Created with Sketch. Plant ABC overview Preserving your pearls Plant ABC Words by Kelsey Lee Jones Illustrations by Camilla Perkins The String of Pearls (aka. Senecio rowleyanus) got its name from the British botanist Gordon Douglas Rowley, an expert in Cactaceae and succulents. In their natural environment, these plants are creepers that trail the ground and root where they touch. We’ve learned to love them as hanging houseplants, putting them proudly on display as if they were green beaded necklaces. Latin name: Senecio rowleyanus Nickname(s): String of Pearls, String of Beads, String of Peas, or Rosary Beads. Family: Asteraceae Native to: Southwest Africa Lifecycle: Perennial Soil: Sandy soil is suggested Special feature: Ball-shaped leaves, thanks to morphology (the shape came from an adaptation to arid environments that allowed for the storage of water). Keep it bright or shine the light Your plant will be happiest placed near a window that faces south or west. The plant will do well if it receives 2-3 hours of direct sunlight and bright, indirect light through the day. If you are unable to find such a place, you can also place them under a fluorescent light fixture. Perfect the potting Good drainage is important for this plant, this is why sandy soil is suggested. Mix soil and sand in the ratio of 3:1. Or alternatively, use a potting soil already mixed and meant for succulent plants. Always make sure that soil is well-drained. Easy on the watering Being a succulent plant, the String of Pearls has the amazing ability to retain moisture in its foliage. It’drought-tolerant and needs watering only occasionally – once or twice per month. Reduce the frequency during the winter, and always water in such a way that the soil is moist. Make it bloom When you let your plant rest, offer a temperature of 13-16°C, and cut back on watering in winter. The cool, dry conditions may promote blooming in spring. You’ll be excited if it happens and greeted with spectacular clusters of small, white trumpet-shaped flowers, studded with multicoloured stamens. Now that your String of Pearls hangs happily, try our tips for perfecting the Pilea plant. Share this article Related Longread Elspeth Diederix and her Miracle Garden On a recent trip to the Miracle Garden, our artist-in-residence Elspeth Diederix reminds us to appreciate the natural beauty of our surroundings. Interview Why we’re going gaga for gardening It’s 2018 and gardening is not just a pastime for our aunts and grandparents, it’s for the rich and famous, too. Longread Join the seed revolution 100,000 endangered seed varieties, and 94% lost altogether in the 20th Century. We talked to pioneers of London’s preservation scene to find out how we can take action. Longread Public space Brooklyn Grange Farm is the future of urban agriculture Brooklyn Grange is not just bringing fresh organic produce to New Yorkers, it has the ingenuity to transform the agricultural industry as we know it.