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Curio herreanus (String of Watermelons)

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Scientific Name

Curio herreanus (Dinter) P.V.Heath

Common Names

Gooseberry Plant, String of Beads, String of Pearls, String of Raindrops, String of Tears, String of Watermelons

Synonyms

Kleinia herreana, Kleinia herreiana, Senecio herreanus, Senecio herreianus

Scientific Classification

Family: Asteraceae
Subfamily: Asteroideae
Tribe: Senecioneae
Subtribe: Senecioninae
Genus: Curio

Origin

Native to Namibia and South Africa.

Description

Curio herreanus, formerly known as Senecio herreanus or Senecio herreianus, is a stunning succulent with trailing stems and subglobose leaves. It looks very similar to Curio rowleyanus but has larger and more elongate leaves. The stems are narrow and can grow over 12 inches (30 cm) long, trailing from a pot or creeping along the ground and rooting at the nodes. Leaves and green, lined with fine dark green or purple stripes and translucent "window." Exposure to bright sunlight will deepen the purple tones on the leaves and stems. Flowers are small, brush-like, white to nearly white, and appear from spring to fall on long peduncles.

The specific epithet "herreanus" honors Adolar Gottlieb Julius (Hans) Herre (1895-1979), explorer, horticulturist, and curator of Stellenbosch University Botanical Garden.

How to Grow and Care for Curio herreanus

Light: Keep Curio plants in partial shade if outdoors, which is their preference in summer, and bright sunlight if indoors. They will grow in full shade but will become lank and leggy.

Soil: These plants prefer well-draining soil. For growing Curio indoors, it is essential to use a container with at least one drainage hole at the bottom.

Hardiness: Curio herreanus can withstand temperatures as low as 25 to 50 °F (-3.9 to 10 °C), USDA hardiness zones 9b to 11b.

Watering: Curio plants are drought tolerant, but the soil should never be left dry for too long. They do need some water during the growing season but be careful not to leave the soil wet for prolonged periods.

Fertilizing: The members of this genus can take a bit more fertilizer than other succulents if you want them to grow fast.

Repotting: You do not need to repot Curio plants often. You can do it when you see that the container becomes too small or shallow.

Propagation: These plants can be grown from seeds or cuttings.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Curio.

Toxicity of Curio herreanus

Curio plants are toxic. Grow them with great care if you have children, pets, or livestock.

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