Gardening Tips

Ceropegia woodii or heart necklace plant: care

Ceropegia woodii or heart necklace plant: care

The heart necklace plant is a unique hanging climbing plant, and it is actually a succulent plant and, therefore, with all the advantages of resistance that these plants usually show. Its striking heart-shaped leaves make it a highly sought after plant for decoration.

If you want to enjoy a hanging plant that hardly needs care, keep reading EcologíaVerde and learn everything about the care of the Ceropegia woodii or plant hearts necklace.

Characteristics of the Ceropegia woodii or heart necklace plant

Its scientific name is Ceropegia woodiibut depending on the area it is usually called heart necklace, rosary vine, or wax fountain, among other names. It is a species that has its origin in Africa, where it reaches up to more than 2 meters of length.

Its stems are delicate in appearance, thin and with heart-shaped leaves that grow in pairs, maintaining a certain separation. However, nothing is further from reality: the heart necklace is a plant very resistant, ideal for beginners or hobbyists without much time. The leaves are fleshy looking, silvery green that turns pinkish when the plant is stressed by too much light.

The Ceropegia has tuberous roots, which are the ones it uses to store water, which is why it is not demanding when it comes to watering. Its flowering, which appears in summer in the form of small flowers that appear to be made of waxcharacteristic from which the plant receives its scientific name.

Ceropegia woodii or necklace of hearts plant: care - Characteristics of the Ceropegia woodii or necklace of hearts plant

Location for the Ceropegia woodii or necklace of hearts plant

Ceropegia is often grown as houseplant, because it requires a large amount of light, but of indirect incidence whenever possible. If you place it directly in the sun in a hot climate or with a very intense sun, it is very likely that it will end up drying out the plant, so it is recommended to put it where receive only morning sun and as much indirect light as possible, so that it is no longer exposed to the midday or early afternoon sun, which is more intense. In the Northern Hemisphere, it is best to place it facing South, while in the Southern Hemisphere, it will be better to face North.

In addition, it is necessary to place it in a pot with drainage holesso that the substrate can get rid of excess moisture after watering.

Ceropegia woodii or necklace of hearts plant: care - Location for the Ceropegia woodii or necklace of hearts plant

Climate for the Ceropegia woodii or necklace of hearts plant

The ideal temperature for this plant is between 16ºC and 21ºC throughout the year, although it can withstand temperatures of up to 6 ºC occasionally and for a short time.

Given its resistance to drought, it is a particularly suitable indoor plant for homes with central heating, which cause so much damage to other species.

Irrigation for the Ceropegia woodii or necklace of hearts plant

Thanks to its status as a succulent plant, the necklace of hearts not picky about watering. In fact, as happens so often with this type of plant, when in doubt, always it’s better to under-water than to overdo it.

If your plant needs more water, you can see it right away as its leaves and stems seem to lose volume and shrivel, and it will bounce back as soon as you water it again. Excesses, on the other hand, are much more problematic, as they usually lead to root rot, and the damage is much more serious and dangerous for the plant. In warm months, allow your Ceropegia’s substrate to dry below the surface before watering again, testing it by sticking a finger or a toothpick into the soil. In the cold months, space your waterings even more.

Here you can learn more tips on How to water succulents and When to water plants.

Soil and fertilizer for the Ceropegia woodii or heart necklace plant

Another aspect in which the plant is not demanding is in terms of its substrate. The only important thing here is that it offers drainage as best as possible to avoid waterloggingso the sandy substrates they are a good choice. You can also use the universal mix that we usually recommend, you can do it by mixing coconut fiber, peat and earthworm humus in equal parts, and then adding a handful of perlite and vermiculite. This way you will get a very light mixture, rich in nutrients and with excellent water retention and drainage properties.

As far as the fertilizer, the Ceropegia will be enough with a annual fertilization to reinforce its flowering. The ideal is to use ecological fertilizers, such as compost or earthworm humus, adding a few centimeters of it to the base of the plant. Other organic homemade fertilizers, such as those made from eggshells or banana tea, will also work well.

Ceropegia woodii or necklace of hearts plant: care - Soil and fertilizer for Ceropegia woodii or necklace of hearts plant

Multiplication and pruning of the Ceropegia woodii or heart necklace plant

If your necklace of hearts grows too large, don’t be afraid to take some very sharp scissors, disinfect them and cut, being the beginning of spring the best time.

This is also the ideal time to take cuttings with which to reproduce the Ceropegia plant, a very common and simple method that has a high probability of success, as it happens with most succulents. We recommend you take a look at this other article on How to reproduce succulents.

Now that you know all these cares for the heart necklace plant or Ceropegia woodii, we encourage you to learn more about the care of succulents.

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