One of the easiest ways to propagate String of Turtles plant (Peperomia prostrata) is by using stem cuttings, which you can collect during pruning of this vining plant.
To do so, you would take a cutting that has a stem approximately 2” to 3” inches long with several leaf nodes and at least a couple of leaves on the petiole. Trim off the lower leaves.
Dust the stem with rooting hormone, but this is not entirely necessary.
Plant this cutting into a small pot containing slightly moist, well-draining potting mix. At least one of the nodes should be below the surface level of the soil.
Keep the cutting in a consistently warm (68° degrees Fahrenheit) sheltered area that provides bright, indirect light. Water enough to keep the soil slightly moist.
Using this simple method, you should see new growth within a couple of weeks. In addition to this method of propagation, there are a number of other successful ways to propagate the String of Turtles. In this article, we explore the possibilities. Read on to learn more.
How To Propagate Peperomia Prostrata Plants
String of Turtles is a semi-succulent, rambling plant bearing variegated, rounded leaves that look very much like a turtle shell. As a rambler, this plant has a propensity for propagation.
As a semi-succulent plant, it is a hardy, easy-care plant. These qualities combined make it very easy to end up with more of this delightful Peperomia than you had expected.
Luckily, because String of Turtles is sort of hard to find, having extras should never be a problem for you. Your gardening friends will probably be happy to take unwanted cuttings off your hands, and small, potted Peperomia prostrata plants make wonderful gifts.
3 Tips for Success
Use A Light Soil Potting Mix
When potting up String of Turtles cuttings, be sure to use a light, airy, sharply draining potting mix and a pot with drainage holes. Commercially prepared succulent or cactus mix will do.
Be Careful With Water
Remember that this plant is semi-succulent, so you should never overwater it. Both cuttings and established plants like to have slightly moist soil. You may also wish to mist your cuttings and plants occasionally to help keep humidity levels high.
Don’t Use Fertilizers Right Away
Cuttings should not be fertilized because the fresh soil you start them in should provide plenty of nourishment for the first year. After that, give established plants a light feeding of a generalized water-soluble houseplant fertilizer twice a month during the growing season.
How To Start a String of Turtles by Air Layering
It is also possible to propagate this easy-going plant by simply guiding long tendrils onto the surface of moist, fresh potting soil in nearby containers. Lay the runners on top of the soil and continue caring for the parent plant and the soil in the intended pots just as you would a mature Peperomia prostrata.
Watch for roots to form. When they do, anchor the tendrils to the soil using a hairpin or similar device. Clip the tendrils free from the parent plant and continue caring for your new Turtle Peperomia as a mature plant.
As an alternative to the air layering method, you can lay lengthy cuttings of String of Turtles on the surface of fresh, moist, well-draining soil. Care for them as described above. The cuttings will eagerly set down roots, just as if they were still attached to the parent plant.
Use Leaf Cuttings as a Last Resort
Propagating String of Turtles is also possible by just using leaves with long stems. You can poke these into the soil and care for them just as you would the stems of cuttings. It’s worth noting that this method is not quite as successful as the many alternatives.
Related: Details on Propagating Peperomias
How To Propagate String of Turtles in Water
Like many rambling succulent plants, this type of peperomia is also very easy to propagate in water. To do so, clip off and prepare some cuttings as you would for soil propagation and set them into a jar or a vase filled with fresh water.
Keep the jar or vase in a consistently warm setting that receives bright, indirect sunlight. Prevent stagnation by changing the water every couple of days. You should see some root growth right away, and when the roots are several inches long, you can transplant the cuttings into soil.
When transferring cuttings started in water into the soil, you should begin with a soil that is quite damp. Allow it to dry gradually, and when it has reached the slightly moist level, water lightly to keep it slightly moist.
The roots should take hold within a couple of weeks, and you can begin treating these plants as mature plants.