aroma; although, it hardly ever flowers inside your home. This plant is toxic to family pets and humans.
Common Name: String of pearls, string of beads, string of peas, rosary vine
Botanical Name: Curio rowleyanus (formerly Senecio rowleyanus)
Plant Type: Succulent
Mature Size: 1-2 ft. tall, 1-2 ft. long
Sun Exposure: Full, partial
Soil Type: Sandy, well-drained
Soil pH: Neutral to acidic
Bloom Time: Summer
Flower Color: White
Hardiness Zones: 9-12 (USDA)
Native Area: Africa
Toxicity: Toxic to humans, toxic to pets
How To Care For String Of Pearls
The string of pearls plant is not particular about its conditions. Provided enough light and fertilizer, it will grow rather vigorously in a season. A single plant will survive for about 5 years if appropriately taken care of, however if you propagate brand-new plants from stem cuttings, you can effectively keep it alive forever.
To allow this plant to shine, think about growing string of pearls with multiple stems in a hanging basket. String of pearls has no substantial illness problems, and it does not require much care.
String of pearls plants grow on a combination of indirect and direct sunshine, amounting to in between six and 8 hours a day. They’re best when kept in direct sunlight throughout the softer early morning hours, then transferred to an area that gets diffused, indirect light, or partial shade throughout the harsher afternoon hours.
Sandy soil is best for your string of pearls plants, even though any regular succulent potting soil is acceptable. These plants are prone to root rot, so make sure their soil is well-draining.3
Plant them in a container that boasts adequate drainage holes at its base. Terra cotta or clay pots can also assist wick away excess moisture from the soil.
Keep the plant’s soil gently moist during the growing season in the spring and summer, then minimize water during the winter months. If you see the succulent’s round leaves flattening, it’s a great sign that the plant needs more water. When every 7 to 14 days, you will likely require watering your plant. Plants in hotter environments, outdoors during the summertime, or in porous terra-cotta pots may require water closer to every seven days, all depending upon rain frequency and temperatures. If the soil is dry to the touch down to the very first one-half inch of soil, that’s an excellent indication your plant is thirsty
Once the water drains pipes out of the bottom of the pot, water completely; you’re done watering. Succulents require great drainage and take care not to overwater your string of pearls plants. Succulents are drought-resistant however can not survive with wet, soaked roots.
Temperature And Humidity
String of pearls plants flourish in warm temperatures above 70 degrees Fahrenheit from spring through fall, and it grows finest with winter temperatures, varying from 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. This plant prefers low humidity, so avoid putting it in any already-humid locations of your home, like a kitchen area or restroom.
Feed your string of pearls plants biweekly during the growing season with a well balanced liquid or water-soluble fertilizer, diluted to about half strength. Throughout its inactive winter duration, just feed the plant every six weeks.
String Of Pearls Plant Species Types
There are a number of closely related plants to String of pearls that include in a different way-shaped leaves, looking more like bananas, teardrops, or watermelons with stripes. These close cousins in the same daisy family consist of:
‘Curio radicans’: Fuller and not as tracking as string of pearls, this varietal has tendrils with banana-shaped leaves; frequently called string of bananas or string of fish hooks.
‘Curio herreanus’: Frequently called string of watermelon or string of beads, this tracking plant has small melon-shaped leaves with purple striping.
‘Curio citriformus’: This varietal has both put up and tracking stems filled with plump, teardrop leaves and little white flowers that flower between late summertime and winter.
How To Prune String Of Pearls
Using disinfected pruners or scissors, trim off any dead stems and pearls, as well as any stems that have actually lost a great deal of their leaves. You can cut those branches and propagate brand-new plants from the cuttings if your plant is getting leggy or too long. Pruning will promote fuller, bushier plants.
How To Propagate String Of Pearls Plant
String of pearls plants propagate quickly via stem cuttings. To keep your plant alive for many years, you’ll want to take cuttings and make brand-new plants. Spring, summertime, or early fall (in warmer climates) are great times to propagate string of pearls plant. It can take three to four weeks for the plant to settle. You can likewise plant seeds, although it is frequently less successful. Here’s how to grow plants from cuttings:
- To propagate string of pearls plant, you will require decontaminated pruning snips or scissors, a four- or six-inch pot, and cactus or succulent soil.
- Cut a number of 4 to five-inch stems simply below a leaf node. Get rid of the last 2 leaves. Lay out the stems for about one to two days prior to planting. Handle with care on the cut ends and areas where the leaves were removed and make sure they are callous over and dry.
- Fill a pot with soil and dig a hole in the center to plant the stems.
- Put the cut ends into the dug hole with a minimum depth of an inch. All leaves need to be above the soil.
- If inside your home, position it in a brilliant spot. Generally the plant
grows better in partial sun outdoors. Water the soil when it dries up.
Growing String Of Pearl Plant From Seed
Among the reasons why strings of pearls plant is tough to grow from seeds is that the flower heads need to be pollinated to produce seeds that will sprout. A big unknown is whether the seeds are feasible, which you will not know until you plant them.
Repot the seeds together with a fast-draining succulent or cactus potting mix. Ensure you never ever let the soil dry up. If you do not believe you can maintain soil moistness, put a clear plastic bag around the growing pot. The germination rate of the seed can be a couple of weeks to 2 to 3 months, and seeds germinate quicker in spring or summertime.
How To Pot And Repot String Of Pearls Plant
The ideal time to repot your string of pearls plant is at the start of spring. Prepare a well-draining succulent or cactus soil mix and a plant pot with adequate drain holes. Typically, Terra cotta and un-glazed ceramic pots are suitable for succulents. The pot must be the next size up from the pot you presently have, usually two to three inches bigger and deeper. Include the soil to the bottom of the pot, gently remove the root ball from the old pot and center it on the bed of fresh soil. Replenish the soil to up to one inch below the lip of the pot, somewhere around the root ball.
You can repot these plants each year but only a few times before they eventually start to die back. After a few years, it’s much better to propagate a plant from new cuttings instead of attempting to preserve and replant an older plant.
How To Take Care Of String Of Pearls During Winter
Bring your string of pearls plant inside your home during the winter; it will not survive a freezing winter season outdoors if you live in zone 8 or below. If you want your plant to eventually flower, you will wish to give it a cool-down period with temperatures simply above freezing between 35 to 44 F. Keep the plant in a non-heated room that gets at least 6 hours of light, providing it the cool period it needs. Water really rarely– about when each month throughout the inactive duration.
Don’t Let Pests Ruin Your String Of Pearls
Aphids, termites, whiteflies, mealybugs, gnats, and ants are common bugs brought into string of pearls. Bugs frequently overtake it if the plant is unhealthy. Poor drain, high humidity, overcrowding, and inadequate light can deteriorate a string of pearls plant’s defenses. Avoid overwatering, mist the plant with neem oil service, move the plant to a well-ventilated location, and check your plants regularly for bugs. Neem oil and insecticidal soap are two natural pest control techniques for bugs on your plant. Try these methods before going the route of artificial pesticides.
Tips For Getting String Of Pearls To Bloom
String of pearls bloom in summertime, producing one-half-inch daisy-like white flowers with long red endurance and intense yellow anthers. It hardly ever flowers when kept inside, it can flower if it’s fed routinely and has adequate water and light. When it flowers, its blooms last a month or so.
How To Take Care Of String Of Pearls Plant
String of pearls plants rarely have concerns with illness and insects, making them terrific to keep. The greatest problem this plant has is generally related to excessive or not sufficient water.
If your plant’s leaves are withering or wilting, it can be a sign of overwatering or underwatering. If you’ve regularly been watering and the soil feels soaked, you are watering excessive, or the plant needs much better drainage. Water once every seven to 2 week; the leading inch of soil ought to feel dry before watering once again. If the round leaves flatten, it’s an indication you ought to increase water frequency.
Yellowing or gray-colored leaves are typically brought on by bug activity. Routinely treating the plant with neem oil must keep insects at bay.
Root rot can eliminate the plant. To conserve the plant, you can let the plant dry out and see if it recuperates. If the plant is too far gone, you can cut off any staying healthy stems and propagate them in a small pot with tidy soil.