3 Easy Methods to Propagate Your String of Pearls

String of Pearls (Curio rowleyanus) is a daisy flowering succulent vine unique with its leaves like peas and a chain-like string of stems crawling into open spaces and rooting new branches as it goes.

They are also commonly called a string of Beads, the string of Peas, or the Rosary Vine, and rightly so; their stems are unusually patterned like a chain of beads in such a mesmerizing straight chain; they are commonly propagated for decorating and beautifying the environment.

Propagating String of Pearls

String of Pearls

They have developed excellent survival capabilities that make them ideal as indoor and outdoor ornamental plants, thriving even in freezing conditions.

They can be propagated all year round, but it’s best to avoid growing them in winter, as they’ll be busy spreading their way into newer regions of their environment.

You can propagate String of Pearls by cuttings, usually stems cuttings. Some enthusiastic propagators also like to try the leaf cuttings, although the chances of success are only somewhat guaranteed

Preparing the Stem Cuttings

String of Pearls Cuttings

First, identify the strings you wish to cut. The selected strings must look lush and healthy, with no markings, dark spots, or discoloration.

Cut off the selected strings using a clean pair of scissors or a sharp knife. Each string cutting should be at least 4 inches long, bearing up to 3 good leaf peas at minimum.

Place the pearl strings on a dry, warm surface for a day to allow the cut to heal correctly; then remove the pearls at the base of each string.

Now your cuttings are set for rooting; rooting can be done in water or an enriched soil mix potting.

1. Rooting the Pearl Cuttings in Water

This is my ideal method of rooting the string of Pearls cuttings; the process adds to the overall aesthetic appeal of my home garden.

But not that I’m trying to be biased here; rooting them in water is faster than in a soil mix potting. Whenever I root the Pearl Cuttings in water, they’re usually ready for transplanting in less than a month.

  • Get a glass jar or vase and pour water in it up to 3 inches.
  • Next, place the string of Pearls cuttings that are healed into the water. Depending on its capacity, you can put more than one cutting in the same glass jar.
  • You should change the water in the jar once every week to keep it fresh and prevent the accumulation of disease-causing parasites in the plant.

You can transplant the rooted cuttings to a soil mix potting once the roots are up to 2 inches in length or more.

2. Rooting the String of Pearls Cuttings in a Soil Potting

This is the easiest way to root your pearl cuttings because it happens naturally. The Pearl strings naturally grow new roots whenever they touch soil while spreading.

  • Get your soil potting mix ready. A string of Pearls will grow in any succulent soil mix.
  • Ensure the pot has drain holes beneath and at the sides for easy airflow and excess water.
  • Pour some soil mix into the potting and make little pits up to 1 inch on the surface.
  • Dip the calloused edges of the Pearl strings into a rooting hormone (natural honey is excellent, too) to speed up the rooting process.
  • Insert the calloused pearl cuttings into the holes and fill the pot with more soil mix.
  • Place the potting in clear view of indirect sunlight
  • Wait to water the set-up until the next day. Afterwards, only water when the soil texture looks dry, flaky, and brittle.
  • Place the potting near a bright window with sufficient indirect sunlight. Your cuttings should be well rooted after one or two months.

3. Propagating String of Pearls from Single Pearls

The process is quite interesting, and the results are positive if rightly done—time to put your curiosity and resilience to the test.

  1. First, make a clean cut of a healthy string bearing as many pearls as possible.
  2. Remove each pearl gently from the string and allow them to heal overnight.
  3. Get your Potting ready by filling the container with your enriched succulents potting mix or cactus mix. Ensure the soil mix is moist and well aerated, but not damp or soggy.
  4. Place each pearl gently on the surface of the soil mix. You don’t need to dig them into the soil because that will destroy their viability.
  5. The potting should be set close to a window to receive adequate Indirect sunlight.
  6. Now your job is to keep the soil moist but not sloshing.

Your pearls should start developing tender roots in 4-6 weeks.

Water Preferences of String of Pearls

They are successful succulents, so developing water storage organs is pivotal to their survival.

The string of Pearls doesn’t require too much watering; their pea-like leaves are adapted as efficient water storage organs.

They don’t do well in humid areas, so propagating them in your kitchen or bathroom will constrain their success.

They may become dormant in summer when they bloom, and at such times, you shouldn’t water them more than once in two or three weeks.

They always enjoy the old-fashioned watering method, so avoid misting their pearls; you can mist the soil when the cuttings are still rooting in soil potting.

They’re easy garden plants to propagate and maintain, but overwatering them could eventually kill the plants.

Sunlight Preferences of the String of Pearls

The string of pearls is indigenous to the arid climates of southwest Africa, so they love the sunshine.

However, they prefer to crawl through the woods, entirely steering clear of direct sunlight while multiplying under the shade of others.

They grow brilliantly under bright, shiny indirect sunlight.

The trick is to allow them to enjoy up to six hours of bright sunlight daily, to keep them blooming and spreading.

The early morning bright and sunny sunshine is excellent for them to flourish, but you shouldn’t keep them under the hot intensity of the mid-day sun.

For indoor propagation, keeping them by the eastern or southern windows gives them sufficient indirect sunshine to keep them happy.

Soil Requirements of String of Pearls

Their favorite soil mix should be delicate, feathery, lightweight, sandy, and well-aerated, just like the succulents and cactus mix. Preparing a homemade blend of three parts potting soil and one part fine sand is ideal for promoting good drainage.

My favorite position for this desert wonder is to propagate them in baskets hanging on a wall; that way, their wandering strings can be seen spiraling down the basket edges in an eye-catching cascade.

How long do String of Pearls Live?

They usually start slowing down their growth and expansion processes after 4-5 years and eventually die. They’re one of the most popular short-lived perennial plants, adding as much as fifteen inches to their length annually.

You can keep propagating them, though, if you always want to have a hanging basket of their dripping strings hanging on your walls.

Hanging them at heights above five feet is also safe for infants and pets in the house. A string of Pearls is categorized at levels two and four on the toxicity scale, so they’re not to be eaten.

Some side effects of ingestion include skin irritation, dizziness, diarrhea, and vomiting.

This in no way undermines their allure; you just wait till summer and watch them bloom beautiful tender-looking attractive flowers with their characteristic cinnamon-like piquant fragrances.

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