A kind of shape-shifter plant, String of Hearts is mainly a vine. Also, it can be wholeheartedly included in a collection of plants for indoors. Indeed, such plants like Arrowhead add a hint of charm to where it has been. Not only does it grow in a pot, but it can also cover stone walkways in a garden and decorates a wall of gardens. This houseplant has other names such as chain of hearts, Collar of hearts, rosary vine, hearts-on-a-string, sweetheart vine, Chinese lantern, String of spades, Variegated String of hearts, Regular string of hearts, silver glory string of hearts. The main reason why it has many names is that it has plenty of cultivars. Plus, its scientific name is Ceropegia Woodii. Rooted in Africa, String of Hearts inhabits countries like South Africa, Zimbabwe, Eswatini.
1) General Information for String of Hearts Plant
The string of Hearts generally has plenty of creeping stems bearing green-colored heart-shaped leaves, some of which are variegated. Also, its violet flower, with purple corolla blooms in spring. Besides, this houseplant is bendable and easy to give a shape. That’s why it is a manageable vine. Thanks to this aspect, it may be subject to topiary projects. Just like most of the plants published on this website, it is a perennial plant. In terms of max growth, this houseplant’s length could reach up to 3 – 9 ft (1 – 3 m) indoors and 12 ft (3,6 m) in nature. Importantly, String of Hearts is one of the toxic plants for pets.
2) How to Care for String of Hearts (Ceropegia woodii) Plant
Sunlight: String of Hearts likes direct sunlight and bright lighting. For that reason, semi-shade locations would be more appropriate for this houseplant.
Watering: In its growing season, this flowering plant needs thorough watering. If the topsoil is dry, it means it should be watered. In winter, reduce not just the amount of water but also other inputs that are essential for this plant. Because it goes dormant in these times.
Humidity: 50% humidity in the room would suffice for it.
Temperature: The optimal temperature range for this plant should be between 80°F – 85°F (26°C – 29,5°C). But the temperature value mustn’t drop below 60°F (15,5°C). Usually, such plants take heavy damage from frost rather than extreme heat. According to the USDA plant hardiness map, it grows better zones in 9 – 12.
Soil Type: This houseplant isn’t picky for a specific soil type. But the potting soil should be well-drained. Moreover, it should have high porosity for better drainage. For that reason, you can increase its porousness with pumice and perlite.
Fertilizer: For such plants, you should prefer water-soluble fertilizers. In its growing season, applying it monthly would be enough. Briefly, having watered the plant, administer it. In winter, don’t apply.
Propagation: Cutting stems and starting from seeds are two well-known propagation ways. Starting from seed means the very beginning and takes much time. On the other hand, cutting stems are much more pratic. To complete it, either try soil or water propagation. Alternatively, cut the plum-like tuber on the roots and put it in the potting soil.
Repotting: For better repotting, transfer your plant to its new pot in its growing season. However, the next pot should be 2 inches (5 cm) larger than the current pot. This way, its roots can develop more comfortably. As a suggestion, hanging basket planters are more suitable for this flowering plant.
3) Keep in Mind: Common Problems!
Root rot: This is maybe the most common problem that newbies would face. Due to overwatering, the roots stop conveying the necessary inputs upper parts of the plant. In the end, the excess water drowns the plant.
Brown leaf tips and edges: Direct and intense sunlight leads to such problems. Particularly, If exposed to too long hours of direct sunlight, String of Hearts’ leaf tips and edges turn brown. All plant burns eventually.
Pest infestation: Whiteflies, aphids, mites, scales, and so forth destroy the plant. Dry and poor conditions cause this situation in general.
Suggestions for problems: To prevent root rot, you should stick to the plant’s watering routine. Most importantly, avoid overwatering. To keep leaves green, you should arrange a good position for this plant. For example, south-facing and west-facing windowsills could be. To get rid of pests, you could use alcohol-based wipes, pesticides, and herbal oils.