Peperomia albovittata (pep-er-ROH-mee-uh al-boh-vy-TAY-tuh) is a cultivar developed in the Netherlands. Like its many cousins, this tropical perennial is an attractive and popular houseplant.
Peperomia plants like the watermelon peperomia are members of the Piperaceae family of plants. In general, they come from the rainforests of South America.
With their epiphytic growing habit, Peperomia seems very much like succulent plants. They prefer loamy soil, cool temperatures, high humidity, and dappled sunlight.
The common names for Peperomia albovittata include:
- Piccolo Banda
- Ivy Leaf Peperomia
Peperomia are also sometimes referred to as Radiator Plants which is the common name given to all Peperomia species with Peperomia obtusifolia being one of the most popular.
The plants’ genus name refers to the fact that it is a member of the Piperaceae family. The specific epithet, albovittata, means “with white stripes or bands.”
Peperomia Albovittata Care
Size & Growth
The slow-growing Peperomia albovittata plant attains a height of 8” -12” inches, not counting the flower spikes.
Piccolo Banda has very pale, thick, silvery green round medium-sized leaves marked by heavy veining in shades of deep green or purple running in bands the length of the leaves. The red stems of the Peperomia albovittata are succulent and fleshy.
Peperomia Plant Flowering & Fragrance
Individual peperomia plant flowers are unscented tiny and difficult to see. They grow very close together on tall, red spikes which typically appear in the springtime.
They are interesting looking, but many peperomia plant owners simply pinch them off because the foliage is the main point of interest.
Light & Temperature
Ivy Leaf Peperomia does well in bright, indirect light. It can tolerate more direct sunlight in the morning hours or during the wintertime, but a very hot summer sun can burn the plants’ leaves.
During very hot times of the year, place your Peperomia plant far enough away from the window so it will still receive bright sunlight without being hit by the direct rays of the sun.
Peperomia prefers warm temperatures ranging from 68° to 86° degrees Fahrenheit. In winter, the plant can tolerate temperatures ranging from 59° to 68° degrees Fahrenheit.
Water & Feeding
Allow the soil of your radiator plant to become almost completely dry and then water deeply. Avoid overwatering, and do not allow your Peperomia Piccolo banda to stand in water.
You can use any commercial houseplant fertilizer in pellet, granular, stick, or liquid form. We’ve found Peperomia plants respond well to liquid fertilizer applications and Peperomia albovittata is no different.
From spring through autumn, fertilize monthly. Do not fertilize in the wintertime.
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Soil & Transplanting
Remember that Peperomias are an epiphytic plant, do does best with a soilless potting medium. However, it can also do well with a standard potting mix that does not contain peat moss. Alternatively, you can use a commercial cactus mix.
Some good ingredients for a Peperomia potting mix include:
- Worm Compost
- Orchid Bark
- Coco Fiber
If you’re using regular potting soil as a base, mix it half-and-half with lighter ingredients such as cactus mix, coco coir, perlite and/or pumice.
Ivy Leaf Peperomia does not need to be repotted frequently. These plants do best when slightly root bound, so plan on repotting once every couple of years.
When you repot, prune the roots and return the plant to its original pot with fresh potting medium or move up to the next size pot.
Peperomia Piccolo Banda Care – Grooming & Maintenance
The peperomia plant does not need much in the way of grooming. In fact, heavy pruning will damage the plant.
If your plant does become too tall and ungainly, trim it back with a very sharp knife or pair of scissors. For the most part, simply keep an eye out for any dead, damaged leaves or stems needing pinching or removal.
The leaves and form of Peperomia Albovittata resembles the popular Peperomia Caperata (aka red ripple Peperomia) including Peperomia Rosso and Peperomia Frost.
How To Propagate Peperomia Albovittata
All Peperomia plants can be grown easily from leaf cuttings and stem cuttings. This is best done at very warm times of the year when temperatures range between 72° and 86° degrees Fahrenheit.
Plant peperomia banda cuttings in clean, damp potting medium. Cover the containers with a plastic bag and place them in an area that receives bright indirect light. NO direct sunlight!
Remove the bag for an hour or so daily to prevent mold growth. Within a couple of weeks, your cuttings should begin showing new growth.
Peperomia Albovittata Pests or Diseases
These attractive tropical plants are surprisingly carefree. Any problems they do experience tend to stem from overwatering. This can cause wilting, scabby spots on the leaves, sudden leaf drop, root rot, and even death.
Sudden changes in temperature and excessive fertilizing can also cause these problems. Plants that are weakened by poor care are susceptible to mealybugs.
Is Peperomia Considered Toxic or Poisonous?
Peperomia Albovittata is not toxic, but as an ornamental plant do not eat it. However, you should provide the plant with sensible protection from curious kids and pets.
Is Peperomia Considered Invasive?
The mild-mannered peperomia houseplant is not known to be invasive.
Suggested Peperomia Albovittata Uses
Radiator Plants like the Piccolo Banda are very much on a trend. They are an excellent choice as a gift plant and break the traditional dark green leaves houseplant.
These are easy care plants, make a great first impression, and they give even the most novice gardener a reliable opportunity for success.
With their shade loving habits, attractive leaves, and small size, these plants are right at home in an office setting, as a table centerpiece, displayed on a small table or in a dish garden. They can also do quite well in hanging baskets.