Ra­di­a­tor Plants


Ontario Gardener Magazine - - GARDEN FEATURES -

With lit­er­ally thou­sands of dif­fer­ent va­ri­eties of peper­o­mia, the only com­mon trait they share is a suc­cu­lent and fleshy leaf. Leaves vary in colour, size, tex­ture, shape and pat­tern, some even look like rosettes or se­dums. Peper­o­mia, P. ar­gyreia or watermelon peper­o­mia as it is re­ferred to, has sil­ver stripes with el­lip­ti­cal shaped leaves while the Peper­o­mia ob­tusi­fo­lia, or baby rub­ber plant has an up­right de­meanor.

There are nu­mer­ous va­ri­eties to choose from, and as they tend to re­main com­pact, they are suit­able for grow­ing in small spa­ces. The other trait peper­o­mias share is a ‘rat­tail flower’. The flow­ers are es­sen­tially long, thin spikes stick­ing out of the plant that re­sem­ble rat tails.

Th­ese rel­a­tively care-free plants pre­fer low to medium light and mod­er­ately dry soil. They will tol­er­ate flo­res­cent light­ing or sup­pos­edly even be­ing placed on a ra­di­a­tor, which is how they re­ceived their nick­name, though we don’t rec­om­mend that.

They will for­give a missed wa­ter­ing or two, but will start shedding leaves if you’ve missed too many. On the other hand over­wa­ter­ing will lead to rot. They are best wa­tered from below with­out soak­ing the crown of the plant.

Peper­o­mias are won­der­ful ad­di­tions to ter­rar­i­ums, dish planters or as fillers un­der larger pot­ted plants. They are eas­ily prop­a­gated from leaf or tip cuttings.

Peper­o­mia columbiana. Peper­o­mia ca­per­ata ' Lil­ian'. Peper­o­mia ne­vada. Peper­o­mia pros­trata.

Peper­o­mia mac­u­losa. Peper­o­mia ca­per­ata ' Abri­cos'. Kirsten'Peper­o­mia(Watermelon).'.ar­gyreia Peper­o­mia ca­per­ata

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