Peperomia caperata is easy to care for houseplant that boasts small, textured leaves with gently tinted purple-red stems.
While the leaves are the most important feature of this plant, seeing it bloom indoors is common, and it’s odd rat tail shaped flowers are a sight on their own.
If you just got your hands on Peperomia caperata or are considering adding one to your home, read on to learn all about the needs and care for this plant as well as how to really make one happy.
In general, Peperomias do not require a lot of attention, which makes them great beginner plants.
You only need to water them when the soil feels dry (or when they start to drop their leaves). They don’t need to be fertilized often, either. As par as pests and diseases go, Peperomias, in general, are pretty resilient. Plus, they are pet friendly, so what’s not to love?
All the relevant info at a glance. Please read the whole article for more in-depth information about Peperomia Caperata, caring for the plant, and how to keep it happy and thriving in your home.
Plant name: Peperomia Caperata, Emerald Ripple Pepper, Napoli Nights, Peperomia caperata Lilian…. There are many varieties of this particular plant.
Native to: Bolivia
Lighting: medium to bright indirect sunlight, thrives in fluorescent light
Temperature: average warm temperatures
Care: watering when soil is dry, higher humidity is best
Common Problems: doesn’t like temperature drops
Toxicity: Considered Non-Toxic to Humans and Pets (read more here)
How To Care For Peperomia Caperata – jump to section
- Bringing the plant home
- Light conditions
- Toxicity information
- Pests and other common issues
Peperomia Caperata Care
As a tropical plant by nature, Peperomia caperata will appreciate higher humidity and warmer temperatures.
Peperomias have some succulent like characteristics; they have adapted to retain water better than most houseplants. This allows them to cope fairly well with infrequent watering. This plant will forgive you for forgetting to water it here and there or for not sticking to a strict watering regime.
Bringing the plant home
While Peperomias are generally resilient to pests, it’s still best to place the newly bought plant in quarantine when bringing it home (place it away from other plants already in the home). Find a good spot that gets indirect sunlight and leave the plant there for a week or two, often checking for signs of any potential disease or pest.
While you really shouldn’t expect any major trouble, a change of environment can shock the plant, so give it a couple of weeks to fully adjust to its new home. During this adjustment period, your Peperomia Caperata might not look it’s best.
If your plant has leaves that are heavily damaged, you can remove them.
Light – Where to Place Your Plant?
Peperomias prefer bright indirect sunlight. While they aren’t generally fussy with conditions that aren’t ideal, be sure not to expose them to too much direct sunlight as this will burn the leaves. They will do well under artificial light, too (making them great office plants).
If your plant doesn’t receive enough sunlight, it might become leggy (it will stretch towards the sunlight). Finding a position with better light and trimming the leaves will bring the plant back into shape.
Watering and Misting Leaves
Peperomia is efficient with storing water, so it won’t wilt if you forget about it for a while. The top layer of soil should dry out before you water the plant again. In the winter months, water the plant less.
Water with tepid water. You can water it from the bottom or with a can between the leaves – try to avoid watering over the leaves – while misting the leaves in summer is OK – watering the leaves directly and them being wet can seriously bring them harm.
You can mist the leaves occasionally during summer but do not mist them during colder months.
By nature, Peperomia capearata are jungle dwellers, so they do get a lot of humidity in their natural environment. While they will thrive in a room with higher humidity, they will do well in drier conditions as well. If you have drier air (which is mostly an issue with central heating in winter), your peperomia should do just fine.
If it needs more humidity, the best way to solve the issue is to add more plants around it :).
Cleaning / Plant Maintenance
Wondering how to clean your Peperomia caperata? How to clean the leaves? Seeing this plant is a bushy type with a lot of thick foliage cleaning each leaf individually isn’t a good idea for your sanity. Luckily you won’t really see the need to clean the leaves on this plant.
If you really feel you need to clean this plant, we recommend rinsing it under lukewarm water and letting the plant drip dry before you put it back in its place.
Do you need to fertilize Peperomia Caperata plant?
With this plant, you can over-fertilize much easier than under fertilize. Only fertilize during the growing season (summer months).
Fertilize sparingly with diluted fertilizer.
Peperomia caperata doesn’t need frequent repotting, so avoid it unless really necessary (repot only after several years). The plant itself won’t really grow much bigger, and it has a small root ball (and a preference for smaller pots).
A good sign to know it’s time to repot your Peperomia Caperata is when you see the roots coming out of the drain holes. When repotting (best done in spring), transfer the plant into a slightly bigger spot.
Your peperomia will want a soil that has good drainage.
There are multiple ways you can propagate a peperomia.
- propagate them in water – cut off a stem and place it in water
- leaf cuttings – cut leaf with a bit of stem to it and plant it
- stem cuttings – cut the stem and plant it
Peperomia caperate is considered non toxic to humans, cats and dogs. (animal toxicity information ASPCA)
* There have been no negative health issues reported with any varieties of Peperomia Caperata. Keep in mind toxicity information on plants can change. This is something that is best talked about with your veterinarian. Even with non-toxic plants, nibbling plants should be avoided, and keeping plants away from pets, especially if they like to eat them, is best.
Common Peperomia Problems and Pests
Leaves getting brown tips and edges
A sudden drop in temperature can cause this. Move your plant to an area with a warmer temperature and away from draughts.
Peperomia caperata loosing leaves
This can happen in winter, and the reason is the temperature in the room where the plant is too cold. Move the plant to an area with a warmer temperature.
While with many other plants, this would mean underwatering, with peperomia, it’s a sign of overwatering.
This can also happen if you overwater your plant.
If you can still see healthy roots, there is a chance to save your plant.
Peperomia caperata is really resilient to pests. There are some pets that you might see on this plant, and they include:
- spider mite
- fungus gnat
Frequently Asked Questions
Does peperomia caperata bloom indoors?
Yes. Although the blooms can surprise you as they look like greenish rat tails.