The Variegated string of hearts is not quite hard to find or rare. But, it is also not an easy plant to come across. Hence, it is unlikely that you will get one from the improvement home store or garden local center.
That is why you may have to look online to buy them.
What makes a Variegated string of hearts so rare?
The Variegated string of hearts is also called Ceropegia woodii variegated. They are succulent leaves that have a heart shape. Additionally, they come with white, pink, and green hues around the edges. The pink shade will darken at the leaves back and enhance the plant’s beauty.
They can grow up by four meters, making them perfect for hanging indoor baskets. If you are thinking of growing ahead, then what are you waiting for? They are very resilient and good for beginners.
These plants belong to the Genus Ceropegia. Ceropegia is the native plant in Australia, South Asia, and Africa. The genus was first introduced by Carl Linnaeus in the year 1753.
Among its main features, it consists of a tubular corolla with more than five petals. These petals form a tube by joining at the tips and create a canopy that resembles an umbrella.
The tube structure of its flower refers to the genus name that means ‘wax fountain’. It often grows like creepers. In addition, they consist of some erect growers, such as the woodii plant. They have common names like the necklace vine, wine-glass vine, parachute flower, rosary vine, and lantern flowers.
Variegated String of Hearts comes with various kinds of beautiful features. Hence, many people make use of these plants as ornamentation. Africans love eating the raw roots of some of these plants.
How to care for Variegated String of Hearts?
Below, you will find certain tricks and tips to care for your Variegated string of hearts.
- Right Pot Type and Size
The Variegated string of hearts prefers to grow in very tight spaces between the rocky crags. Therefore, you must go for a pot that is one or two inches larger in comparison to the root ball for mimicking their natural habitat. You can begin with a little pot when the plant is small, and later you can size the pot up with the plant as it will grow older.
A pot that is very large can hold excess water, and it can be a bacterial repository. When they are quite young and working to fill out, the Variegated string of hearts can look sparse. For an attractive and fuller look, plant them together in a pot of the right size.
- Needs of Lightning
Variegated String of Hearts requires indirect and bright sunlight. You can therefore keep it in the direction of the south or east-facing window. If you find the leaves’ edges getting crispy and brown, it is a sign of sunburn. You can bring these right back to normal by moving them six to twelve inches from your window or keep them in a shaded location.
These plants adapt well to dry and arid soils. So, instead of going an ordinary pot mix, make use of a soilless mix of cactus or mix one-third of sand into the potting mix. This will ensure that their root does not end up sitting on the water that can cause death and even harmful diseases. You can go for succulent or cactus soil, and the fine grain sand is a perfect mix for your standard potting soil.
- Room Temperature
The Variegated string of hearts requires a room temperature of sixty-five to seventy-five degrees Fahrenheit. Therefore, it is perfectly suitable for these plants even though they grow well in the summer temperatures of low eighty.
If the surrounding temperature dips down to sixty degrees Fahrenheit, the leaves can suffer from a slight degree of cold damage. In case you live in a climate that has cold winters, make sure that your plant remains in a room that is warm. Moreover, your plant must be away from your chilly windows.
- Watering Schedule
The String of Hearts likes dry conditions over moist conditions. Similar to plants of the succulent type, these are desert natives. They are often victims of root rot due to excessive moisture in the soil. And, it does not recover well in case you overwater it.
The schedule for watering will differ depending on your home conditions. In addition, it will also vary according to seasons. Summer and spring months are for active growth, and at that time, your plant will require frequent watering. You can check the soil with the finger every five to seven days and provide water only when the upper one or two inches feel dry.
Also, you have to keep track of when you are checking the moisture and when your plant remains dry enough for watering. After a few weeks, you may have a solid routine of watering. However, during the winter and fall months, String of Hearts enters a dormant phase where its water needs and growth slows down dramatically. At this time, you need to lower your frequency of watering by half during the following months.
Variegated String of Hearts is far from a heavy feeder. It grows naturally in rocky, harsh areas that are not quite rich in nutrients. You must use fertilizer sparsely, only a half dose strength of plant food once every month during the active growing season. This period ranges from March to August.
The easiest to work with is a liquid formula that gets properly diluted. You can also try a formula that is in a concentrated form. During the dormant winter period, fertilizers can be more harmful than helpful. That is the main reason why you need to wait until the spring season.
It is a desert dweller vine, so it is perfectly suitable for indoor, dry conditions. However, the air from the HVAC is extremely dry. Hence, you must ensure to keep the plant away from vents and make use of an air deflector. Adjustable air deflectors are perfect for different kinds of vent sizes.
- Dormancy per season
There are different growth patterns of Variegated String of Hearts for different seasons. You will notice several changes in the growth of plants at different points of time every year. Variegated String of Hearts remains dormant during winter, especially from October to February. At this time, the plant goes to a resting phase, and growth will significantly slow down.
However, cool temperatures bring the best color out as the plant does not spend a lot of energy on its growth. During this period, you can witness its beautiful pink color, click some photos, and give the plant the rest it requires.
The variegated string of hearts does not need a lot of pruning to grow well and stay healthy. If you have some limited space, you can cut the vines to keep things clean. This will further encourage its vines to fill the leaves out with leaves instead of becoming sparse or leggy
Nevertheless, make sure not to cut more than one-quarter of the length. Otherwise, you put your plant at risk and deprive it of proper foliage for the process of photosynthesis.
In addition, you must remember to use cutting sanitized tools at any point in time to make cuts to your plant. You can wipe the pruner blades or scissors with cotton balls soaked within isopropyl alcohol. Moreover, you can soak the tools in a ten to one bleach solution for about thirty minutes.
In the end, do not throw the pruned sections. As long as your Variegated string of hearts remains six inches long, you can use it for propagation. You can look online to find the steps to propagate a Variegated string of hearts.
Features of Variegated String of Hearts
It can grow up to two to three inches in height, which means around five to seven centimeters. Some people wrap the Variegated string of hearts to give a nest-like look. This will allow the plant to look tall.
The long trailing stem will keep on growing. Gradually, the spread will become huge. They do not divide or split. It is the main reason why the stem starts inching every week.
- Growth speed
If you follow the care guide given above, you will notice rapid growth during the months of fall, summer, and spring. At the time of winter, you will notice a little bit of growth, but it will not be like the other seasonal growths.
Variegated String of Hearts grows very fast, and the plants live in low light. However, the wrong soil type of water can compromise its growth. Similarly, overwatering can be detrimental to the health of the plant.
Variegated String of Hearts is rare. You can find it online. In addition, these plants grow well during the summer months. And they have little growth during the winter months.