Do you have children in your life, or perhaps adults who would not mind feeling like kids again? Chances are, these loved ones are embarking on something new and important. After all, now is the time for back-to-school, back-to-the-office… and it is certainly back-to-neighborliness. Now might be the time to mark one of these milestones with an exquisite little gift that brings a smile. |
Exquisite… little… smile-eliciting: Peperomias are all these things. These miniature plants with leaf shapes and colors that spread joy have become the recent focus of my gift-giving. And on the receiving end—oh, the smiles.
String of Turtles Peperomias, with dangling succulent-type leaves resembling countless tiny turtles with only their shells showing, are indoor miniature plants that look challenging to grow but are just the opposite. Their ease of care makes these miniature plants well suited for newbies and veteran gardeners alike. And their charming leaf shape makes them amusing to all, both young in age and young at heart.
One of the best gifts is letting children join in on the transplanting of this Peperomia. After they have marveled at the tiny “turtle shells” before them, they will learn to loosen these miniature plants carefully from their grow-pots containing regular soil (no special growing medium required), and nestle them into a new home of their choosing. The container might be an unbreakable bowl permitting drainage, a hanging vessel—whatever it is, the container must be suited for placement where these miniature plants can access indirect sunlight. And Peperomias love neighbors, so each container should leave room for another String of Turtles or similar charmer.
Even if your gift recipients cannot join you for the planting, they can handle the care. The watering schedule for these miniature plants is perfectly aligned with what a child or busy adult can manage: watering just about weekly, after the top layer of soil has dried out. Teaching children to care for something in this manner—suggesting a schedule on which they check the moisture in the top inches of the soil bed—is valuable. Adult helpers in this caregiving should know that the only real nemesis of a Peperomia is over-watering. Holding back on watering is better than overdoing it for these easy-care miniature plants.
There are Peperomias that add color to a gift. My eyes widen when I spy red foliage on houseplants. Some Peperomias have red leaves. And when I say red, I mean designer red—rich, velvety tones that add flair to any indoor space. Peperomia caperata Schumi Red uses unexpected color rather than turtle-shell charm to take center-stage among other miniature plants. Plant expert Leslie Halleck got me interested in this beauty and other Peperomias through the video clip included here. Then there is Peperomia caperata Rosso. It has red undersides and a clumping habit, plus spiked flowers that remind me of feathers decorating an over-the-top ladies’ hat. This variety can handle more shade, and like the others, is low-maintenance despite its high-end appearance. Both are ideal accompaniments to String of Turtles in a decorative container of miniature plants.
I love these varieties that include red, but for whimsy that will please the child in all of us, my favorite accompaniment to String of Turtles is Watermelon Peperomia. The foliage on these miniature plants looks like… well, you know, whole watermelons. And with this and other Peperomias, I am forced to ask, “Where have you been all my life, you fun miniature plants?”
Rather than let my loved ones ask the same question, I am gifting these miniature plants so that Peperomias will, indeed, be known. I hope you will enjoy doing the same.
Miniature Gardening' offers miniature plants, accessories, fairies, garden tools & dollhouse furniture to create enchanting miniature landscapes for containers or your yard. Story telling and imaginary fairy garden from 'Miniature Gardening' bring the playful kid out in all of us. Filled with intrigue and mystique each little miniature garden scene you create is a snapshot of such a dream.
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