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Peperomia Incana: Must-Know Care Tips

Peperomia Incana: Must-Know Care Tips

The Peperomia incana plant has unique several nicknames that make it stand out. The most common nicknames include the “Felted Peperomia” and “Amazon Fuzz”.

This plant needs moist sandy loam soil to thrive. This type of soil will ensure you won’t over-water or under-water the plant. It also needs direct sunlight for the fullest leaves.

The heart-shaped leaves are covered in white fuzzy hairs. This is where the unique nicknames come from. These white hairs protect them from sun damage.

These hairs also give the plant that felt appearance and texture it’s famous for.

This is a slow-growing plant. Don’t expect it to start growing right away. It can take years for this Peperomia to mature.

The Peperomia incana plant doesn’t have to be difficult or confusing to care for. With the right knowledge, you’ll have a beautiful indoor plant you can be proud of.

This guide will walk you through everything you need to know when it comes to this plant’s care.

You’ll learn how often it needs watered and even what issues you might come across.

 

How Not To Kill Your Peperomia Incana

 

Peperomia Incana Basic Care Instructions

 

Soil

Peperomia incana plants need sandy loam soil for the perfect balance of moisture. Sandy loam a type of well-draining soil.

Sandy loam soil contains sand, clay, and silt.

According to the University of Oregon, to be sandy loam soil it has to have equal parts of these three ingredients.

The sand in the soil mix allows excess water to drain, instead of the soil holding onto all that unneeded water.

Make sure the sandy loam soil you use has large pieces of sand. The smaller and finer sand pieces won’t let water drain as well.

The sand prevents over-watering. Over-watering is the number one cause for an unhealthy or even dying plant. It’s easy for even the pros to do.

The clay does the opposite of the sand. It holds onto moisture from water. It also holds all the nutrients your plant needs. Sand and silt aren’t able to do this.

This is the material that lets the Peperomia receive hydration to thrive.

The pH level of the soil should range between 5 pH and 7.5 pH. This is a neutral pH range.

Sand tends to be on the more acidic side. The other ingredients in the soil help to balance that out.

But to be on the safe side, you should test the pH of the soil on a regular basis.

 

Light

One of the great things about the Peperomia incana is that it can survive in both direct sunlight and shade.

But if you keep it in a shady area, it’s not going to flower as well. Nor will it have that thriving appearance. But it will live.

If you want a Peperomia plant that’s more than surviving, bright direct sunlight is your best bet.

And you don’t have to worry about the sun scorching the leaves. Those white hairs that give it a felt-like appearance protect it from this exact type of damage.

It’s easy to get your Peperomia incana plant direct sunlight. All you have to do is place it in either a south or west-facing window.

When you use artificial lights, you can set the plant right underneath. The more light, the better.

 

Watering

The Peperomia incana plant needs moist soil. But stay away from saturated soil. By moist, we mean the soil needs to be thoroughly wet but not soaked.

This is one plant that’s super easy to over-water. When you saturate the soil, oxygen can’t get through to the roots.

And your Peperomia plant needs oxygen as much as it needs hydration and all those nutrients.

Lack of oxygen leads to several issues. Leaves become discolored and even die off.

It can also lead to root rot (also known as wet feet). The roots start to rot away. If you catch it right away, you can trim the bad roots from the plant.

But if you don’t catch the root rot right away, all the roots will rot.

This leads to the death of your plant, even if you change the soil. Rotten roots can’t absorb moisture or nutrients for the rest of the plant.

The lack of oxygen and extra moisture allows fungi to grow on the plant as well.

This is why it’s so important to check the soil before you water your Peperomia incana.

Stick your finger into the soil about five inches deep. Wait to water the soil until it’s dry the entire five inches.

 

Temperature

Your Peperomia incana plant should be in temperatures ranging from 45F (7C) to 90F (32C). The higher the temperature, the better for the plant.

Don’t let the temperature drop below 45F (7C). And never let frost form on the leaves. It hates cold temperatures.

 

Humidity

One thing that makes the Peperomia incana easy to care for is that it doesn’t need high humidity.

As long as your plant is getting direct sunlight, humidity isn’t even a factor.

But if your plant doesn’t have access to direct sunlight, you’ll need moderate humidity.

Living in a dry area can make this process seem difficult. but it’s easy to create humidity in a home.

The most common method is the pebble tray method. You start by filling a try to the top with pebbles.

Once the pebbles are ready, fill the tray with the water. The water shouldn’t cover the pebbles.

Set your Peperomia incana plant on top of the tray. As the water evaporates, your plant will receive the moisture it creates.

You can also spritz the leaves now and then. Like with the pebble method, the water on the leaves evaporates for moisture.

 

Fertilizer

To fertilize a Peperomia incana plant, you need water-soluble fertilizer.

It should be a quick-release fertilizer so the soil gets the nutrients right away. Which means the plant gets the nutrients right away.

But the quick-release fertilizer means you have to fertilize your plant more often. You need to fertilize once a week during the growing season.

Don’t worry about fertilizing the plant during the cold season.

 

Propagation

One of the most common ways to propagate the Peperomia incana is by using leaf cuttings.

The other way to propagate involves stem cuttings and water. We’ll walk you through both processes below.

 

Growth

The Peperomia incana plant doesn’t get as big as other indoor tropical plants. It grows to be between six inches and a foot in height.

The width of this plant ranges from a foot to three feet.

 

Potting

Re-potting a Peperomia incana plant is simple. You re-pot it like you do most indoor plants.

You’ll know when it needs a bigger plant pot. The roots will start to grow through the drainage holes.

It’s super important to re-pot as soon as this starts. But this is the only time you should re-pot this plant.

When the plant becomes root bound, it becomes stressed out. And stressed out plants are more susceptible to diseases.

When you go to re-pot this Peperomia plant, only transfer it to a plant pot that’s a bit bigger than the original.

Not only does it not like becoming root bound but this plant also stresses if there’s too much room for the roots.


 

Peperomia Incana Propagation Steps

The most popular way to propagate the Peperomia incana plant is through leaf cuttings.

You can also use the stem cutting method but instead of soil, you use water.

Both methods vary from the standard methods. But both methods are also fun.

 

Using Leaf Cuttings

  1. For this process to work, you need a standard Peperomia incana leaf cutting. The leaf cutting should be healthy. You have to cut down to where the leaf stalk connects to the stem. You need the leaf stalk a decent length to plant it. You’ll need sterilized pruning shears to do this. You can sterilize your pruning shears with isopropyl alcohol. Get a few leaf cuttings so you have a higher chance of creating a new Peperomia plant.
  2. You have to dip the leaf stalks in rooting hormone. This will increase your chances of propagating a new plant.
  3. Use a straw to make holes for your leaf cuttings in the soil. None of these holes should be in the center of the soil. A pencil will also work for this task.
  4. Now you plant the Peperomia incana leaf cuttings. The leaves need to face the opposite direction of the center of the soil. Pack the soil around the leaf stalks so it stays upright.
  5. If you’re having an issue keeping the leaf cuttings upright, use a straw. Tie the stalks to the straw until they can stand on their own.
  6. Don’t set the leaf cuttings in direct light yet. While it’s new, it needs indirect bright light. Instead, place them in an east or north-facing window.
  7. Now you can care for the plant as you do the original plant. Make sure the soil is always moist. Don’t forget to fertilize once new leaves have started to sprout from the cuttings.

 

Using Stem Cuttings

  1. First, you want to get the perfect stem cutting. This stem cutting should be three to four inches in length. You should also cut right beneath a leaf node. It’s a giant boost to have two leaves still attached but they’ll need to be towards the top of the stem cutting. Before you cut, sterilize your pruning shears with isopropyl alcohol.
  2. Once you have a stem cutting, you want to cure it. This means it sits out in a warm environment for about a week. This allows the end to callous over, which promotes rooting.
  3. When the week is up, it’s time to place the stem cutting into a pitcher of water. It helps to have had the water you’re going to use in a bowl sitting out for 24 hours. This allows any chlorine in it to dissipate.
  4. Place the stem cuttings into the pitcher. Fill the pitcher with water. Avoid getting the entire stem cutting wet. This blocks oxygen from penetrating it. The leaves need to be above water so they don’t get water damage. You need to submerge the leaf nodes in the water.
  5. You have to change the water every few days. Otherwise, bacteria will form and make your stem cutting sick. It takes about four weeks for it to start taking root.
  6. You can get your plant pot ready while the roots are growing. Fill the plant pot with sandy loam soil. The plant pot should have drainage holes at the bottom to let excess water flow through.
  7. Once the roots are at least three inches in length, it’s safe to move your new Peperomia incana plant to a plant pot. Be very careful during this process, the roots are fragile. You should submerge all the roots in the soil so they can stretch out as they grow.
  8. Now you’ll care for your new plant like you do the old one. Make sure it’s getting enough water and that it’s getting direct sunlight.

 

Varieties of Peperomias

Peperomia incana plants are all different. There are species covered in fuzz and there are species that resemble succulents.

No matter what type of plant you like, Peperomia has something for you. Here are a few of our favorites.

 

Peperomia argyreia

The Peperomia argyreia plant often goes by the “Watermelon Peperomia”. It has pretty oval leaves with beautiful silver lines. These designs resemble the patterns on a watermelon.

 

Peperomia caperata

This Peperomia plant has leaves like the Peperomia argyreia plant. They have a watermelon design. But these leaves are much smaller and the plant produces tons of them.

 

Peperomia graveolens

This plant is also known as the “Ruby Glow”. It produces funky shaped leaves you won’t see in almost any other plant.

 

Peperomia pellucida

The Peperomia pellucida plant is a common species both indoors and outdoors. It doesn’t root very deep whatsoever.

 

Common Problems with the Peperomia Incana

From time to time, you might find yourself battling pests with your Peperomia incana.

They don’t attract plant pests but they don’t repel plant pests either. If they come into contact with a pest, you’re going to have to fight off an infestation.

For this Peperomia plant, the most common plant pest is the creepy mealybug.

 

Mealybugs

You know you have a mealybug infestation when you see cotton all over your plant.

Mealybugs are soft-bodied plant pests. So, they’re covered in a cotton-like substance. This substance works as a protection from outside factors.

They like to hide under leaves and suck the sap from your plant. The sap contains two special types of cells.

One cell carries hydration throughout the entire plant. The other cell carries all those nutrients the roots absorb throughout the rest of the plant.

The more sap mealybugs steal, the more they’re stealing from your Peperomia incana.

This can lead to all kinds of issues, including loss of leaves and even death.

 

Aphids

You also need to be on the lookout for aphids. Aphids are teeny tiny plant pests. They can be very difficult to see with the naked eye.

They multiple fast. If you don’t catch an infestation right away, you’re in for a hard battle against these creatures.

Aphids also steal sap by penetrating your plant. They have tube mouths that suck the sap up.

Neem oil is your best choice to rid your Peperomia plant of plant pests. It’s all-natural and it’s been known to harm very few plants.

You only have to dilute the neem oil in a spray bottle with water. Shake the mix up and spray down your plant.

Since neem oil is heavy, it covers up the plant pest’s breathing holes. When it can’t breathe, it suffocates.

It takes only minutes to kill off the plant pests the neem oil came in contact with. All you have to do now is wipe your plant down with gentle soap and water. It’ll remove all those dead pests.

 

Tips for an Unhappy Peperomia Incana

Every indoor plant has it’s complications. Some are prone to fungi while others are prone to dehydration.

The Peperomia incana plant is no exception. Like other plants, it has weaknesses.

It helps to always be on the lookout for a struggling plant. These are the most common issues you’ll face with this Peperomia plant.

 

Your Peperomia Incana Plant is Losing Leaves

When losing leaves is the only symptom, the temperature is too low. Peperomia incana plants don’t like cold temperatures. Never let it drop below 45F (7C).

If your plant sits next to a window, you may want to move it. Don’t be afraid to turn up the temperature, it likes hot weather.

Keep a thermometer in the same room as the plant so you can track how hot or cold it’s getting.

But if your plant starts showing other symptoms, there may be bigger problems.

 

Your Peperomia Incana Plant has Raised Bumps Under the Leaves

If your Peperomia incana has raised bumps under the leaves, your plant has Cercospora Leaf Spot.

Cercospora Leaf Spot causes bumps that are yellow or brown. They have a yellow ring surrounding them.

Some of these bumps might even ooze a weird sticky goo.

Cercospora can be caused by many things, from over-watering to poor air circulation.

First, you have to remove the damaged leaves. This Leaf Spot can spread quickly if you don’t.

Once you remove all the contaminated leaves, you have to figure out what caused the disease. And you have to fix that issue right away.

Cercospora Leaf Spot is no joke. It can kill your plant if left untreated.

 

Your Peperomia Incana Plant has a Brown Spot at the End of the Stem

A brown spot at the end of a stem is not a good sign. This means your Peperomia incana plant has Sclerotium stem rot.

This disease is as it sounds. It’s the rotting of your plant’s stem. When it’s left for a while, you’ll notice small fruits growing around the base.

Stem rot is one of the many issues that comes with over-watering a plant. Instead of the roots rotting away, your stem starts to rot away.

All that excess moisture is drowning the Peperomia incana plant.

If the stem rot hasn’t advanced too far, you only need to switch pots. You also need to switch to fresh, drier soil.

But if the stem rot has spread too far, your plant won’t be savable.

 

Peperomia Incana Plant Care FAQ

 

Are Peperomia incana plants toxic?

Peperomia incana plants aren’t toxic to either humans or pets. That being said, we don’t suggest eating them.

 

Why are only the bottom leaves of my Peperomia incana turning yellow?

When only the bottom leaves of your Peperomia incana are yellow, it’s under-fertilized. It’s not getting enough nitrogen or potassium.

 

Conclusion

The Peperomia incana plant is a favorite to feel. Whenever you’re feeling stressed, don’t be afraid to feel those fuzzy little hairs.

You’re going to love caring for this Peperomia plant. And it won’t leave you with a headache.

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