String of Hearts Plant Guide: How to Grow & Care for your Plant with Decoration Great Ideas!

String of hearts
String of hearts

The String of Hearts is a great indoor plant if you’re looking to fill up a bright, high corner in your living room. Its heart-shaped leaves strung into a delicate, hanging vine along with its distinctive flowers make it a very popular choice in houseplants. 

Native to South Africa, The String of Hearts is a trailing semi-succulent. Although its real name is Ceropegia woodii, its purple vines with the delicate gray-green, heart-shaped leaves have earned it several nicknames, including the Rosary vine and Sweetheart vine. 

In suitable conditions, the string of hearts’ vines can grow up to a few feet long, even though its leaves stay quite small. The plant does bloom, albeit sparingly, in the late summer and fall, with pale magenta-colored flowers. 

Characteristics of the String of Hearts

Botanical NameCeropegia woodii
Common NameString of hearts, Rosary vine, Chain of hearts, Chinese lantern
Plant TypeSucculent, Vine, Evergreen
Mature Size2-5 cm. tall, 2 – 4 m. wide spread
Sun ExposurePartial Sun
Soil TypeWell-drained, Fertile
Soil PHAcidic, Neutral
Bloom TypeSummer
Flower ColorWhite to a pale purplish-red
Hardiness Zones9 – 12, USA
Native AreaSouthern Africa
PropagationCan be propagated using cuttings

How to Care for the String of Hearts

This plant is oddly lovable because of how low-maintenance it is. You won’t really have to fuss over it, even if you leave it in a less accessible space. Nonetheless, here are a few things you’ll need to know before you grow it. 

1. Sunlight

The String of Hearts plant requires lots of indirect sunlight. Although the plant may like a sunbath once in a while, too much direct sunlight could scorch the leaves. It would be best to keep this plant a few feet away from a South or West-facing window. You must know How Much Light Does Your Plant Needs?

2. Water

Because it has a succulent nature, the plant doesn’t require too much water. In fact, it prefers to dry out before it is watered again. Check the moisture in the pot before you water the plant. If the soil is moist right beneath the surface, or the soil is moist almost two-thirds of the way down the pot, skip watering and check back after one or two days. Aerating the soil is a great idea too since this helps moisture to be released and the soil may have been compacted by the store.

The String of Hearts is vulnerable to root rot if it is overwatered, so remember, if you’re unsure about its moisture level, let it a drought. If the leaves on your plant have softened or started to wilt, this is a sure indicator you’re not watering it often enough. An overwatered plant will often have yellow leaves and will begin to shed them after a while. 

3. Fertilizer

You can also fertilize the plant every few months (preferably in Spring and Summer) with an organic houseplant fertilizer. Fertilizing the plant in spring will help it flower best. Just try not to use too much fertilizer since this may burn the plant. Rotate the plant pot regularly to make sure it grows evenly, and dust the leaves regularly to help it photosynthesize better. 

4. Temperature and Humidity

The plant can be grown outdoors in a tropical or subtropical climate. In the winter, the plant requires a minimum temperature of 60F. For the rest of the year, a good temperature for the String of Hearts is 80-85F. It thrives in moderate humidity, about 40-50%. 

5. Potting

Equal parts succulent & cactus mix and coco coir serve as a great medium to grow the plant. The plant doesn’t grow extensive roots, so a medium-sized pot can last for two years or so. You can also replant cuttings of the vine as it gets longer, to give the pot a fuller look. 

6. Grooming

You could also help the plant grow new roots by positioning a stem’s nodes on soil and ‘pegging’ them under the soil a little. The nodes will soon take root here, giving your plant a fresh start. 

7. Propagating

You can use cuttings from a grown plant to create more plants. Prune the bottom stems of the donor plant, and separate a vine containing a minimum of two or four leaves. New roots will grow from nodes, so clear the leaves surrounding any nodes, submerge them in water, or transplant them directly to the soil. Using water or planting in Spring or Summer might give your plant better odds of survival and growth. Also, make sure the soil you use for fresh cutting is open and airy, not compacted. 

Strings of Hearts Decoration Ideas

Strings of heart plant

1. Hanging Displays

Because the String of Hearts is a trailing plant, the vessel looks best in hanging displays. You can hang up your string of hearts in a doorway, corridor, or in a window, taking care to let the dangling curtain show off its beaded leaves.

2. Wall Vases

Alternatively, nail a wall vase in an illuminated corner of a room or in the garage, and plant your String of Hearts in it. You could also place the pot at the corner of a high shelf so that the vines trail down the side. 

3. Garden Settings

The plant can also cover rock arrangements generously, cascade down walls, or offer ground cover for significant areas of land. In fact, the String of Hearts was originally discovered trailing from rocks in South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Swaziland. 

Common Diseases

Diseases aren’t altogether common with this species, but here are a few pests you need to beware of:

1. Aphids

Aphids are common sap-sucking insects, who really seem to enjoy the juicy leaves of the String of Hearts. A spray of neem oil on the leaves will prevent aphids from attacking your plants, and you can always use some insecticide if you actually see any. 

2. Mealybugs

Mealybugs or other scale insects might also sometimes attack the String of Hearts. Dip a cotton swab into rubbing alcohol, and use it to remove any bugs you find on the plant. Neem oil works as a preventive measure for these too.

Risks Associated with String of hearts

Ceropegia woodie has received no mention on the ASPCA list of Toxic and Non Toxic Plants, and our research suggests there isn’t a need for concern. The plant is non-toxic to humans and animals alike. 

What makes the String of Hearts a great choice?

Here are some reasons the String of Hearts makes a great indoor plant choice:  

1. Simple yet interesting

It’s a simple plant. It’s a great adornment for narrow spaces where other plants would overwhelm, and it’s interesting because of its unique foliage.

2. Low-maintenance

The plant grows fast and is super-easy to propagate. It also requires very little maintenance and can stay happily potted for several years.

3. Resilient

Even if it’s housed in a hard-to-reach space, the rosary vine doesn’t cause much trouble because it doesn’t need to be watered too often. It’s fairly resilient to pest attacks and disease and is even pet-safe because it’s non-toxic.

We love this plant because its heart-shaped leaves, its grey, and purple hues, and its sprawling vines make it a very unique addition to your indoor space. Add the fact that it’s low maintenance and grows fast, and it might just be the most lovable indoor plant in existence. 


Is String of Hearts easy to grow?

If you are asking if chain of hearts is easy to grow, the answer is yes. Both the mother plant and the baby plant below can be separated and repotted. Just cut the chain whenever you feel like and put it in water to root. It takes around 4 weeks for roots to form. Once you have rooted your baby plant, you can replant it to its own pot or leave it in the same pot with the mother plant.

What are the balls on string of hearts?

The balls on string of hearts are a type of aerial tuber called bulbils. They can grow from leaf nodes and swell to form white balls. They can then be laid back on the dirt in the pot, or laid on the dirt in a pot to the side of the plant, adding a little sand under the tuber to help prevent rot.

When should I repot my string of hearts?

When your string of hearts begins to outgrow its pot, it’s time for repotting. Select a pot that’s about two sizes larger than the old one. Fill it with potting soil that’s rich in nutrients. Water the soil well and let it drain before transferring the string of hearts into the new pot.

Written by Chris Buckland

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