How to Care for a String-of-Pearls Plant
All plants need various forms of care to enjoy good health, grow and flourish. The string-of-pearls plant (Curio rowleyanus, syn. Senecio rowleyanus) is no exception. It belongs to the Asteraceae family and stands out visually for hanging down over its pot, gaining popularity in the world of this rare appearance. Its origin is in South Africa, so this factor must be taken into account when caring for it correctly.
Proper care for the string-of-pearls plant means it needs the right placement, correct amount of light, temperature and irrigation. All are essential for well-being and development. This is why oneHOWTO brings you our guide on how to care for the string-of-pearls plant, taking into consideration the specific needs of succulent plants.
- What is the best location for the string-of-pearls plant?
- What is the ideal temperature for a string-of-pearls plant?
- How to water the string-of-pearls plant
- How to prune a string-of-pearls plant
- How to fertilize a string-of-pearls plant
- How to transplant the string-of-pearls plant
- How to reproduce the string-of-pearls plant
- Why does the string-of-pearls plant dry out?
What is the best location for the string-of-pearls plant?
Since the string-of-pearls plant is a hanging plant we need to take this into consideration when choosing its location. These plants need somewhere which is very well illuminated to grow properly. If you have an indoor string-of-pearls plant, you will need to place them somewhere either with permanent light or near a window. Avoiding shaded areas will help to prevent the plant from wilting.
When you can see that the leaves on the string-of-pearls succulent lose color, darken or soften, it is likely they are not getting enough light. We should move them to a brighter area such as a terrace or balcony.
What is the ideal temperature for a string-of-pearls plant?
The ideal temperature of these ranges succulent hanging between 16 ºC and 25 ºC (60-77 ºF). Still, they can thrive in much higher temperatures if they are protected from direct contact with the sun's rays. We can keep our string-of-pearls plant outdoors only if we live somewhere with a suitable climate able to maintain these temperatures.
On the contrary, they do not tolerate low temperatures. Avoid exposing it for a long time to temperatures below 10 ºC (50 ºF). Keep them as an indoor plant if the outdoors gets too cold.
How to water the string-of-pearls plant
As with any plant, knowing the right level of irrigation is essential to their survival. We will need to keep it healthy and watered without drowning it. We need to avoid excess moisture so the roots do not rot and trigger the death of the plant.
The substrate needs to be kept moist, but not waterlogged. On way we can detect if the plant needs more water is by observing their leaves. I the string-of-pearls loses its rounded oval shape, it is a red flag.
Taking this into account, we should water a hanging string-of-pearls plant every 10-15 days during most of the year. in summer, we should increase this to once a week. Immersion irrigation is an interesting option for succulents as water the plant doesn't absorb is drained, helping to prevent over-watering.
To know more about succulents, learn how to plant them in containers.
How to prune a string-of-pearls plant
Pruning and fertilizing this succulent plant is an important part in the car for string-of-pearls plants. To prune the string-of-pearls plant, it is essential we clean the pruning shears first to avoid the transference of fungi or bacteria. We need to remove dead leaves and stems when we see them. You will need to do the same if you see any have become too dry or rotten to help promote proper growth.
How to fertilize a string-of-pearls plant
The string-of-pearls plant needs a substrate capable of draining the excess water from irrigation, but we must remember that it should be supplied with organic matter. To improve the quality of the substrate in terms of nutrients, choose to add organic compost, such as a small amount of worm castings. You can also opt for liquid fertilizer, but always ensure it is low in nitrogen (since it softens the succulent) and rich in potassium and phosphorus. You can fertilize the string-of-pearls plant a couple of times a year, in spring and summer.
To know more about organic products, learn how to make your own natural fertilizer at home.
How to transplant the string-of-pearls plant
Learning how to transplant hanging succulents correctly is very important if you want to discover everything about how to care for the string-of-pearls plant as it will require a pot change every so often. You must do it with great care because the leaves can fall off the stem very easily. It will need to be transplanted every three years or so. If you want to be even more careful, you can learn how to make a DIY glass terrarium for your succulent plants.
How to reproduce the string-of-pearls plant
Knowing how to cut the string-of-pearls plant is essential to be able to reproduce it. Follow these steps to do so properly:
- Cut the stems only and remove two inches of the leaves.
- Taking the previous cuts as a reference, replant the stem in the new substrate.
- The great advantage of replanting these stems is that they are very small, so they do not require much time to heal wounds.
- In 2 to 6 weeks it should take root and the hanging string-of-pearls plant will have reproduced.
If you want to go even further, you can learn how to make a living wall with succulent plants.
Why does the string-of-pearls plant dry out?
When the string-of-pearls succulent plant dries it is usually because there is a problem with the frequency of irrigation. However, it can also be due to excessive exposure to the sun. In both cases, it is because the succulent isn't getting enough water to stay hydrated. This is another reason why we may need to keep the plant indoors, as outdoor string-of-pearls plants may get too much sun.
Do not confuse moderation in watering the string-of-pearls plant with forgetting them completely. As it is a succulent type plant, it needs little water to stay healthy and grow. In addition, it resists droughts due to the accumulation of water in its leaves.
Due to these characteristics of the plant, irrigation is sometimes neglected and the substrate is left to dry completely for long periods of time. The soil cannot be excessively humid, but neither can it be dry for a long time because it will end up causing the plant to due. By not receiving water from the earth it will consume what it has stored in its round leaves until it is completely consumed and dies.
You can check the condition of the substrate by sinking your finger or a wooden stick into the ground a couple of centimeters. When you detect that it is quite dry, it will be the time to water the plant.
Now that you know how to care for the string-of-pearls plant, you may want to extend your indoor or outdoor garden. In this case, you can learn what to do by knowing how to care for a dragon tress plant or how to care for a kentia palm tree
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