Peperomias

How to Grow and Care for Peperomia Polybotrya (Raindrop Peperomia)

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The Peperomia Polybotrya or also known as the raindrop peperomia or coin-leaf peperomia is part of the Piperaceae family. This adorable peperomia will easily flourish given the right conditions and can be a low-maintenance addition to your plant collection.

Photo by the author of raindrop peperomia in a terracotta planter on a windowsill.
Photo by Author

The raindrop peperomia is native to South America’s tropical regions. This plant can also be mistaken for a ‘Chinese Money Plant’ as both share similar-looking qualities.

Like most peperomia, the raindrop peperomia will flower when it is happy with its environment. These flowers look like small, thin stalks that grow upwards in between leaves on the plant. You can choose whether or not to leave this on the plant, most flowers will fall off on their own. But can also be cut off if you decide you do not like the look of them.

Raindrop Peperomia Light

The raindrop peperomia will appreciate bright but indirect sunlight. Ensuring your peperomia is getting adequate light will help it thrive. Too much light and you risk drying out the plant faster and possibly burning the leaves.

Whereas too little light can cause your raindrop peperomia to become etiolated. This means that the plant grows taller, without pushing out new growth as it searches for light. To easily remedy this, move the plant to a spot with better light and maybe even prune back some of the longer stems.

Raindrop Peperomia Water

The raindrop peperomia enjoys when the top 1-2 inches of soil have dried out, before being watered again. A regular watering schedule is more important during the spring/summer when the raindrop peperomia is growing regularly. However, feel free to pull back a bit during dormant seasons, such as winter.

Not sure when to water your raindrop peperomia? Gently push your finger into the soil. If your finger comes out clean, your plant could use a drink. If your finger comes out with some soil on it, consider waiting a few more days to water it.

Overwatering your raindrop peperomia can result in wilted and droopy leaves. Overwatering can also lead to root rot which is fatal for your raindrop peperomia. And underwatered raindrop peperomia will have wilted, dry leaves and the tips of the leaves might become crispy.

The raindrop peperomia is able to store water, similar to a ZZ plant. However, unlike the ZZ plant, the raindrop peperomia does not have rhizomes. Take some time to discover your raindrop peperomias watering habits to create less stress for yourself and a thriving raindrop peperomia.

Raindrop Peperomia Soil

The raindrop peperomia enjoys soil that is well-draining. While it can survive in your regular indoor potting mix, consider adding some perlite or peat moss into the soil mixture to help it drain water better. A cactus mix can also work well for the raindrop peperomia if mixing soil is not your thing.

You also will generally not need to repot your raindrop peperomia. Unless you brought it home in a nursery pot that it was small and rooted in, or want to swap out the nursery soil for your own mixture, the raindrop peperomia will do just fine.

Temperature + Humidity

The raindrop peperomia is native to tropical regions of South America. This means that your raindrop peperomia will appreciate some humidity. The ideal temperature for your raindrop peperomia is between 65 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Most indoor temperatures are ideal for raindrop peperomia. The same can be said for the average humidity level in most homes. It is important to keep in mind, however, that during times like winter, when the air is colder and drier, humidity levels tend to drop.

I always encourage plant parents to buy a humidifier for their plants. Not only does it help to keep humidity levels consistent, but it can also be beneficial to humans! You also are not required to fork out a lot of money for one either. If a small humidifier from your local drugstore fits your budget, then grab that. I recommend this one from Amazon.

Raindrop Peperomia Fertilizer

In general, a balanced liquid fertilizer applied once a month during the growing season will help your raindrop peperomia, though it is not required. Most raindrop peperomia remain small in size and so fertilizer is not always required. In dormant seasons, like your other plants, the raindrop peperomia will not need to be fertilized. I recommend this fertilizer or Miracle-Gro Indoor Plant liquid fertilizer.

Photo by Author

Raindrop Peperomia Pruning

While the raindrop peperomia is not a plant that typically grows very large or out of control (looking at you pothos) pruning can be helpful to remove any dead or irregular leaves. Any leaves you prune that are still healthy, can be propagated and gifted or enjoyed as a new, baby plant.

Alongside pruning, be sure to keep your raindrop peperomia clean. Having a regular cleaning routine for your plants can also be beneficial. Using a simple mixture of 5 parts water, 1 part 70% rubbing alcohol, and a few drops of dish soap can go a long way to keeping your plants clean and helping to keep pests away. Simply spray a bit of the mixture on a cloth or paper towel and gently wipe down the leaves of your plants.

Pests

Being a houseplant, the raindrop peperomia can be susceptible to common houseplant pests. Such as thrips, aphids, spider mites, fungus gnats, and mealybugs. Regularly keeping your plants clean can help prevent or catch an early infestation.

Pet Safe?

Good news! The raindrop peperomia is pet safe for cats and dogs. While it might taste unpleasant, no parts of the plant will harm your furry babies.

Overall

The raindrop peperomia is an adorable little houseplant that will grow happily given the right conditions. It may take some time to develop a watering routine but it will be well worth it. Being pet-safe is also a big plus for those who love both pets and plants.