Indoor plants

Grow peperomia

When and how much to water

Peperomia is an evergreen plant present in many species, all united by a particularly bushy habit, small roots and very ornamental and succulent leaves. The species present in nature are more than a thousand, while those grown in greenhouses are about thirty and have quite different shapes and colors depending on the quality. Some varieties have a drooping habit and should be watered in moderation from spring to summer, in winter they need very little water. Rather than the soil it is advisable to nebulize the leaves, or put the plant on a saucer full of stones or expanded clay over a layer of water. In this way the roots of the peperomiathey will be constantly immersed in a humid environment similar to that found in nature, without the soil becoming soaked with water, risking to rot the roots. All peperomia species are succulent, therefore the general rule applies to give as little water as possible and rather create a humid environment. The roots are small and delicate and absolutely do not tolerate being immersed in water, on the contrary, they prefer dry soil because they take nourishment from the surrounding air through humidity.

How to take care of it


We have seen that the peperomia species are very many, but in any case they all share the same care procedure. Being a tropical plant it needs humidity, but it is not the only thing necessary to make it thrive and vegetate at its best. Considering its origins, it cannot stand the cold and temperatures below 15 degrees could cause it to dry out and die. The best substrate should be porous, with a mixture of sand, peat and soil for green plants, so that excess water flows freely. Cold drafts must absolutely be avoided and in winter it is better to move it indoors if it is on the terrace. Every two or three weeks it is good to vaporize the whole environment, even in winter, a period during which if the soil remains dry there is no problem. If you want the plants not to grow excessively, it is advisable to place them in an area with little light, because they will remain luxuriant and beautiful without developing too much, vice versa, if you want very large vegetations you have to repot them every year. When you want to reproduce, just do it through cutting or stem in the months between April and August.

Fertilization


All types of peperomia have the characteristic of being so compact as to seem fake and do not need particularly frequent fertilization. Very rarely do they flourish in the apartment, an environment that is much more congenial to them than the outside. When spring begins and throughout the summer period, a special fertilizer for green plants must be administered every three weeks and it is advisable to suspend for the rest of the year. The doses suggested on the package should be reduced, because too much fertilizer can damage the plant. The flowering species produce small spikes with whitish flowers during the summer months; from June to September these species must be fertilized more, but without exceeding. The fertilizer must have all the nutrients balanced to allow the plant to thrive even in pots. A fundamental precaution is to regularly remove dry or damaged leaves, because they could become a means of propagation of fungi and parasites. When it is necessary to cut a piece of plant, it is then necessary to disinfect the cut with fire to avoid the attack of mites.

Grow peperomia: Exposure and possible diseases


The best exposure for all peperomia plants is in an area where there is a lot of light, but not direct sun. The optimal temperature ranges from 16 to 24 degrees and below 12 degrees there are great risks that the plant will die or at least not vegetate anymore. When it is exposed in an area where there is little light the leaves have less mottling and when the plant grows little or the leaves wither quickly it means that the soil is too wet. In this case it is very easy for fungi to attack the radial system, which must be checked by extracting the plant from the pot and eliminating any rotten or black parts. It would also be good to repot in a new soil, always bearing in mind that this plant needs little water. When too many leaves fall it means that the nourishment is excessive, in particular in the fertilizer there are too many mineral salts which must be removed by watering the plant with demineralized water for a few months. Obviously the fertilization must be suspended completely and it would be even better to completely change the soil avoiding fertilization until the summer period, starting again with some watering with demineralized water once a week.

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