Peperomia San Marino Plant Care with Success

The Peperomia San Marino is a hybrid that was a result of crossing a Peperomia marmorata with a Peperomia peruviana cultivar.

Interestingly enough, the resulting plant looks very much like a Peperomia rosso if you do not look closely.

That said, the two are different plants with the Peperomia San Marino being smaller than the Rosso. Its leaves also have a lighter green color.

How do you care for the Peperomia San Marino? Allow the soil to dry between waterings. Also make sure to use well-draining soil. The plant is a tropical one, so it enjoys bright, indirect light, warm temperatures and high humidity. It is generally easy to care for and low maintenance. And you can easily propagate it from stem or leaf cuttings.

Peperomia San Marino Plant Care

Light Requirements

The Peperomia San Marino will thrive in bright, indirect light. However, avoid direct sunlight as this can burn its leaves.

Note that the plant has variegations. This means that will benefits (and needs) more light compared to peperomia varieties with solid green leaves.

This makes a spot near an east facing window where it gets the gentle morning sun ideal.

The plant gets a lot of bright light that is not harsh or too strong.

You can likewise put it facing the west although you do want to be wary of the afternoon sun which is more intense that that of the morning.

On the other hand, because of its variegations, the Peperomia San Marino is not well-suited for low light.

It can tolerate some low light but after a certain threshold, you’ll see its leaves lose their variegations as the plant turns more green.

This is its way to compensating for the lack of light.

It does so by increasing the production of chlorophyll. Chlorophyll not only makes leaves green in color, they are also the substance that absorb light.

In turn the plant uses the light absorbed and turns it into glucose (sugars) which it will use for energy.

Therefore, turning its leaves more green is basically sacrificing its looks in order to support itself (and survive).

If it does not absorb sufficient light, it will be able produce less energy.

As a result, it will grow slower, produce fewer and small leaves. The plant will also get weaker and weaker.

This is why you see these symptoms when you leave a plant in a dim or dark area.

 

Temperature

The Peperomia San Marino prefers temperatures between 65 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

This makes it perfect for indoor care since most homes maintain this level. The reason being that people feel most comfortable in this climate.

This makes the plant easy to care for in this regard. And you don’t need to do anything to accommodate it.

Because it is a tropical plant, it can easily tolerate warmer conditions as well.

In fact, it won’t have a problem staying in 90-95 degrees temperatures.

However, if you monitor the plant very closely, you’ll noticed that it grows the fasted in its ideal temperature range. And the farther away you go from this range, the slower it will grow.

On the other hand, an important thing to keep in mind is that the Peperomia San Marino has low tolerance to the cold.

And it does not do well in temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit.

Therefore, try to avoid leaving it in spots where the temperature can drop below that.

Indoors, this means keeping it away from air conditioners and cold drafts.

Outdoors, this entails bringing it inside once the weather drops by around fall. Never leave the plant outside during winter as it will not survive frost or freezing conditions.

 

Humidity

The Peperomia San Marino enjoys humid conditions. Again, this comes from its tropical habitat.

Thus, if you want to see it grow at its best, keep it somewhere with humidity between 40% and 70%. This will allow it to grow faster and produce more lush looking foliage.

That said, what makes this plant easy to care for is it can tolerate low humidity.

So, in most cases, you won’t have to worry about humidity even if you live somewhere with dry air.

Why?

Because its fleshy, succulent-like leaves store water.

This allows it to tolerate drought and also lower humidity.

The other unique thing about peperomia plants is that they take most of their water from their roots. As such, the leaves don’t need to get a lot of moisture from the air.

This allows them to tolerate lower humidity compared to other houseplants.

 

Related

 

How Often to Water Peperomia San Marino

The Peperomia San Marino does not need frequent watering. Again, this is because of tis succulent-like leaves.

Since its leaves store moisture, it can last longer without water. Similarly, this allows it to tolerate longer periods of dryness or drought.

However, like all things the fleshy leaves have their disadvantages as well.

One if because the plant stores water and therefore, has enough moisture. it also becomes more susceptible to overwatering.

As such, it is not a good idea to water your Peperomia San Marino the same way you water other plants.

It requires less water.

Therefore, it is best to wait until the top 2 inches of soil have dried completely before you add more water.

Alternatively, you can likewise be more conservative and wait until the soil is dry about 50% of the way down.

Anywhere in between these two levels will keep the plant happy.

When you water, do so by soaking then draining.

What this means is water the root ball until it is completely saturated. You’ll know as the water will drip from the bottom of the pot.

Once this happens, allow the soil to completely drain before returning the plant to its original spot.

The first part ensures the roots gets the water they need (and want). The second part makes sure that they plant does not end up sitting in water.

By draining it completely, you leave the soil moist but not wet.

Just as importantly, there’s enough air getting to the roots.

 

Peperomia San Marino Potting Soil

The best soil for Peperomia San Marino has good aeration and excellent drainage. Again, this has to do with the plant’s susceptibility to overwatering.

In addition to having succulent-like leaves, the San Marino Peperomia is an epiphyte.

This means that its roots need water as much as they need air.

Therefore, the soil needs to be able to hold some water to hydrate the roots. But they also need to be able to quickly get rid of the excess moisture so that the plant does not end up sitting in water.

By doing so, the roots get enough water and the soil drainage removes excess liquid so the roots get the air they need.

A simple way to achieve this is to use a combination of:

  • 2 parts peat moss
  • 1 part perlite.

If you want to use something more sustainably and eco-friendly, swap the peat moss for coco coir.

In any case, this potting mix gives you the water retention ability from the peat moss to keep the roots hydrated. But you have the perlite to ensure fast drainage as well.

 

Fertilizer

The Peperomia San Marino will benefit from fertilizer. Although, it is worth noting that it will be okay if you don’t feed it.

The difference is that it will grow faster and produce more foliage when given the nutrients.

But the important thing to keep in mind when using fertilizer is not to add too much. Using too much plant food, applying too often or using an overconcentrated dose will likely leave your plant with fertilizer burn.

Thus, damaging the roots.

Instead, only feed the Peperomia San Marino during its growing season (spring and summer). Don’t fertilize it during fall and winter.

Use a balanced houseplant fertilizer once a month diluted to half strength.

 

Pruning

The Peperomia San Marino is a slow grower that can reach about 8 inches high and 12 inches from side to size. Thus, it won’t growth as tall as its leaves will spread out to the sides.

If you look at the plant, you’ll notice it looks like the Peperomia Eden Rosso (or Peperomia Rosso).

Both look alike and have similar growth habits.

But the Peperomia San Marino is smaller and its leaves are a lighter green in color.

That said, the small, compact shape of the plant means that it does not need much pruning.

Of course, you can prune its leaves to encourage it grow more Also, you can trim them a bit if some get too long, especially out towards, the sides.

But overall, the plant is low maintenance when it comes to pruning.

 

How to Propagate Peperomia San Marino

The two most efficient ways to propagate the Peperomia San Marino are leaf cuttings and stem cuttings.

The two are very similar to one another in that you’re taking cuttings from the parent plant and allowing it to grow on its own.

As time passes, these cuttings will eventually turn into mature plants themselves.

The difference between the two methods is that one uses stems and the other uses leaves.

Stem cutting is done by taking a healthy stem from your Peperomia San Marino. You want to choose a stem that is long enough so you can bury part of the stem in soil. Also make sure that it has a few leaves on it.

Next, prepare a pot and fill it with well-draining potting soil.

Then plant the stem cutting into the soil. Remove any leaves that end up in the soil but leave the upper leaves intact.

Water the soil until moist and place the new plant in bright, indirect light with good humidity.

Stem cuttings will take about 4 weeks or so to root.

Leaf cuttings are done by taking leaves from the plant. I like to take a few leaves because not all the leaves tend to propagate successfully all the time.

Plant the leaf cuttings into well-draining soil in a pot. Arrange them in a neat way so there is good spacing between them.

Water the soil and place the leaf cuttings in a well-lit location with no direct sunlight.

It takes about 4 to 8 weeks for leaf cuttings to root.

 

How to Repot or Transplant Peperomia San Marino

The Peperomia San Marino does not need frequent repotting. In fact, it only requires repotting once every 2-3 years.

This is a due to its slow growth rate and small root system. Similarly, the plant will never grow to be big either. So, you don’t have to bother about very large pots.

Instead, when repotting, choose a pot that is one size larger. This will be more than enough.

The best time to repot is during spring t early summer.

It is also important to be aware that in addition to its root system being small, the plant’s root are fragile. This means that you want to be careful when handling them during unpotting and repotting as they can easily be damaged.

 

Is It Toxic/Poisonous to Humans, Cats & Dogs

This plant is not toxic. Nevertheless, make sure that your pets don’t chew or eat it.

While it does not pose a poison risk, it can cause your cat or dog or gag or choke. It can also lead to diarrhea or constipation which does happen then they eat things they’re not supposed to.

 

Problems & Troubleshooting

Pests

Spider mites are the most problematic pests for the Peperomia San Marino. That’s because they cause the most damage.

That said, mealybugs, thrips, aphids and scale are some other pests that like to attack the plant.

These are sap suckers. And they enjoy feeding on the fleshy leaves of the plant.

The problem is by doing so they take its sap which consists of water and nutrients. So, as the number of bugs grow, the plant gets weaker as it loses moisture and nutrients.

So, if you spot any immediately treat it with neem oil. This may take a while depending on how bad the infestation has gotten.

 

Diseases

Overwatering is the biggest threat to the plant. And this can lead to root rot is consistently done.

As such, it is very important to always wait until the soil dries before adding more water.

Similarly, using a well-draining potting mix will prevent the soil from holding on to too much liquid. Thus, preventing waterlogging.

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