String of Pearls (Senecio rowleyanus)

String of Pearls is an eye-catching and easily recognisable plant due to its succulent leaves which resemble its name. Its spherical green beads beautifully trail down long, slim stems. The trailing stems can reach up to 1m in length making it the perfect hanging plant, ideal for cascading over the edge.

The String of Pearls has been cultivated as an indoor hanging plant. However, in its natural habitat (originating in South Africa) it vigorously creeps along the ground forming a mat as it goes. It is a very robust succulent and isn’t too picky about its growing conditions.

As it is a succulent the String of Pearls is drought tolerant. Its rounded leaves are designed to retain maximum levels of water in dry conditions. The most common problem with this pot plant is root rot due to overwatering. Ensure you have good drainage and don’t overwater. If its rounded leaves are becoming flat it is a sign that it is too dry.

If the String of Pearls have a cool enough period over winter they can flower in summer, producing clusters of small trumpet like flowers and a beautiful cinnamon smell.

Common Names: String of Pearls, String of Beads, Necklace Plant

String of Pearls Plant Care


It prefers a warm and dry environment.


Likes bright, indirect sunlight. It will thrive if given long light levels each day. Loves a sunny windowsill.


Allow the plant to dry out between waterings. Check the moisture level of the soil using your finger, if it feels damp further into the soil leave it a little longer. If it feels dry, water it. During the cooler winter months reduce the amount of watering.


As the String of Pearls is a succulent it prefers a soil that is free draining such as a cactus mix. Ensure that your pot has good drainage.


Prune regularly to promote a dense, multi-stemmed plant. If any stems become a little straggly or unhealthy looking don’t hesitate to cut them off.


Fertilise during the spring growth period with an all-purpose liquid plant food.


The String of Pearls is slightly toxic if ingested by humans or animals. Keep it out of reach of children.

Potential Problems

Overwatering: String of Pearls store water in their leaves, when overwatered they store too much water and become shrivelled and mushy.

Underwatering: If the pearls look flat, dry and shrivelled the soil is too dry. Give the plant a good watering and it should perk back up. You can remove any stems that are too far gone.