Peperomia obtusifolia (commonly known as Baby rubber plant) is an evergreen perennial, ornamental houseplant. Baby rubber plant can grow up to 10 inches tall and broad, with cupped leathery leaves. It has long stems and flashy, shiny, rounded but blunt-edged leaves 3 – 4 inches long. Leaf color is glossy dark green and the stems are slightly purple. White flower spikes only 2 – 3 inches long appear between late spring and early autumn. It purifies indoor air by expelling chemicals, such as formaldehyde or other toxins.
Scientific Name: Peperomia obtusifolia
Common Names: Baby rubber plant or Pepper face, Blunt-leaved peperomia.
How to grow and maintain Peperomia obtusifolia:
It thrives well in bright light, but no direct sun. Best indoor location is a north or east facing the window. Thrives under fluorescent lights.
It grows well in humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil or a peat based soil is best, 2 parts peat and 1 part perlite or sand is a good mix.
It prefers ideal temperatures of 65ºF – 75ºF / 18-24ºC and no lower than 59ºF / 15ºC.
Water moderately but consistently during the growing season, Keep the soil moist but not soggy. Allow the top one inch of soil to dry out between waterings. Reduce watering during the winter season.
Fertilize your plant monthly in the spring and summer with a diluted liquid fertilizer. Do not fertilize during the winter season.
It can be easily propagated by stem tip cuttings (Take cuttings in spring or early summer), leaf cuttings and plant division.
Peperomia obtusifolia plants can be pruned anywhere along the stem. If stems and leaves begin overgrowing you can pinch out the top of certain stems to stop growth, otherwise, they begin to grow spindly and out of shape in appearance. New growth develops from the nodes just below the cut in the stem.
Pests and Diseases:
There is no serious pest or disease problems. Watch for mealybugs, spider mites, and whitefly. Leaf spots may occur. Susceptible to root rot if soils are kept too moist.