String of Turtles Care
String of turtles (Peperomia prostrata) are a member of the Peperomia genus but their care is more like string of pearls or string of hearts. That is, their roots are small and easily waterlogged so the soil must dry quickly. String of turtles are easy but unlike many other easy plants, you can't cut corners or say, "It will be fine," when it comes to soil type, pot size, light, and watering needs. Once you get those things right though, string of turtles are a breeze. Oh, and string of turtles are native to the Brazilian rainforest so while humidity is not necessary to the plant's survival, they LOVE LOVE LOVE humidity.
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Bright indirect. 1-3 hrs direct from E or W window is ideal but too much or too intense = Leaves fade and/or burn. (New leaves are particularly sun sensitive. Adjust exposure if on 2nd floor or higher.) Too little light = Leggy growth, small leaves, increased risk of overwatering. Top of soil must dry quickly so avoid placing on a high shelf or above a window.
Water when 50-75% dry or when leaves flatten, which is a sign of thirst. SOT is succulent-like so water is stored in leaves. Overwatering or soil that stays damp for too long = 1) Plump leaves w/ shriveled stems due to root rot. 2) Leaves yellow & drop. Severely underwatered = Leaves brown, dry out, & drop. SOT roots are small & easily waterlogged. When in doubt, don't water.
Soil & Potting
Keep slightly rootbound. Can go many years in the same pot. Can also be difficult to repot (leaf connection to stem seems weak) so do not rush it. A very well-draining medium is essential. Fine & gritty is best. Amend soils with perlite, sand, and/or bark to increase drainage. A pot with a hole is important to water infrequently but thoroughly.
Propagate cuttings in water or by laying individual leaves or stem sections on top of soil.
Thrives in high humidity but lives fine in average household conditions. (Growth will be slower.) If humidity is high, you will water less. Be mindful if you change its environment.
65° - 75°F degrees is ideal. Avoid temps 55°F & lower. Too cold = Leaves drop. Keep from AC, heat vents, & cold drafts