Uses: Indoor Plant, Patio Plant, Outdoor Plant (in appropriate tropical climates)
Benefits: Air purifier—removes toxins and VOCs from the air. Non-toxic—safe for areas that children and pets can access. Unique succulent that provides beauty all year. Convenient size. Easy to take care of.
Zones: 10 - 12
Sun: Light Sun to Partial Shade
Life Cycle: Perennial
Mature Height: 12"
Mature Width: 8"
Bloom Season: Intermittent. Spring and summer.
Watermelon Peperomia is known for its thick, waxy foliage that closely resembles watermelon rind.
A member of the pepper family and not the watermelon family, it's a perfect houseplant for someone that wants something that's nontoxic, easy to care for, and that purifies the air of VOCs such as formaldehyde.
We're sure that finding a great spot to keep your Watermelon Peperomia will be easy since it's a smaller plant that doesn't need too much light.
Watermelon Peperomia Care
How to Water a Watermelon Peperomia Plant
We suggest watering an indoor Peperomia argyreia once a week, possibly less in the winter.
It's best to give this plant water when the top half of the soil in its pot is dry.
Avoid overwatering and do not allow this houseplant to rest in standing water. Too much watering will result in the wilting and yellowing of stems and leaves, eventually followed by root rot should the wet conditions persist.
This plant stores water in its leaves and is considered to be drought resistant; however, too little water will initially result in the browning of branches and leaves, eventually followed by death should the dry conditions persist.
What is the Best Humidity for a Watermelon Peperomia?
Peperomia argyreia does best in average to humid conditions.
The typical indoor humidity of a house should likely be fine, but one can supplement humidity with a pebble tray or humidifier if they so desire.
We suggest misting this plant every other day during periods of low humidity.
How Much Sun To Give Watermelon Peperomia
Avoid placing Peperomia argyreia in areas that receive extended periods of direct sunlight.
Too much bright indirect light may also cause negative issues.
Watermelon Peperomias often do best in areas where they receive a slight amount of weak direct light, a slight to moderate amount of bright indirect light, and lots of shade.
These plants may be placed in a very shaded section of a house for months without negative issues, especially over winter months.
What is the Best Temperature for Watermelon Peperomia?
Peperomia argyreia require warmer temperatures and will likely die in extended periods of 50°F weather.
It's best to keep this plant in temperatures above 55°F to ensure its beauty and the integrity of its growth; however the optimal temperature range of this houseplant is between 60°F and 85°F.
As such, Watermelon Peperomia thrives outdoors year round in USDA zones 10-11, and may or may not survive living outdoors over winter in USDA zone 9.
Soil Type for Watermelon Peperomia
Peperomia argyreia prefers nutrient rich, loose, well draining soil with a very mildly acidic to neutral PH.
Our potting soil is an excellent option when the time comes to pot up your Watermelon Peperomia.
How to Fertilize Watermelon Peperomia
Peperomia argyreia should be fertilized on a regular basis between spring and fall, and will likely not require any fertilization over the winter unless it is exposed to enough light and the proper temperatures to encourage its winter growth.
It's considered a light feeder so we suggest using our slow release fertilizer, a balanced liquid fertilizer, or a fish emulsion that has been diluted to 50% strength to decrease the potential of overfertilization/burning.
How to Trim and Maintain a Watermelon Peperomia
Peperomia argyreia is a slow growing plant and won't require too much maintenance or trimming other than the removal of brown and/or dead leaves.
It's best to use a sharp knife or trimming scissors for any pruning requirements.
Ensure that the tool used for plant maintenance is cleaned prior to use to minimize the spread of illness or disease.
Watermelon Peperomia can be pruned in various ways to encourage different growth patterns.
If a bushy and leafy plant is desired, it's suggested to trim the flowers as soon as they emerge.
Lower leaves can be pruned to encourage taller growth.
We suggest fertilizing after any extensive pruning of live plant material.
It's best to prune during spring and early summer to allow time for regrowth prior to winter.
How to Repot a Watermelon Peperomia
Peperomia argyreia are slow growing and don't have extensive root systems, so they won't require repotting too often. As a matter of fact, they often thrive in pots that appear too small for them.
The best method for determining if your Peperomia requires repotting is to check and see if roots are coming out of the drain hole at the bottom of its pot—it's typically time to pot up if you see them poking through.
How to Propagate Watermelon Peperomia
The propagation of Peperomia argyreia is easily accomplished by placing a cutting in a glass of water or a pot of moist/wet soil, possibly with a slight amount of liquid fertilizer and/or rooting hormone (although neither are necessary).
Change water as required to maintain its cleanliness.
It's best to provide propagation cuttings with ample light, but to keep them out of strong, direct sun.
You'll want the cutting to be of one leaf with approx. 1"-2" of stem.
Roots should begin to emerge from the cutting after 2-3 weeks, at which point the plant should be placed in soil that is kept slightly moist until the plant becomes established.
Leaving the cutting in water/wet soil for too long after the establishment of roots will cause rotting and death.
What Size of Watermelon Peperomia Do You Ship?
We ship our Peperomia argyreia in 4" Grow Pots. They will be appropriately sized for their pots.
How Large Do Watermelon Peperomias Grow?
The size of Peperomia argyreia when fully grown usually does not exceed 12" of height and 9" of width, making them great live indoor plants for a variety of locations.
Common Names of Peperomia argyreia
General Description of Watermelon Peperomia
Peperomia argyreia is a tropical evergreen herbaceous shrub that grows up to 12" tall.
This flowering plant is known to thrive outdoors year round in USDA zones 10-11, and it's often valued as a houseplant in other areas throughout the world.
Watermelon Peperomia gets its name from the fact that its leaves resemble the outside of a watermelon in appearance and its stems are red. They are valued as indoor plants because they look great when standing alone on desks or tables, and also add an interesting burst of colors when grouped in pots with other plants—especially if they're showing off their small white flowers, which are somewhat stake-like and typically show during the summer months. They're easy to care for and rarely need repotting as they seem to thrive when rootbound. They do best when placed in areas of lower light, and should only receive a maximum of 2-4 hours of direct sunlight a day.
Watermelon Peperomia make great indoor plants because of their beauty and the fact that they purify the air better than many other houseplants. The Watermelon Plant is especially great at pulling formaldehyde from the air, which is a common toxin in many homes.
History of Watermelon Peperomia
Peperomia argyreia is a species of the family Piperaceae, native to northern South America, including Bolivia, Brazil, Ecuador, and Venezuela. Despite many of its common names, the plant is not closely related to either watermelons or begonias. It is; however, in the same family as peppers.
Like many other popular houseplants, the Watermelon Peperomia's widespread fame is a result of its use as an ornamental due to its beautiful foliage, ease of care, lack of toxicity, and efficiency as an air purifier.
Toxicity and Risks of Watermelon Peperomia
Watermelon Peperomia is non-toxic to both people and pets. Since it's an air purifying plant, it actually lowers the risk of toxicity within a space.