Peperomia Pink Lady

The Peperomia Pink Lady ranks among the most sought after peperomias because of its unique colors. Just in case you were wondering, its full name is Peperomia caperata Pink Lady.

And yes, it is a sport of the very popular Peperomia caperata, which happens to be one of my daughter’s favorite varieties because it produces the most beautiful varieties and hybrids.

If you look around, you’ll see all sorts of amazing colors you never knew peperomias had. Also, they have stunning looks as well.

Here’s just a few examples of beautiful Peperomia caperata varieties and hybrids:

  • Emerald Ripple Peperomia
  • Peperomia Quito
  • Peperomia Napoli Nights
  • Peperomia Moonlight
  • Peperomia Rosso
  • Peperomia Red Luna
  • Peperomia Maculata
  • Peperomia Abrico
  • Peperomia Frost

Peperomia Pink Lady features a compact growth habit that’s adorned with thick, fleshy, heart shaped leaves. These leaves have a unique rippled texture.

But, its biggest draw are its green white-cream and pink colored leaves. These start out as green with cream variegations. And as the plant matures, the splashes of pink appear.

Part of its beauty is the unpredictability of the colors and patterns. Therefore, none of the leaves look the same.  The plant also has short stems which make the leaves the main attraction since they’ll cover the top part of the plant.

It is worth noting that the Peperomia Pink Lady is not a succulent despite having succulent-like leaves. Some people will call it a semi-succulent. However, because its other features are different, the plant is not a true succulent.

Last but not least, this beauty is native to Brazil and parts of South America. As such, it easily adapts to the average home environment.

Peperomia Pink Lady Plant Care

Light Requirements

The Peperomia Pink Lady thrives when given moderate to bright indirect light. This will allow it to maintain its beautiful colors including the unique pink hues.

Incidentally, the pink variegations also make it tolerate more light.

However, you want to be careful with too much intense light or exposure to direct sun. Both of these can cause its leaves to get discolored or even burn.

That said, the plant can tolerate early morning (before 10:30 a.m.) and later afternoon sun (after 4:00 p.m.) without any problems.

This is why an east facing window is ideal for the plant. It provides a lot of bright light without being overly harsh.

On the other hand, if you place your Peperomia Pink Lady in the west or south facing window, you want to be wary of the hottest times of the day (10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.). Keep the plant away from the sun’s rays during these times.

The easiest way is to distance it from the window. Somewhere in the middle of the room or even as far as 10-12 feet away in brightly lit rooms.

Another option is to use sheer curtains or a shade cloth if you want to position the plant somewhere there is direct sun. This way it gets protected from the rays (which are filtered by these objects)>

From experience, I’ve found that the best location to keep your Peperomia Pink Lady is anywhere it can see the sky as long as it is not in the direct path of the sun’s yellow rays.

Outdoors, a semi-shade location works really well.

 

Temperature

When it comes to climate, the  Peperomia caperata Pink Lady does best in moderate to warm environments. It gets this trait from the Peperomia caperata which is native to the tropical forests of South America.

Thus, the plant is used to warm (and hot) humid weather. And does not see frost or snow.

As such, it is best suited for USDA Hardiness Zones 10 through 12 where the sun is out all year round and there is no snow during the wintertime.

For places that have colder weather, it is often kept as a houseplant. Although, you can still bring it outdoors during the summertime to enjoy fresh air.

Indoors, the best temperature for the Pink Lady Peperomia is between 65 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. This is the exact range we humans like which is one of the reasons the plant is easy to care for.

It is likewise able to tolerate temperature from 90 to 100 degrees without an problems. But, the same is not true for colder conditions. Here, you want to keep the plant away from anything below 50 degrees.

 

Humidity

Humidity is another aspect that makes the plant easy to care for.

Given a choice, the Peperomia Pink Lady prefers moderate to high humidity (60% and higher). But, because it has thick, fleshy leaves it is able easy adapt and tolerate lower humidity.

Thus, I have not seen it fuss or show any ill-effects from average room humidity. The only exception I can think of when you want to be wary is if you live in a desert environment (like Arizona or Nevada). Or experience very hot, dry summers.

Beyond that, I haven’t seen the need to help the plant out in terms of humidity.

This is a good thing considering that misting can be a problem for the plant. That’s because it is sensitive to too much moisture. This not only attracts fungus gnats but can increase its already high risk of overwatering.

Therefore, I don’t recommend misting the plant unless you absolutely need to (when it shows signs of dryness).

 

How Often to Water Peperomia Pink Lady

The Peperomia Pink Lady enjoys moderate watering although it does better (and stays safer) when you allow it to dry a bit.

To explain, the plant prefers moist soil conditions during the summer. But because it is very prone to overwatering, you want to make sure that you’re not overwatering the plant such that the soil gets soggy.

This becomes a bigger risk in the winter when the weather gets cold, the plant is not actively growing and there’s less sun. Thus, the soil takes much longer to dry.

In general, I water my Pink Lady Peperomia once every 7 days during the summer and closer to once every 12 to 14 days during the winter.

However, I suggest that you only take these figures as guidelines not rules. Instead, I recommend that you water based on what the plant is telling you. Here are a few ways to tell when to water your Peperomia Pink Lady. Choose any of them that seems to work best for you.

  • Lift the pot up – this takes experience and practice to get a feel of the pot when the soil still has enough moisture or is dry. But once you get the hang of it, it becomes very easy. A heavier pot means you can wait a few more days before watering. A light pot means it is ready to be watered.
  • Squeeze its leaves – the Peperomia Pink Lady’s fleshy leaves hold water. When they have enough moisture, they’ll feel firm. On the other hand they’ll feel softer and be flatter when they lack water.
  • Finger test – again, this requires a bit of feel. Insert your index finger into the soil down to the second knuckle. When you take it out use your thumb to feel the tip of your index finger. If there’s any moistness, wait. If your fingertip is completely, dry, it is time to water.
  • Moisture meter – this is even simpler. Just stick the probe into the soil and read the numbered labels. It will tell you if the soil is dry, moist or wet. Water once it gets to dry.
  • Wooden stick test – this is my favorite. It is free and cheap. Plus, no experience or feel needed. Just insert a wooden stick (wooden chopsticks, skewer or any other wooden cylindrical item will do). Push it down all the way until it hits the bottom of the pot. When you take the stick out, you’ll see the wet area which signifies until where the water is. I like to wait until the water line between 50% and 75% dry.

 

Peperomia Pink Lady Potting Soil

The best potting soil for the Pink Lady Peperomia is well-draining and airy. Adding in some nutrients and keeping soil pH at 6.0 and 6.6 will also optimize growth.

That said, the most important thing is to give the plant well-draining soil because of its sensitivity to overwatering.

I will never forget losing my first few peperomias because I kept reading guides telling me to keep the soil moist. This was a mistake.

Instead, I prefer to keep the soil on the dry side. And having well-draining soil will help you avoid too much water. You definitely want to avoid using only regular potting soil since it retains too much moisture. instead, mix it with something that drains excess moisture.

Here are some ways to easily achieve the right potting soil for your Peperomia Pink Lady just by using 2 or 3 ingredients. The combinations are:

  • Potting soil with orchid bark and charcoal
  • Potting soil with coco coir and perlite
  • Succulent mix and coco coir
  • Potting soil and perlite or pumice
  • Potting soil with orchid bark

To help the plant grow, I also like to top dress the soil with compost. You can use worm castings as well.

 

Fertilizer

Fertilizing is likewise simple and straightforward. I prefer to use a liquid houseplant fertilizer with a balanced N-P-K formulation. Then I just dilute the dose to half strength using water and pour it on the soil.

The Peperomia Pink Lady is a light feeder. It is also a small plant with a small, non-extensive root system. Therefore, you want to avoid giving it tons of plant food since it does not need it.

Feed only during the spring and summer. No need to feed in the winter.

 

Pruning

My Peperomia Pink Lady is currently about 6 to 7 inches tall and it looks like it can grow to about the size of my Peperomia caperata.

Therefore, I believe that you can expect it to get to around 8 to 12 inches or so over time.

That said, I keep mind on a table top so height is not something I want it to achieve. Instead, I want it to get full and bushy where the leaves kind of layer over one another and the plant gets a bit wider on the sides.

The thing I want to avoid is a sparse plant and one with excessively long stems. I find that this makes it lose its lovely compact, full look.

Therefore, when I see stems that get long I trim them off. This is very light maintenance that you do whenever do see them. Usually one to two every so often. So not a lot of work.

That said, pruning is mostly aesthetics and remove the dead or damaged leaves. This way you can shape your plant.

 

How to Propagate Peperomia Pink Lady

Stem and leaf propagation are the two most common ways to clone the plant. They also work really well, because you get the same plant when it grows up. This way, you already know how to take care for it and its looks will more or less be the same.

Therefore, no unpleasant surprises.

Of the two, leaf propagation is the more popular method for home growers. Although I am more biased to stem propagation because I’m kind of impatient.

In general, using stem cuttings allow the new plant to root faster and subsequently produce new growth earlier as well.

In any case, both methods have very high success rates. So, go with the one you’re most comfortable with.

Peperomia Pink Lady Leaf Propagation

Take one or multiple leaf cuttings. You can take the leaf from the top of the plant or from the base. And you can use a leaf cutting with the petiole or cut the leaf in half and propagate that.

Once you have the leaf cutting, dip it in rooting hormone. If you cut the leaf if half, cover the edges with rooting hormone. If you took the leaf with the petiole, dip the stalk and part of the bottom of the leaf in rooting hormone.

Then, plant the leaf cutting in well-draining potting mix.

Keep the soil moist but avoid getting it wet or soggy. Make sure to sue a pot with drainage holes.

If you’re propagating many leaf cuttings at the same time, space them out evenly on the soil.

Leave the cuttings under bright, indirect light in a warm spot.

I also like to put up a plastic tent over the cuttings (that don’t touch the plants) to keep moisture in. This increases humidity which helps them grow faster. However, if you do this, make sure to take the plastic off every so often to let fresh air in (and get rid of excess trapped moisture).

It will take about 4 to 6 weeks for roots to grow. After that, you can move the cuttings to their own individual containers.

Peperomia Pink Lady Stem Propagation

Stem cuttings is very similar to leaf cuttings. But you’ll be using stems instead.

  • Again, you can take stems from the base of the plant or stem tips towards the top. Ideally, choose healthy stems with at least 2 leaves on it.
  • Remove leaves that are very low on the stem to expose more of the stem. This will make it easier to get the stem in water or in soil.
  • If you decide to propagate the stem cutting in water, submerge a good part of the stem in the water. I like to use a glass jar so I can see the roots as they form. Remove any leaves that will end up in the water because they will eventually rot.
  • If you decide to propagate in soil, bury the stem in well-draining potting mix. Again, keep the leaves above the soil and remove any that end up in the soil). Water the soil and keep it moist.

Stem cuttings will root faster than leaf cuttings. And you should see first signs or root (albeit small) in about 7 to 10 days. I will take another 3 weeks or so before the roots get longer.

If you used water propagation, you’ll need to move the new plant to soil eventually, although there’s no hurry. I have friends who’ve kept their cuttings in water for over 2 years. But once you get past 12 months or so, rotting happens so you need to regularly prune the rotted roots.

 

How to Repot or Transplant Peperomia Pink Lady

I got my Peperomia Pink Lady is a 4 inch pot which makes it quite a bit bigger than what you may see in some stores. I’ve seen quite a few sellers go with 2 inch pots.

Either way works and if you get a smaller plant, you’ll be able to enjoy the early journey of allowing it to get bigger.

That said, the Pink Lady Peperomia is not a fast grower. Nor does it have an extensive root system that will dig deep and wide.

Therefore, it does well in these small pots and will eventually end up with a 5 inch or so pot.

This means avoid going up more than one pot size when you repot. It does not need the extra space and the excess soil will increase its risk of overwatering.

Also, the only time you need to repot is when its roots come out from the holes under the container. This means it takes about 2 to 4 years before you need to move it.

 

Is It Toxic/Poisonous to Humans, Cats & Dogs

No, the Peperomia Pink Lady is non-toxic to humans and animals including dogs and cats. This makes it safe to keep the plant within the reach of young children and pets at home.

Even if they ingest parts of the plant, including the leaves and stems, there won’t be any risk of toxicity or poisoning.

 

Peperomia Pink Lady Problems & Troubleshooting

Yellow Leaves

Unfortunately, there are a few reasons for yellow leaves with your Peperomia Pink Lady. Thse include

  • Too much sun or direct sunlight
  • Sudden or dramatic change in temperature
  • Watering issues

Therefore, you want to eliminate each issue one by one. I like to start with light because it is the easiest to check and fix. Then feel the soil if it is wet or dry. This will let you figure out if improper water caused the yellow leaves.

 

Drooping & Wilting

Overwatering and under-watering are both potential causes wilting.

If the plant lacks water, it will wilt but you’ll also see wrinkled leaves that feel crispy and dry. The tips are particularly known for crisping so I like to check those first.

Then feel the soil. If it feels dry, then the plant needs water.

With overwatering, you may see wilting along with leaves dropping and discoloration. Again, to confirm, check the soil. This time, it will feel mucky and soggy due to too much liquid.

 

Dropping Leaves

If the plant sheds one or two leaves infrequently, then you don’t need to worry because it naturally does this to get rid of old leaves. But if you see many leaves drop at the same time from different sides of the plant, it is more concerning.

Sometimes, it is shock due to improper care. This can happen in shipping or when the Peperomia Pink Lady is transplanted.

However, other times, it can be caused by overwatering, pest infestation or disease.

An overwatered plant will have wet, soggy soil. That’s the main sign you’re looking for. With pests, do a thorough inspection to spot any. And diseases often present themselves as spots, markings, lesions or abnormalities in the leaves.

 

Pests

So far, I have been fortunate not have had any pests bother my Peperomia Pink Lady. However, this can happen any time.

And the most common pests that try to get the plant’s sap are mealybugs, mites and fungus gnats.

Fortunately, they are easy to get rid of.

I like to wash them off in the sink. Although, you can use neem oil or insecticidal soap as well.

 

Diseases

Root rot is a very serious disease you want to avoid. Although the plant can experience bacterial or fungal infections, root rot can eventually destroy your plant.

All of these are usually caused by too much moisture in one way or another.

With leaf infections, it is getting the foliage wet without ample light or air circulation to help them dry quickly enough.

With root rot, it is overwatering the soil or waterlogged soil.

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