Today's Gardener (todaysgardener.com) participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program.
Ever since I’ve first seen this cutie pie in the office next to mine, I fell in love with it.
So miniature and yet so effective for small spaces as was the apartment I was renting at the time.
Eventually, I found out its esteemed name – peperomia – and decided to purchase it.
And, the biggest “problem” of all – they all look alike!
Which is perfectly understandable, seeing how they come from the same family.
Now, since our Hope has so many relatives and is easily confused with one of them (polybotrya, graveolens, albovittata, tetraphylla, watermelon – you name it!), I will make sure that after reading this Peperomia Hope care guide you no longer have doubts that Hope is the right peperomia for you.
Yeah, all the best care tips included too!
Peperomia Hope – General Facts
I know you want me to go straight to the care facts; I get that.
But, so you could fully grasp the tips I am giving you, I first need to introduce you to our lovely Hope.
Ok, I already said how PH has a large family. Moreover, our little Hope represents a cross hybrid between Peperonia deppeana and its cousin Peperomia quadrifola (I also had no idea what they are when I first got my Hope as a present).
When you take a look at its leaves, you can’t but notice the striking similarity in the arrangements of its leaves compared to the leaves of P. Tetraphylla.
On the other hand, the little veins (extended, oblong, and light) in the leaves awfully resemble those you can find in Watermelon Peperomia.
And, finally, the shape of its leaves will most likely remind you of Peperomia Quadrangularis.
Don’t get me wrong, they are all nice.
But, let’s focus here on our beautiful hope.
Everything I’ve said previously automatically leads to a conclusion that Peperomia Hope a vining epiphyte with characteristically small and round green leaves holding onto rather thin stems.
Be careful here with the stems cause they are easily broken. Every harder squeeze or pinch might cause damage.
Now, since Peperomia hope is a vining plant, you could use some props (ladder) set in the pot to make your Hope go up.
And, the last fact I’d like to introduce you to is related to the origin of Hope. South and Central America.
I think this already tells you a lot.
But, just in case, let me be explicit – lots of moisture and humidity, indirect light, and the temperature never below 64°F (18°C) are the ideal conditions to grow your Hope at home.
Enough with the random talk, let’s go to the actual…
All I need is the air that I breathe and to grow…
So, yeah – in the soil you choose for your Peperomia Hope, aeration is key.
As an epiphyte, PH will require as much oxygen as you can give it. Especially the roots. If you want them healthy and able to feed the plant properly they have to have enough oxygen.
Now, you can go for commercial mixes as your soil option, but still, I’d like to suggest that you modify it a little bit.
Namely, the soil you choose has to have a great balance between draining properties and water-retaining properties.
Now is the time for you to say – will you make up your mind already!?
I know, I know!
But, trust me; you can’t go for soil that dries too fast, and also not for the one that keeps too much water for too long either.
For the best aeration, use grit. Just a little, though. Here you can opt for materials such as river sand rich with minerals (provided that you can find it), perlite (why, naturally), and coco chips, for example.
These will be your perfect ally in providing the optimum aeration for your Hope roots.
On the other hand, the fleshy leaves of your Peperomia Hope will require uniform moisture without too much deviation.
So if you don’t want your soil to dry too much (believe me, you really don’t!), you can add some organic moisture retaining components to the soil. I prefer sterile compost, but those of you who have the option, go for animal manure.
Try to avoid chicken one, cause it’s too strong and far more unpleasant (smell-wise) than the cow one.
In addition, coco peat and peat moss are also good options.
All of these will help you in achieving the optimum soil pH value that is pH 6 to some pH 6.6.
As a final hint, you can just mix perlite and peat 50/50 and there you have it!
The ideal potting mix for your Peperomia Hope is right here.
Peperomia Hope Light Requirements
Imitate the forest is all I should say here!
Or, run as fast as you can from the direct sun exposure.
Not you, your Peperomia Hope, dummy!
Some might say PH requires low light, but, I daresay this is only partially true.
It is a fact that direct exposure is a no-go, but you can’t keep it in the dark place either.
Instead, try giving it plenty of sun, but filtered, shaded, so to say.
You can try with all sorts of props, but, as someone who is not a fan of making ridiculous alterations to my living space just for a plant, let me suggest this.
An east-facing window.
This provides some direct exposure early in the morning when the sun is not strong yet and it passes on to the other side just in time to not do harm to your Hope in any way.
Now, I know our east-facing windows are already packed with jade plants, gerberas, sansevierias, and African violets so you might not find space for your Hope too.
If this is the case, then here’s an alternative.
A south-facing window is an ideal replacement if your eastern ones are all occupied.
In such a spot, Hope will have plenty of sun, no direct exposure, and optimum conditions to survive the winter too.
During winter, the south-facing window is a far better option than the east-facing one.
In any case, note that the leaves of the Peperomia hope can turn faded and dull if kept in low-light spaces for too long.
So, definitely, give it plenty of filtered indirect sunlight and everything will turn out just fine.
Unless you mess up with…
Don’t worry, you won’t!
But I had to scare you a little.
Let me explain why.
The main reason why your plants die is that you’re either over-watering them or not giving them enough water, on the other hand.
To know when is the right time to water, you need to observe your beauty closely.
Let’s say you got the soil requirements right (check above).
In this case, you can always judge whether it’s time to water by checking the top 2 inches of the soil.
Just shove your finger inside. If moist, leave your Hope be. If crumbly and obviously dry to the touch, it’s time to water.
By the way, instead of dipping your finger, use a toothpick.
As simple as that.
What I noticed from my Peperomia Hope is that during summer it will have to be watered every three to four days.
However, in the wintertime, it can go even up to ten to fifteen days without water.
The prerogative here, though, is that once you water, the water should run through the pot in a few seconds.
If too much of it remains in the tray pour it out.
Remember, Hope roots like to be aerated not water-logged and soggy.
This might lead to root rot and eventually to the death of your Hope.
And, we don’t want that. Hope should never die!
Temperature and Humidity for Peperomia Hope Care
Ok, one by one! Let’ start with temperature requirements.
Remember how I mentioned Central and South America?
Any ideas then what ideal humidity and temperature are?
Yeah, zero frost tolerance – you got that right!
Here’s the thing.
You might think Hope should like high temperatures, but actually…
We are talking about a plant that won’t stand frost and is not very keen on high temps either.
Providing moderate temperature conditions is the best thing you can do for your Esperanza :-D!
The ideal temperature range to grow Peperomia Hope is anywhere between 65° and 75°F (18° – 24°C). This is what we call “normal” room temperature, more or less.
Due to this, Peperomia Hope is not an ideal indoor plant choice for those regions with cold winters. The fleshy leaves would wither and die right away at low temps.
Even when you keep it indoors, it would spend the winter stagnant, without progress and it would take much time to recover when the warm days start.
But, in any case, knock yourselves out!
Still, whatever you do, make sure that the temp doesn’t go below 55°F (13°C).
Consider yourself warned!
Next, temperature fluctuations are not desirable either.
Keep it as far away as possible from heaters and air-condition. The draft created from the air conditioner is not good and it can cause damage.
Finally, don’t be that an optimist to think that 30°C can’t do much harm to Peperomia Hope.
Or, you really like its leaves to have boiled looks just before they droop due to the heat and become stressed unnecessarily?
The only instance when this is justified is if you live in a place like that.
Water, then! What else can I tell you?
Water every single day (and, of course, take precautions not to overdo it)!
TBH, I don’t pay much attention to the humidity as long as I take care to provide the right soil and the right amount of water.
This is how you control the humidity without even thinking about it.
In any case, PH can take a whole array of humidity conditions.
But, contrary to what you thought, it coming from the rainforest and all, high humidity is not its thing.
Drier air is better with optimum watering. If we talk numbers, then 40-50% humidity is just fine.
If space, where you keep your PH, is known for higher humidity, then try not to keep the leaves wet for a longer period and, most of all, make sure to provide the right air circulation.
When I say air, I mean real air, not simulation by turning on the air condition to mimic the airflow.
Fertilizing Peperomia Hope
First of all, let me tell you I ain’t no fan of fertilizers.
At least, I’m not when it comes to houseplants.
I’ve been growing plants for ages on my own and, just as an example, my gerbera flowers every year without a miss with zero fertilizer added.
Again, these are my preferences.
Sometimes, though, it’s natural to want to boost the growth of your plants, Peperomia Hope included.
In such a situation, the first thing you’d do is go for chemical fertilizers.
This is not a great option for epiphytes. Instead, try something else.
And, here’s what (for those who haven’t guessed it already).
PH is a hybrid and will love the addition of the fertilizer, especially if it comes in a form such as this.
Besides providing additional nutrients to PH, it will also help in retaining soil moisture.
It’s a win-win combination!
Still, if you’d skip manure, then you can try liquid fertilizer (a well-balanced one, something like 10-10-10). You can add it not more than once a month. This will be just enough.
Or, to stay on the safe side, check the instructions on the package.
If you wonder when to fertilize your Peperomia Hope – no philosophy here – do what you do with almost all of your other plants.
Fertilize during the growth season, i.e. summer.
There’s no need to fertilize the plant since this might burn the plant.
Repotting and Pruning
Do you know how we overgrow our clothes in time?
The same goes for the plants and their pots.
Before you know it, there comes the time when you have to move your plant to a larger container since the current one is too small.
You might think this is not so important, but hear this!
I almost killed my Alocasia because I kept it in a too-small pot for too long.
The stems had nowhere to go and there was no new soil to take nutrition from.
So, yeah, this can happen to your Peperomia Hope too if you don’t repot it when the time has come.
But, when is the time to repot?
It’s not an exact science, of course; but, just to stay on the safe side, you can repot it every spring, just to freshen up the soil.
I won’t tell you which and how to choose a pot – you’ve already figured it out on your own.
As long as it’s bigger with fresh soil added, everything is fine.
On the other hand, plant observation is another step that will help you decide when it’s time to repot.
When you notice that the PH is no longer thriving, and the soil is right, watering is right, light is right – the only thing that’s left is to repot.
When you do that and split the roots, don’t throw the extra one away.
It will be great for…
Peperomia Hope Propagation
Because it’s funny how we always want more.
So, one Peperomia Hope is never enough. We must have two, three…five…fourteen…
With most of the plants, you can try various propagation methods. If you are lucky, all of them will work.
Sometimes, skill has nothing to do with this.
So, if you’d ask me what would be the best way to propagate Peperomia Hope, I’d say I have no idea.
I know a few of them and I’ve tried each and they all worked.
On the other hand, a friend of mine tried to propagate it using leaves, but she failed.
However, you can try any of these and let us know if it turned out fine.
1. Propagation from Stem Cuttings
The easiest one!
Honestly, you don’t even have to have a green thumb to propagate PH like this.
To begin with, all you have to do is to identify a mature and healthy branch that has flowered before.
Choose a stem that looks appealing and make a cut some 3 to 4 inches from the tip of the stem. Make sure that the stem has enough leaves so your new plant is already formed.
The next step is to place to cutting in water and wait for it to develop roots. Another option is to keep it in moist soil that is a well-balanced mixture of perlite and peat.
So, whether it’s water or soil propagation that you choose, place the cutting in a place with partial shade and take care that water/soil is always at room temperature.
In this way, in some 4 to 8 weeks you will notice your cutting has developed roots.
2. Propagation with a Layer of Soil
Did you know that vines can develop roots when they come in contact with soil?
Twist a vine back into the soil and see what happens.
Believe it or not, it’s an effortless method of propagation you can try right now.
There’s no harm in that!
3. Propagate from Leaf Cuttings
If you want to try this one, wait until June, just before the growing season starts.
The procedure suggests that you cut healthy leaves, petioles included, and place the leaves in a dry container with added peat-perlite mix.
Mind the spacing – some 4 inches apart is ideal. The stalk that holds the leaf connected to the plant should be completely submerged into the soil. Also, try to press the leaf a little bit down into the soil.
Make sure that the veins are fully in contact with the soil, but flat!
Keep the tray at room temperature and mist the leaves on regular basis. However, try not to waterlog it since that will lead to the leaves rotting before they get a chance to propagate.
Again, in some four to eight weeks, you will see new plants appearing from the soil.
Common Problems and Solutions
Growing plants would not be as nearly as fun without pests and other problems to deal with.
Most of the time you just wish to throw it all away!
But, before you do that, let’s check what to expect as a common problem with your Peperomia Hope and how to deal with it to the mutual satisfaction – yours and Peperomia Hope’s.
1. Maintenance Issues
Typically, the majority of the problems you will come across when growing Peperomia Hope at home are related to improper care.
You are either leaving it without water days on end or you are watering way too much.
Or, the soil isn’t right or the light is wrong.
All of these problems are manifested through different symptoms.
For example, when you notice the leaves on your Peperomia Hope are falling off, then consider repositioning it to a warmer place. The most common reason for the leaves to fall off is a cold draft.
Another thing you can do is check for water. If there’s too much of it, this could be another reason for the leaves to fall off.
Next, if the leaves of your PH start discoloring and fading to a dull green, then the plant most likely lacks light. Try changing the spot where you keep it and see what happens.
Another common problem due to poor maintenance encountered with PH is yellowing of the leaves followed by rather slow growth (this is exactly what happened with my Alocasia).
This means the roots have nowhere to grow and all the nutrients have been consumed. One quick fix is adding fertilizer to boost the NPK content. The second option is to repot and add fresh soil (a balanced mix of peat and perlite).
By the way, you do realize that the leaves can get scorched and burnt if you keep the plant at too strong sunlight?
Finally, I will just say you need to keep the plant at optimum moisture. Too much water, among other things, will cause a serious fungal infection. So, careful with water!
2. Pests, Pests, Pests Everywhere
Besides the maintenance/growth-related issues, the second issue you have to pay attention to with your peperomia is common pests that can affect the general well-being of your lovely Peperomia.
What you will typically find are aphids, scales, and mealybugs (why, of course!).
These can be unpleasant to the sight and more importantly, they will hinder the prosperity of your Hope.
If you want to stay on the safe side, there are some precautions you should take.
To begin with, regularly check the underside of the leaves for traces of any of the pests. Should you notice anything, pinch out the diseased and infected leaf immediately. This will prevent the infection from spreading to the nearby leaves and stems.
What will also be helpful is keeping the plant at a place with optimum air circulation. Also, if you wash the leaves from time to time, make sure they properly dry. Moist areas are a good precondition for pests. Avoid that.
If you still notice there are too many pests to deal with, then pesticide is the way to go.
Find some organic insecticide (some soaps or neem oil) to be used on your Peperomia Hope. This will be the end of pests and your plant will stay as healthy as ever.
It’s human nature to always have some extra questions and doubts about this or that.
So, let me try and help you out as best as I can by answering some of the most typical questions I saw people are still struggling with when it comes to growing Peperomia Hope in your home.
Here we go!
Should I mist Peperomia Hope?
Yes, you should! This is the simplest answer I can give. And, to elaborate…misting helps improve humidity. Also, water will be a true refreshment to the leaves and will keep them thick and fleshy.
Why are the leaves on my Peperomia Hope curling?
If you notice the leaves on your beautiful Peperomia Hope curling, it’s time for alarm! I know it might look “cute”, BUUUT! Curling leaves are the first sign of poor nutrition caused by root rot due to over-watering.
In such conditions of root rotting, the root can’t feed the plant properly so the leaves start curling as a symptom of malnutrition. Another reason could be bugs so check for these and act accordingly.
How do you make Peperomia Hope bushy?
Well, that’s easy! The long vines are usually falling down (optimum option) or you can use props to make them go upward. However, if you prefer to have your Peperomia Hope organized as a bush, there’s a rather simple hack you can try!
Just pinch out the long vines and shove them in the soil. Eventually, they will grow roots and you will have more stems in the same pot, leading to a rather bushy result.
How do you know when Peperomia Hope needs water?
When the leaves seem to be drooping a little – that’s your cue to water. However, don’t wait for so long. Check the soil and the saucer every day for water traces. If the top inch or two of the soil is dry, feel free to water. Also, if the tray is completely dry that means it’s time to water. As simple as that!
Is Peperomia Hope toxic to dogs?
It’s true that sometimes pets and plants aren’t a match made in heaven. Pets, more specifically dogs, are known to chew plant leaves which sometimes can have negative effects depending on whether the plant is poisonous or not.
As for our Peperomia Hope here, you can consider it safe for your dog(s), seeing how the entire Peperomia family is pet-friendly.
Can you propagate Peperomia Hope in water?
Why, of course, you can! This propagation method is already described chapters above, so you can safely place the cuttings into a jar filled with water and wait for it to develop roots.
So, my dearest ones, these would be some of the finest hacks and tips and tricks on how to grow a beautiful Peperomia Hope in your home.
You have all the tips on how to keep it healthy and how to propagate it further. So, heed my counsel, and let’s spread Hope everywhere!
Of course, send us your photos so we can admire these beauties together!