The Peperomia Golden Gate is a hybrid of the Peperomia obtusifolia. As such, its complete name is Peperomia obtusifolia Golden Gate. Although some people also call it the
- Baby Rubber Plant
- Peperomia obtusifolia variegatum
The plant is best known for its beautiful variegated leaves which feature green , yellow and cream colors. It is a compact plant that can bushy if you take good care of it.
It is native to the Caribbean, Central and South America. Although you’ll see quite a few being grown in Florida as well because the weather suits is tropical preference.
How to do you care for the Peperomia Golden Gate? Keep the plant in a well-lit location but away from direct sunlight. I enjoys warm, humid weather and is not cold hardy.
Like other peperomia, it does not like wet feet so make sure to allow the soil dry out between waterings. Also, use well-draining soil.
Peperomia Golden Gate Plant Care
The Peperomia Golden Gate has variegated leaves which means that light plays a very important part in keeping the plant healthy. It is also essential in maintaining its beautiful foliage.
Variegated leaves mean that not all the sections of the leaves collect sunlight, only the green ones. As such, the plant needs more light than a regular Peperomia obtusifolia which has solid green leaves.
However, it also cannot tolerate direct sunlight for more than 1-2 hours a day on a consistent basis.
This means that it will do best in medium to bright, indirect light. It will likewise be happy in dappled, diffused or filtered light.
Avoid low light as much as possible.
If it gets too little light, you’ll notice its leaves turn more green.
This is its response as it tries to survive on the insufficient lighting. To do so, it will produce more chlorophyll which are what absorb light from the sun use in photosynthesis. It does this in hopes of producing enough energy from whatever light it can collect to support itself.
So, when you see your Peperomia Golden Gate’s leaves turn more green, consider moving it to a brighter location.
On the other hand, too much direct sunlight or very strong, intense light can make its leaves turn pale in color. In a worse situation, they can get sunburned.
This is why medium to bright, indirect light is ideal indoors. And the best spot for that is near an east facing window.
Outdoors, partial shade will keep the plant healthy and allow it to maintain its lovely variegations.
The Peperomia Golden Gate has an ideal temperature of 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. It enjoys warm weather as it is a tropical plant.
This means can grow outdoors in USDA Hardiness Zones 10-12 even through the winter. That’s because these regions have warm, sunny climate during November through March.
In contrast, the plant is better off indoors as a houseplant.
You can still take out outdoors during the summer when the weather is warm. But make sure to take it back inside before the cold sets in later in the year.
The Peperomia Golden Gate has a hard time in temperatures below 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
The longer it stays there the more it will struggle. Initially, you’ll see its growth slow down. But as the temperature drops farther it can come to the point where the plant experiences cold damage.
Therefore, keep it away from air conditioners and cold drafts indoors.
Outdoors, avoid wintertime.
The Peperomia Golden Gate can tolerate low humidity which makes it easier to care for indoors. As such, you won’t experience issues with it even if you have dry air in your home.
It is able to do this because of its fleshy succulent-like leaves.
These leaves store water allowing the plant to tolerate low humidity. It also lets you withstand dry periods.
Another reason is that like other peperomia varieties, the plant gets most of its moisture through its root system and not its leaves. Therefore, it does not mind that the air is dreir.
As long as you keep the plant properly hydrated through the soil, the Peperomia Golden Gate will do well.
That said, like all tropical plants, it will grow best when kept in moderate to high humidity. Ideally, it prefers humidity between 40% to 70%.
How Often to Water Peperomia Golden Gate
Allow the soil to dry between waterings. This is very important since the plant is susceptible to overwatering.
Again, the reason for this is the plant’s ability to store moisture in its succulent-like leaves.
While these are beneficial in that they allow it to tolerate some drought, it also works against you in that they can easily get too much water (since they already have some stored up).
So, to avoid watering your Peperomia Golden Gate too frequently, wait until the top 2 inches of soil completely dry or is at least dry to the touch before you add water.
This makes checking the soil before each time you water essential.
If you want to stay on the safe side, you can wait until the soil is dry about halfway down.
This will eliminate the risk of overwatering. At the same time, the roots will still have enough hydration to keep them happy.
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Peperomia Golden GatePotting Soil
The best potting soil for Peperomia Golden Gate is loose, well-draining and rich in organic matter. Good drainage is important because it prevents waterlogging.
This is especially true if you happen to overwater your plant.
The soil will be able to quickly drain out excess water to prevent it keeping the roots wet for too long.
Too much water is a problem because if the roots are left sitting in water for long periods of time, they will suffocate. The excess liquid will prevent them from breathing.
This is when root rot occurs.
It is also why soil with good drainage helps.
The simplest way to create this kind of soil is to combine 1 part regular potting soil with 1 part perlite. This 50-50 mix will give the soil the ability to hold enough water to keep the roots happily hydrated. And the perlite will provide the drainage and aeriation needed so they roots don’t end up getting waterlogged.
In addition to using the right kind of soil, make sure your pot comes with drainage holes at the bottom as well.
These holes will allow the excess water that drains from the soil to drip out of the pot instead of just accumulating at the bottom of the container.
The Peperomia Golden Gate will do okay without plant food. But it will grow faster, be healthier and have better leaf color if you give it fertilizer.
However, note that you do not want to overfeed this plant.
It is a light feeder. So, the goal is to give it what it needs and move on.
Too much fertilizer is harmful because these products contain salt. Manufacturers use salt as a transport mechanism to allow the roots to efficiently absorb the nutrient.
But once the plant has done that and the water evaporates, what you’re left with is the salt.
And the more you use fertilizer, the more salt builds up in soil.
Unfortunately, plants don’t like salt. And if too much salt builds up in the soil, it becomes toxic to the plant.
When this happens, the salts cause fertilizer burn on the roots, which will damage them.
As such, fertilizer can work for and against the plant. So, moderation is key.
To feed the Peperomia Golden Gate, use a balanced liquid fertilizer once a month during its growing season. Dilute it to half strength. And never apply when the soil is dry.
Since the plant’s growth significantly slows down once the cold weather comes around, you can stop feeding by early to mid-fall. Don’t give the plant fertilizer during winter.
The Peperomia Golden Gate is a slow grower and will not grow big. As such, it does not need pruning although you can trim it every now and then to keep a shape or look you want.
The plant is mostly composed of its leaves, so you want to keep as much of the foliage as possible.
However, you can prune the plant if you want to encourage it to grow more.
You can do this if you want it to get bushier.
As with other peperomia varieties. The Golden Gate can produce flowers. But these are insignificant and small.
So, most growers will prune them in order to let the plant focus all its energy of foliage production and development.
How to Propagate Peperomia Golden Gate
The most efficient way to propagate Peperomia Golden Gate is from stem cuttings.
I don’t recommend leaf cuttings although this method works as well. The reason is that you’ll likely end up with non-variegated new plants.
Thus, I’ve noticed that stem cuttings are more reliable to ensure that the new plants also have the variegations their parent has.
Here’s how to propagate Peperomia Golden Gate from stem cuttings.
- Take a healthy stem cutting with at least a few leaves on it.
- Prepare a small pot and fill it with fresh, well-draining potting mix. You can use the recipe above.
- Dip the end of the stem in rooting hormone. This is optional though.
- Plant the cutting so a good portion (but not all) of the stem is in the soil. Remove any leaves that end up in the soil but keep the upper leaves.
- Water the soil and keep it moist
- Leave the pot in bright, indirect light with good humidity.
- In about 4 weeks, roots will develop and start to get established in the soil.
In a few months, you’ll see leaves develop as well.
How to Repot or Transplant Peperomia Golden Gate
Like pruning, repotting is likewise a low maintenance task when it comes to the Peperomia Golden Gate.
You’ll only need to repot the plant every 2-3 years.
Additionally, it will never get big, so you won’t need a large pot.
Another thing worth considering is that the plant likes being root bound. In fact, it grows best in this condition.
So, you can leave it tight in its pot for a while.
However, part a certain point, the pot will get overcrowded. When this happens, the plant will get stressed, it will stop growing and you may see it wilt as well.
Thus, don’t overdo it.
The best time to repot the plant is spring to early summer.
And you’ll know when to do this once you see quite a few roots coming out from the bottom holes under the pot. This is your cue.
Is It Toxic/Poisonous to Humans, Cats & Dogs
This peperomia plant is not toxic. So, you don’t need to take any special precaution when it comes to where you want to put the plant indoors.
It does not pose any poison risk to humans or pets. So, you don’t need to worry about letting young children, dogs or cats run around the house with the plant there.
Peperomia Golden Gate Problems & Troubleshooting
Mealybugs, spider mites, aphids and scale are the most common pests that will try to attack your plant.
For the most part the Peperomia Golden Gate has good resistance to them. So, there’s a likely chance that you’ll never need to deal with any of these bugs.
However, there is no guaranteed.
As such, regular inspection is still good practice.
This will let you spot any pests early when there are only few on them.
Pests do the most damage when they’ve grown in number, which they can do quite rapidly. So, don’t let days go by without treating them.
Instead, immediately treat the insects with neem oil or insecticidal soap once you see any.
Because the plant is susceptible to overwatering, it will be at risk for root rot as well.
Root rot is very dangerous because it spreads out of sight. The roots are hidden under the soil so by the time you notice its symptoms on the leaves and stems, there has been damage to the root system already.
Therefore, prevention is a much better option.
And you can prevent root rot from happening by avoiding overwatering and waterlogged soil.
This means not watering too often (waiting for the soil to dry first), using well-draining soil and a pot with holes.