|Common Name||Several, depending on the variety|
|Scientific Name:||Peperomia spp.|
|Origin||South America (Amazon region)|
Here is a list of popular Peperomia varieties:
1. Peperomia Argyreia
Also known as the watermelon peperomia, the Peperomia Argyreia is a small perennial that usually won’t grow taller than 8 inches high. It comes with round glossy leaves that are striped in a way that is similar to the rind of watermelon while the leaf stems are red.
2. Peperomia Obtusifolia
If you want a taller plant, the Peperomia Obtusifolia grows thick stems to about a foot tall. The thick, waxy leave may grow to up to 6 inches long, making a fairly bushy plant.
3. Peperomia Rubella
The Peperomia Rubella is an uncommon variety that is a small-leaved vine with fuzzy leaves and stems. The stems and the undersides of the leaves are red and the top of the leaves are patterned green.
4. Peperomia Serpens
If you want a plant with variegated heart-shaped leaves, the Peperomia Serpens grows very quickly, despite it being a relatively small plant.
5. Peperomia Sandersii
Similar to the Argyreia, the Peperomia Sandersii has red stems and variegated green leaves.
6. Peperomia Metallica
Peperomia Metallica generally grows to about 8 inches tall. It sprouts dark red leaves that showcase a silvery stripe in the middle.
How to Care for Indoor Peperomia
Peperomias are typically very easy to care for, though there are some things you should note in order to help them do their best. Here are the basic care instructions for the plant:
Common Problems with Peperomia
You may occasionally experience some problems with your peperomia plant. These may include the following:
Why Is Your Peperomia Wilting?
If your peperomia is wilting, it will generally mean that you aren’t giving it enough water. Increase your watering slightly over the next few weeks to see if it will recover.
Why Does Your Peperomia Have Yellowing Leaves or Black Stems?
Yellowing leaves and black stems on your peperomia is typically a sign that it is receiving too much water. Water it less frequently in order to prevent causing further damage to your plant.
What Insects Can Affect Peperomia?
There are several insects that can infest a peperomia plant. You will need to watch out for fungus gnats, mealybugs, spider mites, scale, and thrips.
Fungus gnats are tiny grey and black flies that measure to be about 1/8 inch long. They have long, slender legs and antennae and are often confused for mosquitoes at first glance. They also have transparent to grey wings that join in a Y-shaped vein. Their larvae are very small and appear to be translucent worms in the soil.
Spider mites are tiny black arachnids (not typically seen by humans) that like warm environments. They have oval bodies and eight legs and are generally white, red, or brown (though they are difficult to see with the naked eye). Spider mites can easily travel on the wind through a window screen. If you have them, you’ll see fine webbing similar to spider silk underneath the leaves. Leaves will sometimes become spotted or change color. Spray them off with water, a homemade miticide, or use Neem oil to remove them.
Scale are small insects that suck the sap out of your houseplant’s leaves or stems. Either round or oval in shape, they can come in a variety of colors but are most often brown. While all of them have shells, there are two main varieties, one of which has a harder shell (known as a hard shell) than the other (soft shell). These insects can be found anywhere on a plant and are very difficult to fully remove, though the soft shell scale is easier. You will need to remain very vigilant for a few weeks in order to save your plant.
Thrips come in various colors from black to yellowish. They are very thin (about the same width as a sewing needle) and have fringed winges. These tiny insects are typically most active in the spring and are attracted to various houseplants and garden vegetables. They will feed by sucking the sap of your plants. They spread very quickly through laying their larvae, so it is important to take action as soon as you realize you have an infestation.
Is the Peperomia an Invasive Species?
Peperomias are not considered invasive species, making them safe to plant both in and outside of your home.
How Does Peperomia Spread?
While peperomia may be able to spread by seed, it doesn’t always sprout to intended results (like many other plants). Instead, most gardeners prefer to multiply their peperomia plants through propagation. The process will typically take about a month for the plant to root and longer for it to begin to sprout leaves.
What Container Should You Use for Peperomia?
As peperomias are relatively small plants, they don’t require a lot of space. They will be perfectly happy in a container that is between 4 to 6 inches in diameter. In fact, many peperomias will thrive in a container where they are tightly snug as there will be less chance of root rot. As the soil needs to dry out between waterings, it is typically best to find a well-draining pot.
When to Prune a Peperomia
Although you can prune your peperomia anytime throughout the year, doing it in late spring or early summer will allow it to take advantage of the extra sun for it to recover quickly.
Companion Plants to a Peperomia
The following plants will serve as companion plants to the peperomia:
Chinese Money Plant Overview
Originally believed to bring good luck, the Chinese Money Plant originates in Southwest China. It grows flat, round leaves that can look like coins on long stems that grow directly from the crown. When it is healthy, the plant can become very dense, allowing you to have a rounded plant of green leaves. The plant is very easy to propagate and will frequently shoot up pups around its base that you can transplant into other containers.
Snake Plant Overview
Also known as “Mother-in-Law’s-Tongue,” the Snake Plant is a popular plant that can grow up to 4 feet tall with proper care. The plant is created with sword-shaped leaves the grow directly from the base. The leaves will vary in color between light and dark green as well as a bluish green. Not only is the Snake Plant a hardy plant that can grow in a variety of conditions, but it is also known as a plant that will help clean the air in your home.
Silver Dollar Vine Overview
Originating from Madagascar, the Silver Dollar Vine is a scrambling shrub with plump, succulent leaves. The circle-shaped leaves are sage-green and attach to climbing vines that can be trained. In the spring and summer, the plant will grow much more quickly and may bloom clusters of greenish-yellow flowers. When they aren’t pruned, the plant can grow up to 12 feet high and up to 6 feet wide.
Originating from tropical Asia, hoyas are perennial vines or creepers that are known for their waxy leaves and flowers. They typically grow by twining and can grow quite large when given the opportunity. Their flowers are typically characterized as spherical clusters of star-shaped blooms that can come in a variety of different colors. The plants are easy to propagate, making them a very popular option for people who love flowering houseplants.
Also known as the “prayer plant” or the “living plant,” the calathea plant is well-loved for the way it closes its leaves at night due to a small joint between the stem and the leaf. The leaves can grow to be several inches long and come in several different variegated patterns. The calathea can also purify the air, helping to purify the air of several pollutants. The plant will also continually grow new leaves, keeping it looking fresh and new.
Plants that are Similar to Peperomia
If you are looking for plants that are similar to peperomia, consider one of the following:
Christmas Cactus Overview
With flattened stems and beautiful trumpet-shaped flowers that flower in the winter, it is no wonder that this plant is popular during the holiday season, The stems are made up of succulent-like segments that typically gain new growth each year. In order to get your Christmas cactus to bloom indoors, you will need to follow a few-step process starting a couple of months before the season.
Peace Lily Overview
Peace lilies are known for their long, dark green leaves that come to a point and their long-lasting white flowers. Due to the lily-like flowers, the plant has long symbolized innocence, peace, and purity and is often used as a symbol of sympathy toward a family who has lost a member. Due to its love of shade, the plant is typically grown indoors and can help to purify the air of several pollutants. The plant is sometimes believed to bring good luck.
A popular ornamental plant, the dracaena can be grown both indoors and outdoors. When kept indoors, they will typically grow to about 3 feet but can grow much taller outdoors. They are characterized by thick, trunk-like stems and green leaves that can grow up to a foot long indoors. It is celebrated as a houseplant that is good for cleaning the air indoors, removing pollutants like carbon dioxide and formaldehyde.
Spider Plant Overview
Known for its ability to clean the air in your home, the spider plant is a plant that grows long, variegated stems. Colors range from green to cream to white depending on the variety. The plant also produces smaller versions of itself on long stems that can be easily propagated in a new pot. Many homeowners will place them on a higher shelf to allow the leaves and stems to drape down, but they also look great in a hanging pot.
African Violet Overview
The African Violet is a popular compact houseplant that typically grows purple flowers, though there are varieties with other colors. They have short, fleshy leaves that are a bit furry and flowers that typically have 5 petals (though some varieties have more) that are either oval or heart-shaped. These plants do really well in self-watering plants and are typically fairly low maintenance when kept in the right environment.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Large Will a Peperomia Grow?
Peperomias will typically grow to about 8 to 12 inches tall, making them a good plant for those who don’t have a lot of extra space.
Is a Peperomia Toxic or Bad for Pets?
Peperomia is not toxic for humans or for pets. They are safe to keep in any home.