Plant of the Month Archive: String of Dolphins
STRING OF DOLPHINS/SENECIO PEREGRINUS
all about the string of dolphins!
It’s August and hopefully you’ve all had moments to be on the beach and near the ocean this summer – because we all know nothing says summer vacation like a day (or two or three or twenty!) at the beach. Personally, whenever I go to the beach I hope and pray that the dolphins will come say hi! There’s very little that gets me feeling as ecstatic and giddy as seeing dolphins swimming and playing in the ocean! It was actually my love for and interest in dolphins that inspired me to fall in love with the ocean, study marine biodiversity and get involved in environmental education. I truly believe that it was my love for the dolphins which began my whole journey as a messenger for Nature. So yeah, I kind of have a thing for dolphins!!!
Anyway, I digress, let’s get back to the “It” Succulent of the Summer – the hot plant of the moment - String of Dolphins (Senecio peregrinus)! This adorable spilling (or trailing) succulent is actually a hybrid of the String of Pearls (curio/senecio rowleyanus) and the Candle Plant (Senecio articulates). The cute little leaves actually look like tiny dolphins leaping off their trailing stem! And just like the String of Pearls, the little white flowers this succulent puts out when in bloom smell just like cinnamon. Seriously, how could you not fall in love with these fun plants?!
caring for your string of dolphins:
This succulent prefers more shaded indirect light – and like the String of Pearls it would need to be properly acclimated before being placed in brighter light conditions. String of pearls are known to change color when exposed to bright direct sunlight. I am not sure if String of Dolphins would do the same, but I have a feeling they would. They prefer temperatures on average in the 70s during their growing season, and prefers cooler temperatures – in the 50s – for the winter period.
Like with most succulents it’s best to let the soil go dry between waterings. These succulents don’t like to be left dry for long though, so you want to make sure you are watering often enough that the dolphin shaped leaves stay thick and vibrant. If you see them start to pucker, that is a sign of needing water. These plants do go dormant during the winter season, and require far less water at that time. A general recommendation is to water your String of Dolphins about once per week during their growing season (Spring to early Fall) and then to only water once per month during their winter dormancy season!
They also prefer to be planted in pots only slightly bigger than themselves, because they do thrive in more cramped spaces (as do many succulents).
While I have only just received my first strand of these beauties to grow and learn from, based on the research I’ve done, I believe these make a great choice for indoor succulents, as long as they are placed in sunny spot near a window source. I will let you know what I’m noting as I progress in propagating my little String of Dolphin clipping!
Do you have the String of Dolphins in your plant collection? What have you learned about caring for these charming plants? Drop me a message and let me know you about experience with the whimsical String of Dolphins!
Thanks for reading and be sure to reach out with any questions or comments!
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RACHAEL COHEN is the creator & owner of INFINITE SUCCULENT, a plant art, styling and educational service in San Diego, Ca.
Through her art and styling, as well as her writings & workshops, Rachael connects and engages her clients with the natural world. Simultaneously, she helps them achieve the botanical atmosphere of their dreams!
Rachael’s book of succulent crafts - Infinite Succulent: Miniature Living Art to Keep or Share - will be released end of February 2019.