How To Grow & Care For String of Bananas

The String of Bananas, a fascinating trailing succulent, has captured the hearts of plant enthusiasts around the world. Characterized by its banana-shaped leaves, this plant can make an eye-catching addition to any indoor garden, patio, or balcony. Its dangling vines, filled with cascading ‘bananas,’ create a mesmerizing visual effect that can be the centerpiece of a hanging basket or potted display.

Native to South Africa, the String of Bananas is part of the succulent family and thrives in dry, arid conditions. Its unique leaf shape is not just aesthetically appealing but serves a functional purpose too; the fleshy, elongated leaves store water, allowing the plant to endure periods of drought.

Growing the String of Bananas is relatively straightforward, making it a favorite among novice gardeners. Though it’s generally low-maintenance, it requires specific care and attention to flourish. Below are essential details and comprehensive guidelines for nurturing this intriguing plant.

Common NamesString of Bananas, Banana Vine
Botanical NameSenecio radicans
Plant TypeSucculent
Mature Size2-3 feet in length
Sun ExposureFull sun to partial shade
Soil TypeWell-drained, sandy or succulent mix soil
Hardiness Zones9-12
Native AreaSouth Africa

String of Bananas Care

The String of Bananas, with its distinct and charming appearance, is a relatively low-maintenance plant that thrives under the right conditions. Like most succulents, it requires a balance of sunlight, proper soil mixture, and controlled watering.

Due to its drought-resistant nature, overwatering is a more common mistake than underwatering. When given the right care, the String of Bananas will reward you with rapid growth, sometimes producing tiny white, fragrant flowers that add to its appeal.

Light Requirement for String of Bananas

The String of Bananas enjoys bright but indirect sunlight. While it can tolerate some direct sunlight, excessive exposure can cause leaf scorching. If grown indoors, placing it near a bright window with filtered light is ideal.

Soil Requirements for String of Bananas

A well-draining soil mix is crucial for the String of Bananas. Sandy soil or a specially formulated succulent mix works well. The soil should be porous to prevent waterlogging, which can lead to root rot.

Water Requirements for String of Bananas

Watering should be done sparingly, allowing the soil to dry out between watering sessions. During the growing season, watering can be more frequent, while in the winter months, it should be reduced significantly.

Temperature and Humidity

The String of Bananas prefers temperatures between 60-80°F (15-27°C). It’s not frost-tolerant, so if grown outdoors, it must be protected or brought inside during cold weather. Humidity is typically not an issue, but excessive moisture can lead to fungal problems.


A balanced, water-soluble fertilizer can be applied once a month during the growing season. It is vital to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and avoid over-fertilizing, as this can lead to weak, leggy growth.

Pruning String of Bananas

Regular pruning helps maintain a lush, full appearance. Dead or overgrown vines can be trimmed back to encourage new growth. Pruning also provides cuttings for propagation.

Propagating String of Bananas

This plant can be easily propagated through stem cuttings. Cuttings should be left to dry for a day or two before planting in well-draining soil.

How To Grow String of Bananas From Seed

Growing String of Bananas from seed is rarely practiced, as propagation through cuttings is more straightforward. If seeds are available, they should be sown in sandy soil and kept warm and lightly moist until germination.

Common Pests & Plant Diseases


These pests can be controlled with insecticidal soap or manual removal.

Root Rot

Caused by overwatering, the affected parts should be removed, and watering reduced.

Common Problems With String of Bananas

Yellowing Leaves

This might indicate overwatering. Reduce watering and ensure well-draining soil.

Leggy Growth

This might be a result of insufficient sunlight. Increase light exposure for bushier growth.

Shriveled Leaves

This could be a sign of underwatering. Increase watering frequency during the growing season.

Pro Tips

  1. Display in a hanging basket to showcase the trailing vines.
  2. Avoid overwatering; it’s better to underwater slightly.
  3. Place in bright but indirect light for optimal growth.
  4. Consider repotting every 2-3 years as the plant grows.
  5. Pair with other trailing succulents for a stunning mixed display.