How to Care for the Succulent That’s Taking Instagram by Storm
Updated Sep 20, 2018 12:24 PM
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In case you haven’t noticed, the plant du jour looks like something you’d find in your grandmother’s costume jewelry collection—and that’s why we can’t get enough of it. The string-of-pearls succulent has taken over Instagram, with its long, beaded stems embellishing windows, shelves, and countertops.
Admittedly, if a few too many cacti have met their untimely demise under your eye, this plant can seem a little intimidating—but it’s actually not too hard to care for. Rooted NYC’s plant-care specialist, Gabby Santiago, talks us through it, below. Accessorizing your home just got easier.
Keep It Hydrated
Sure, you don’t have to water succulents as much as you water your monstera, but the string-of-pearls is actually a tropical plant, so it enjoys a good drink. The actual amount of water it needs depends on the season. “During the summer, you should water it the second it dries out (every two to three weeks), but in winter you can water once a month,” explains Santiago. “Since it’s a tropical succulent, it’s very drought tolerant, but it does like humidity, unlike desert plants.” In between waterings, your plant will appreciate a good mist once a week—but if you have a humidifier, you can skip this step.
Keep It Lit
Part of this plant’s charm is its trailing nature, which is why you’ll most often see it hanging in a window or from the ceiling. But since the string-of-pearls needs bright, indirect light, you’ll have to strategize where you place it. “Hanging it in a south- or east-facing window is the most ideal—basically, as long as it’s within five to eight feet of the window,” Santiago says. But that doesn’t necessarily rule out any west- or north-facing spots. Those directions just get less sunlight, so you’ll have to be sure your plant is placed directly in the window so it can soak up enough rays.
Keep It Growing
Once you’ve mastered the art of tending to your string-of-pearls, you’ll quickly be rewarded: This plant grows fast. If you really want to hone your green thumb, you have two options. You can propagate it to create a whole new plant, or you can use Santiago’s trick to make your plant look a little more lush.
“If you notice that your plant is living its best life and really growing fast, simply snip some off and then put that snippet in water so it grows roots that you can plant or put right back in the pot to give the string-of-pearls a fuller look,” Santiago explains. Consider this the gift that keeps on giving.
Your string-of-pearls succulent care kit:
See more plant advice: What Greenery to Buy, According to Your Plant Parent Personality Buy These Under-the-Radar Plants Before They Hit It Big These 9 Plants Can Reduce Stress and Increase Productivity (Yes, Really)