Gardening 101: String of Watermelon

String of Watermelon, Senecio herreanus (Curio herreanus)

I couldn’t consider it—one other “string of ______ ” plant? I used to be already accustomed to string of pearls, string of dolphins, string of turtles, string of bananas—however string of watermelons? Properly, apparently this exists, and I found it at my native Sprig backyard retailer the place I’m going to look out distinctive plant varieties. I knew that string of pearls was a low upkeep and straightforward to develop succulent, so I assumed this might be, too. And since I’ve a tough time resisting a singular, versatile plant with a cute frequent identify (simply watch out saying its Latin identify out loud), I purchased one.

Right here’s what I realized about this multitasking trailing succulent:

A pot of String of Watermelon is $40 from the Mellow.
Above: A pot of String of Watermelon is $40 from the Mellow.

Native to South Africa, string of watermelons is a quick rising succulent within the Asteraceae household. It sports activities dangling skinny stems adorned with chubby leaves which have the purplish striations of a striped mini watermelon. Within the spring, tiny white flowers emerge however actually this isn’t why you’re rising this plant. The primary attraction is the notable cascading foliage that may attain greater than 12 inches lengthy.

You’ll be able to plant this succulent exterior in hotter areas void of frosts and freezes, in a container, and even as an unconventional floor cowl. In case you do plant it as a floor cowl, the plant will root on the nodes and fill in reasonably shortly. Professional tip: This plant’s fragile stems make it susceptible to roughhousing. Take warning when planting to keep away from knocking the mini watermelons off, and plant in a spot not frequented by wagging canine tails or tromping toes.

If you’re contemplating planting string of watermelons indoors, ensure to provide your plant enough vibrant mild a few foot from a sunny window. Professional tip: Much less solar creates a greener look and extra solar produces stronger striations. And since it’s a succulent, be sure you use well-draining potting soil and a container with a drain gap to keep away from root rot. Open air, this plant appreciates vibrant mild or filtered mild however positively sheltered from harsh afternoon solar. This plant’s want for shady spots makes it superb for individuals who love succulents however have shady gardens. And positively take into account this plant and it’s trailing cousins your go-to spiller plant.

Cheat Sheet

The more sun it gets, the more color and striation it will have. MySucculentCorner on Etsy sells a 2-inch pot of String of Watermelon for just $8.
Above: The extra solar it will get, the extra colour and striation it would have. MySucculentCorner on Etsy sells a 2-inch pot of String of Watermelon for simply $8.

  • This plant’s straightforward nature makes it an ideal succulent for learners.
  • Use it as an unconventional floor cowl exterior the place the stems will simply root and unfold.
  • Mildly poisonous if ingested, so steer clear of nibbly pets and curious children.
  • The relaxed behavior is ideal planted in containers (both indoors or outdoor) the place the stems can drape over.
  • Excellent plant companions embrace Sansevieria and Sago palm.

Maintain It Alive

A 4-inch pot of String of Watermelon is $20 at Brumley and Bloom.
Above: A 4-inch pot of String of Watermelon is $20 at Brumley and Bloom.
  • Hardy in USDA Zones 9-12.
  • The perfect mild could be very vibrant and oblique.
  • Use cactus/succulent soil combine to make sure quick drainage.
  • Drought tolerant however be sure you fully saturate the soil then let it dry out once more earlier than giving it one other drink of water.
  • Typically this plant prunes itself when its stems by accident break off from extra water or manhandling. You too can trim this plant to take away useless stems or to shorten its size.
  • If planted indoors, look ahead to pesky mealy bugs and aphids.

For extra on succulents, see:

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