Peperomia argyreia (Watermelon Peperomia)

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Scientific Name

Peperomia argyreia (Hook.f.) E.Morren

Common Names

Watermelon Peperomia, Watermelon Begonia

Synonyms

Peperomia argyraea, Peperomia arifolia var. argyreia, Peperomia sandersii

Scientific Classification

Family: Piperaceae
Subfamily: Piperoideae
Genus: Peperomia

Flower

Color: Green
Bloom Time: Summer

Description

Peperomia argyreia is a compact, nearly stemless, rosette-forming perennial. It typically grows up to 8 inches (20 cm) tall as a houseplant. Each round, glossy, fleshy leaf is up to 3.6 inches (9 cm) long and attractively striped with green and silver in a manner reminiscent of watermelon rind. Leaf stems are an attractive red. Small greenish flowers on spikes up to 3 inches (7.5 cm) long, rise slightly above the foliage in summer on red stalks. Flowers are interesting but not particularly showy.

Photo via plantica.cz

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zone 10a to 12b: from 30 °F (−1.1 °C) to 60 °F (15.6 °C).

How to Grow and Care

This plant is well suited for planting in containers or hanging baskets. Drainage is critical, so make sure the container has a drainage hole in the bottom. Peperomia grows in any good-quality, regular commercial potting soil or a homemade mixture containing ingredients such as compost, loam or peat moss. A handful of sand or vermiculite promotes drainage.

Watermelon Peperomia thrives in bright, indirect sunlight. Although most types of Peperomia thrive in bright light, too much light fades the bright colors of the variegated foliage. Indoors, a window with an eastern exposure provides excellent light. Outdoors, grow the plant in light shade or filtered light.

Water the plant deeply when the top of the soil feels slightly dry. Let the pot drain completely and never allow the plant to stand in water. Check outdoor plants daily during warm weather. In fall and winter, water sparingly and allow more time between each watering so the soil has time to dry a bit more than usual. If the air is dry in summer, increase humidity by setting the container on a humidity tray… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for a Watermelon Peperomia

Origin

It is native to South America.

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