How to Save My Overwatered String of Pearls Plant

With the characteristics of a succulent strings of pearls ( Senecio rowleyanus)is an indoor plant that is extremely resistant to drought.

They require only a small amount of water to endure without water for long periods of time.

This is why it’s quite frequent to drown the plant, especially when you’re not aware of the plant’s characteristics.

The overwatering of your pearls can ruin your pearl necklace in the event that you aren’t able to come up with solutions in the beginning stages.

The presence of water that is excessive within the plant can result in the bursting of leaves, which gives the plant a wrinkled look. In the near future, you’ll notice the dead plant parts.

What can you do to fix an overwatered string of pearls plant?

If you do happen to drown the pearls on your string it is imperative to immediately take action in order to save the plant.

This includes draining any excess water out of the container, placing the pot under the bright lighting and reserving water for a longer time and then removing any damaged or rotten parts and repotting the whole plant (if required).

string of pearls plant in white room

What does an overwatered string of pearls plant appear like?

It’s simple to spot the signs of an overwatered pearl string due to the changes the pearls show outwardly.

With a keen eye You’ll be able to identify the signs early and then find a quick solution. Here are some physical signs of excessive watering in the form of a pearl string.

Root Rot

This one is somewhat tricky since, obviously it is impossible to notice the plant’s roots until you remove it from the dirt.

However, if you begin experiencing any browning or yellowing aboveground, it is time to start looking around. These signs usually indicate that roots are decaying.

Another thing to look for is the bottom on the plants. If there are areas which appear to be like mushy and brown, it could be a sign of root rot that is occurring beneath.

For your safety that you are in the right place, pull the plant from the pot and examine it the plant for yourself.

Yellowing of Leaves

The leaves’ yellowing is another sign of excessive watering. Similar to the reason why leaves shrink cells is that they break due to the excess water in the. This causes the death of the cell divisions of plants.

The yellowing signifies that cells are dying. The amount of yellowing is contingent on the severity of the damage. It is important to be aware of the first signs of yellowing.

Shriveled and Mushy Appearance

A pearl-colored spring that has been overwatered will appear shriveled. This is due to the breaking off of leaves because of the amount of water. If touched, the affected areas would appear mushy.

The bead-like structure of leaves may break. Certain strings could appear limp and weak.

These are indicators that you shouldn’t ignore because they are so important to the health of your plant.

Leaves Turn Brown

The leaves of yellow change color after a certain period of time. This indicates that a part or the entire plant may be likely to begin to rot. In extreme situations, when the overwatering is getting worse and the plant is in a state of decline, it could end up dying.

There is a way to differentiate the difference between browning due to overwatering and drowning-caused browning. The pearls’ string may change color to a purple due to stresses like root decay or fungus.

Browning caused by overwatering could appear slimy and turgid when it is touched. If the water is submerged the leaves will appear droopy and dry.

Edema (Oedema)

Certain cells don’t break when there’s a lot of water consumption. Each plant cell has a cell wall that expands to allow for fluids. Sometimes the stretching causes cells to expand too far.

In the end, you’ll see bumps protruding on the leaves’ surface.

The blister-like structures are known as the edema (oedema). Sometimes these spots cause leaves to yellow, and then fall from the plants.

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How to Fix Overwatered String of Pearls?

The changes mentioned above in the look of your pearl string could initially cause you to anxiety.

Don’t fret that not all problems with overwatering cause the death of the plant. Here are the steps to fix the problem of an overwatered string of pearls.

Drain Excess Water

Examine for stagnant water within the container. It is essential to eliminate any stagnant water to avoid any further damage to the roots. This can be accomplished by gentle tilting your pot to the side, allowing the water to flow in a sideways direction.

Place The String Of Pearl Under Bright Light

If the water is held by earth, it is possible to speed up the process of evaporation by placing your pearl string under the sun. The heat generated increases the temperature. In turn, the soil will begin to dry quicker.

The rate of transpiration also rises as temperatures rise. This causes the plant to shed more water via its stomata. This means that the chance of cells becoming broken will be reduced.

Withhold Water For A Longer Period

If you’ve come to the conclusion that excessive watering is the main issue It’s time to stop watering your plant for a while.

The soil is still saturated with water, and you need to wait until it is completely dry.

You can extend the interval between waterings to ensure that the water doesn’t get clogged inside the pot.

String of pearls are tolerant of drought conditions , so it helps when the soil is dry instead of wet.

You may not water for a few weeks until you can see that the plant recovering from the water stress. Then, you can begin watering your plant once more.

Remove The Damaged Portions

The parts that have been damaged by the plant that was overwatered would not be of any use anymore.

It’s sensible to cut these sections off in order to preserve the appearance. This is also a method of getting rid of your plant.

This will stop further rotting of the pearl string. In addition it will encourage the development of offspring that could replace the damaged portions.

Repot String of Pearls

If the root damage has become more severe, repotting must be carried out immediately. It is possible to uproot the plant by taking it out of its pot. It is best to shake it off to remove the soil.

Take extra care when you take care of the plant. In this moment, the plant is already delicate and easily snagged. We don’t want to further damage the already existing one.

Check the roots to determine the extent of damage. Take out the rotten parts. Let the roots dry, then plant them in a different pot.

It is important use an potting mix that drains to prevent the risks of stagnant water.

How to Water String of Pearls

The process of watering a succulent such as the string of pearls can be somewhat difficult. We know it requires only a small quantity of water. However, the issue is, how much is small?

The supply of water to plants is affected by a variety of aspects. It’s not just the quantity that is important. It also considers the time of day, the weather and the quality of the water, and many more.

To help us, we have provided the following guidelines for how to properly wash a pearl string:

Watering Rules

The watering is coming from below

The process of supplying water from the bottom upwards is a method you could apply to watering a the pearl spring.

This technique lets the pot stand on a surface covered with water for about 10 minutes. The water is absorbed from beneath by the root of the plant.

This is more effective since the roots are first to come into contact with the water.

They’ll be able to soak up the water they require without having to soak the soil for too long.

Watering From Top

Watering from above the surface of the soil is the most traditional method of watering.

If you decide to soak your pearl string in this manner, there’s no issue with it. However, you must ensure that you are watering thoroughly.

Make sure that the watering container is long and narrow with a nose so that water can be directed directly onto the soil.

Don’t wet the beads because this can promote fungal growth.

Watering Frequency

Since the string of pearls won’t be receiving more water It’s crucial to remember the last time you given the plant water.

This will allow you to count the days and make sure you’ve received water only twice a week.

This schedule isn’t set in stone. It is important to determine the soil’s moisture prior to giving water.

If you dip your finger one inch below, you’ll get an impression of the soil’s water. Then, you’ll be able to decide whether or not.

There are instances when string of pearls need less watering. This is contingent on a variety of aspects that are described in the following manner:

Factors that influence the watering Frequency

Changing Season

It is important to keep track of the seasonal changes as this will determine the amount of water that should be provided for the plants. In summer, the temperature is likely to be high. At this point, water is recommended to be provided at a regular rate, that is each two weeks.

However there is a very low or no water is required during winter. Cold temperatures can result in a lower transpiration rate. The pearls on your string won’t lose much water , so you should water it minimum once per month.

Humidity Level

String of pearls require an environment that is less humid. There are instances where humidity increases indoors, so it is recommended to limit the amount of water you apply. In humid environments, it can add moisture to the plant, so there’s no need to add additional.

Soil’s Water Holding Capacity and Porosity

Making sure you have the correct mix of potting soil is crucial to prevent overwatering. A well-drained potting mix is the best choice.

Mixing soil and sand in equal portions will allow you to create a porous structure for the soil.

The existence of space in the soil is crucial. This allows water molecules to move through easily. If the soil is not compact and hard, water will have difficult time getting out.

However the high capacity for water retention assists the soil to retain more water when it is time to water.

This way the soil will have enough storage capacity to meet the needs of the plant over longer durations. In the end, it is less frequent to water. will be reduced.

Drainage Capacity

Drainage holes aid in getting rid of any excess water that is in the pot. It is recommended to use pots that have drainage holes rather than those that don’t include drainage holes.

With a good drainage system the water won’t stay stagnant for too long.

The water that is stagnant is the main reason for root rot, as well as fungal issues.

Even if you’re providing enough water, if you don’t have good drainage, there’s a good possibility that your string of pearls will be excessively drained.

Water Quality

The provision of water to plants is vital, but that doesn’t mean we should simply give any type of water that we can find.

Be aware that water contains a lot of particles even though it appears clear. Certain of them could impact the health of plants in a significant way.

Take a look at, for instance tap water that has been heavily treated with fluorine and chlorine. It is used to water your plants in the house may be okay for the moment, however, over time, it could result in a build-up of salts.

To prevent this from happening avoid this, it is recommended to allow the tap water to rest for 24 hours prior to making use of them in order for the fluorine and chlorine to evaporate first.

It is true that rainwater is the most suitable option for your plant’s requirements. Therefore, make the most of the rainy season to fill up a bucket or two to make your own string of pearls.

Take the rainwater in the middle of the rain showers so that you don’t get an acidic rain.

How Much and When to Water

The quantity of water that will be used will depend on the dimensions that the plants are. When you water, you need allow it to flow for a long time until it drains from drain holes. There should be no water left to overflow the pot.

Additionally, water must be evenly distributed on the soil, so that you are able to spread it all over the pot.

Do not water only one side. This can cause an uneven development of roots.

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It is recommended to supply water in the early morning hours. This allows enough room for the water to evaporate.

You don’t have to fret about the possibility of having water dripping in the pots that make up your pearl string.

When to Water After Transplanting String of Pearls

If you’ve succeeded in establishing the pearl string to propagate the next step is transplanting.

Transferring the plants from pots to the next could be a bit difficult. The string of pearls has an entirely new location to become used to.

It is essential to water the plant right away after you’ve planted the plant. It will definitely require additional water since the new soil it was planted on is now dry.

Then, soak the pot in water and then drain it thoroughly before putting it in a new place.

The newly transplanted string of pearls once per week for a while until the roots are established.

Make sure it gets enough sunlight. Then, you can gradually change to a more frequent watering frequency.

Common Mistakes in Watering String of Pearls

Source: University of Wisconsin-Madison

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. How can you bring back the dying pearls?

If your string of pearls is becoming worse and is close to dying, the best thing you can do is to immediately pot the plant.

Most likely, the roots are severely damaged due to root rot. Take out the damaged areas and save any remaining living tissue remains and plant it in a new pot.

  1. What can you determine if a string of pearls is rotten?

The browning and yellowing of leaves indicates that the root of the pearl string begin to decay.

Inability for decayed roots to channel nutrients and water can cause the cells of the aboveground portion to end up dying. This is the reason you’ll see the roots changing in color.

Additionally, you’ll observe the plant becoming soft when it was touched. In general, the plant will appear weak and limp.

If you’re still unsure then you may take the plant out of its pot to determine the state of the roots.

  1. Do you have the ability to bottom the a pearl string in water?

Bottom watering is a technique that requires experience, but once you master it, you are able to apply it to your pearl string.

It is just a matter of being cautious not to get the beads while allowing the pot to rest on the saucer that is filled with water.

Don’t allow the pot to sit for too long as it could cause the roots to drown. This could trigger root rot, which we do not want this.

Every now and then it is necessary to water your plant from time up in order to get rid of the build-up of salt.



Went from a bad gardener to a half-decent one over 10+ years. Super happy to share my tips and tricks with you :)