This post will teach you how to propagate string of pearls. String of pearls plant propagation is easy—in fact, it’s one of the easiest plants to propagate.
How to Propagate String of Pearls
I recently wrote about how to care for a string of pearls plant—or Senecio rowleyanus, and also referred to as a string of beads or string of peas plant. It’s a beautiful succulent with long string-like stems covered in round pea- or bead-like leaves. Hence the name string of pearls or string of beads.
If a string of pearls plant is happy where it’s at and you’re giving it the proper amount of water, it will grow like a weed. The stems and leaves can get up to 3 feet long, and you can loop the stems back in to the plant to encourage fuller growth.
Pruning or trimming your string of pearls plant is a great way to keep it looking healthy and happy. Although frequent pruning isn’t necessary, most plants enjoy a little extra TLC in the form of a haircut every now and then. And since string of pearls is a succulent, it’s extremely easy to propagate and grow new plants from cuttings!
There are two great ways to propagate string of pearls plants: by rooting cuttings in water and by rooting cuttings in soil. But unlike many other succulents, you don’t propagate string of pearls using leaves; you propagate it using a stem cutting.
Propagation in Water
Propagating string of pearls in water is very easy. It’s a very similar process to propagating pothos cuttings in water. You simply take stem cutting from your existing plant, I’d say about 3–5 inches long. Then you gently strip the leaves off of the bottom third of the stem. This is the area that will go in water.
I use a mason jar to propagate pothos cuttings, but since the string of pearls cuttings are so much shorter and more fragile, I use a small glass bowl. It’s the perfect size to let the leaf-less stems rest in water. Then I set the bowl in an area that gets good light, right by our sliding glass door that gets midday, afternoon, and evening sun.
Within a few days, you’ll see thin white (almost translucent looking) roots begin to emerge from the nodes on the stem. The cuttings in this picture began to root in only about 24 hours! But I left them in the water for three days total so the roots could get nice and long.
Once the roots were ready for soil, I gently planted the cuttings into a small container to root in soil. I keep a few small containers on hand to root cuttings like this. You don’t want to just drop them into a huge new pot!
Be careful not to knock off the new roots while planting; they are still fragile. After a few weeks of further establishing roots, it’s safe to say you have a new thriving plant. You can repot the string of pearls into a slightly larger pot where it will live until it outgrows it.
Propagating String of Pearls in Soil
String of pearls plants can also be propagated in soil, much like the prickly pear cactus, which can be stuck right into soil without any time rooting in water. The steps for propagating string of pearls cuttings in soil are very similar to rooting them in water, except I’d make the cuttings a hair longer.
Instead of 3–5 inches, I’d recommend 5 inches so you can get them securely planted. You’ll still remove the leaves from the bottom third or so of the cutting to expose plenty of nodes. Then, instead of laying it in water to root, you’ll plant it gently in some well-draining potting soil. Don’t pack it down too tightly.
Take care not to over-water, and ensure you’ve got adequate drainage. Nothing will kill your new little baby quicker than water log! You could also lay the cutting out over soil and mist it to help it root. This is a similar process to propagating succulent leaf cuttings. The new plant should begin to root quickly.
Since string of pearls plants are so easy to propagate and grow, you can create many, many plants out of just one. They make wonderful gifts since they are so unique looking and easy to care for! Put a new plant in a cute pot with a nice note outlining care instructions—it’s the perfect gift for any aspiring or existing plant lover!
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