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Curio radicans (String of Bananas)

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Scientific Name

Curio radicans (L.) P.V.Heath

Common Name(s)

Banana Vine, Creeping Berry, Fishhook Senecio, Necklace Plant, String of Bananas, String of Fishhooks, String of Pearls

Synonym(s)

Cacalia radicans, Kleinia adenocalyx, Kleinia radicans, Senecio adenocalyx, Senecio gonocladus, Senecio radicans, Senecio rhopalodenia

Scientific Classification

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

Origin

This species is native to South Africa.

Description

Curio radicans, also known as Senecio radicans, is a popular hanging succulent with stems lined with banana-shaped leaves. The stems can hang up to up to 3 feet (90 cm) long. Leaves are fleshy, green with translucent lines on either side and up to 1.2 inches (3 cm) long. Flowers are tiny, white, cinnamon-scented, and usually appear in late winter or early spring.

Etymology

The specific epithet "radicans (RAD-ee-kans)" means "rooting" or "taking root" and refers to the stems which root along their length. It is the present participle of the Latin verb "radico."

How to Grow and Care for Curio radicans

Light: Keep your C. radicans in partial shade if outdoors and bright sunlight if indoors. Avoid intense afternoon sun in summer. It will grow in full shade but will become lank and leggy.

Soil: This plant prefers well-draining soil. It is essential to use a container with at least one drainage hole at the bottom for growing indoors.

Hardiness: C. radicans can withstand temperatures as low as 30 to 50 °F (-1.1 to 10 °C), USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b, but will not survive consistent temperatures below freezing.

Watering: Water regularly during the growing season, allowing the soil to dry out between waterings. C. radicans is drought tolerant, but the soil should never be left dry for too long. Reduce watering frequency during the winter months. Water only if the soil is completely dry.

Fertilizing: Feed the plant once a year, in summer, with a dilute solution of a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer.

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

Propagation: This plant can be grown from seeds or cuttings. Seeds need warm temperatures or using seed warmer and constant moisture to germinate. Take cuttings during the spring and summer.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Curio.

Toxicity of Curio radicans

C. radicans is a toxic plant. Grow it with great care if you have children, pets, or livestock.

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