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Something's wrong with this pilea peperomioides..

This has been going on for a while. The leaves have paled and are semi droopy. There are a lot of shoots coming up at the base so I think it may be a deficiency of some nutrient? Anyone with knowledge on these plants please? Any advice?

The plant is on a windowsill (north facing) with plenty of indirect light. No radiators near.


  • All plants lose their old  leaves throughout their lifetime so given that there are new healthy leaves appearing at the base I would remove the old ones. 

    Ensure that the pot isn’t sitting in water inside the white cache pot ... these plants hate having soggy roots. 

    I would repot into fresh houseplant compost in early March. 

    Hope that helps 😊 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Thank you Dove. I have removed the yellow leaves and have made sure that there's no standing water at the bottom of the cache pot. I tend to water the plant once a week. I get it out of the chache pot and then water int he sink and let the brown pot stand there for 10 minutes so that any excess water drains off. then I place it back in the chache pot and in the same spot on the windowsill.

    My concern is that the yellowing of the leaves is not rregular (i.e. it's not just the lower leaves that have yellowed). It is rather irregular in nature and yellow leaves are also present in the new shoots. Also, all the leaves are droopy. This is usually a sign of lack of water but I know that is not the case.

    All the plants that I have seen online, beloning to different collectors, seem to be quite uniform. Whereas mine, ow that the leaves are removed, looks quite scraggy.
  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,700
    I would not have it right up against a window. These plants are fine away from the window and even in bright direct light, they are fine. I think it's suffering a combination of cold and warmth in short periods due to being placed by a window and possible over watering.

    There is also no need to water it once a week in the cooler months. I sometimes forget and water mine every 10 days. In the summer maybe water a bit more but I simply fill the base of the saucer full roughly every 8-10 days and that's it.

    In poor light, they can grow tall and leggy. I can't see how the plant is growing, but if this is starting to happen, just prune out the central stem down, and lots of baby shoots form from the base making it more bushy. They do grow fast so do not worry about pruning out leaves that have passed their best. They should re-grow new leaves quite soon.
  • I am watering every 10 (or so) days and I place it under the tap and let it drain for a bit before placing back in the cache pot.

    The yellowing was happening during summer when the temperatures were stable and never under 16 degrees ( the heating system is on a Nest thermostat and kicks in automatically if temperatures go below that).

    It has grown quite nice and no sign of tall and leggy so far. It also has plenty of baby shoots at the bottom. I will have to re-plant these baby ones at some point but am not quite sure how to do it. Any clues about re-potting please? Is it just a case of dig the baby shoots out and repot or is there more to it?
  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,700
    edited November 2019
    I have done a few and have given them away. Simply dig down to around 2cms deep and cut the roots underneath the baby shoots. Repot into a much smaller pot of maybe 10cm diameter and replant at exactly the same depth. I used houseplant compost. It seemed to work. 

    Regarding watering, now we are into the winter time, there is no need to run it under a tap. Just water from below every 10 days, and they should do fine. The soil should dry out between watering.
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