If you’re reading this, chances are you’ve fallen in love with the charming, cascading beauty of the String of Pearls succulent (Senecio rowleyanus). But, like all plants, your little pearls might eventually outgrow their pot or need a refresh. Fear not! In this guide, we’ll teach you how to repot String of Pearls plants to keep them thriving and trailing with style.
When to Repot String of Pearls?
First things first, when should you consider giving your String of Pearls a new home? Well, succulents are pretty chill about their space, so you don’t need to be in a rush, plus you only should repot a mature plant with established roots. Here are a few signs it might be time:
- Root Crowding: If you notice the roots are tightly packed and pushing their way out of the drainage holes, it’s time to give your plant some breathing room.
- Slow Growth: Stunted growth or leggy stems are indicators that your succulent might need a fresh start.
- Soil Depletion: If the soil has become compacted, lost its drainage, or doesn’t drain well anymore, it’s time for a soil swap.
- Disease or Pest Infestation: Sometimes, pests or diseases can take hold, and repotting can help you start fresh with a healthy plant.
Choosing the Right Pot
Okay, let’s get into the nitty-gritty of repotting. First up, the pot. You want to pick a new home that your String of Pearls can grow into for a while. Here’s what to keep in mind:
- Size Matters: Go for a pot that’s about 1-2 inches larger in diameter than the current one. You don’t want to give your plant too much space; they like to be snug.
- Drainage is Key: Make sure your new pot has drainage holes. Succulents hate sitting in waterlogged soil.
- Material Magic: Terra cotta pots are a classic choice because they breathe and allow excess moisture to escape. But you can get creative as long as the pot provides good drainage.
Choosing the Right Soil
Soil might not sound exciting, but it’s crucial for your plant’s well-being. Your String of Pearls is used to arid conditions, so a well-draining succulent or cactus mix is ideal. You can buy this pre-made or mix your own using potting soil, perlite, and sand for that perfect blend.
The Tools You’ll Need
Before you dive into repotting, let’s gather everything you’ll need:
- New pot
- New soil
- Gloves: Protect your hands from any irritants your plant might have.
- Trowel or Spoon: A small trowel or spoon will help with scooping and moving soil.
- Newspaper: Things might get messy; this will make cleanup a breeze.
- Pruning shears: to cut open the old pot for easier extraction
How to Repot String of Pearls Step-by-Step
Now, let’s get our hands dirty – but not too dirty! Follow these steps, and your String of Pearls will be happily resettled in no time:
- Pick the Perfect Time: Choose a warm, but not too hot day to repot. Avoid doing it in the winter or when your pearls are stressed from extreme heat (or cold).
- Preparations: Lay down your newspaper or drop cloth to keep your workspace tidy. Put on your gloves to protect your hands.
- Gentle Extraction: Carefully remove your String of Pearls from its current pot. Gently tip the pot on its side, supporting the plant with your hand, and let gravity do the work. If it’s stubborn, tap the pot’s edge to loosen it. Or if there is no other way, just use a pruning shear and cut open the old pot.
- Root Check-Up: Inspect the roots. Healthy roots are white or light brown. Trim any black, mushy, or dead ones. Don’t worry; it’s like a haircut for your plant.
- Potting the Pearls: Fill your new pot with the succulent mix, leaving enough space at the top to accommodate your plant. Make a hole in the center of the soil with your trowel or spoon, just deep enough to hold your pearls.
- Transplanting: Gently place your String of Pearls into its new home. Be sure it’s centered and at the same depth as it was in the old pot.
- Fill ‘er Up: Carefully fill the space around your plant with more succulent mix. Use your spoon or trowel to pack it in gently. Leave a bit of space at the top for watering.
- Water your Pearls and place them in a window where it can get enough sunlight
Maintaining your newly repotted String of Pearls is a breeze. Here are some tips to keep them happy:
- Don’t Overwater: Remember, these succulents like to dry out between waterings. Err on the side of underwatering rather than overwatering.
- Fertilize Sparingly: Feed your pearls with a diluted, balanced liquid fertilizer during the growing season (spring and summer). No need to fertilize during the dormant months.
- Prune Wisely: Trim leggy or overgrown stems to keep your plant looking lush and full.
- Check for Pests: Keep an eye out for common succulent pests like mealybugs. If you spot any, treat them promptly.
And that’s all there is to it! Repotting your String of Pearls is a straightforward process that can help your plant thrive and continue to enchant you with its unique beauty. Enjoy your happy and healthy cascading pearls!
Frequently Asked Questions
How often to repot string of pearls?
String of Pearls have relatively small roots, so they can stay in the same pot for about 5 years.
Are string of pearls easy to care for?
String of Pearls are pretty low-maintenance plants, you just need to make sure they get enough sun, and have well-draining, sandy soil.
Do string of pearls like direct sun?
These plants prefer full or partial sun. It is best if you keep them in direct sunlight in the morning.
How to water a string of pearls?
String of Pearls are slow drinkers, so you only need to water them every 2 weeks. Make sure that the soil is dry to the touch before you water!