Pilea Depressa : Complete Care Guide

Pilea Depressa in a pot

Maybe you are one of those people who love vines and trailing plants. Well, you are in luck because today I will present one of those: Pilea Depressa!

This stunning plant is sometimes wrongly called “Baby Tears” because it is very similar to Soleirolia soleirolii (the real Baby Tears).

Pilea Despressa is a creeping plant with tiny bright green leaves. Its foliage is plump and evergreen and covers long slender pinkish stems.

Native to the Caribbean, Pilea Depressa is a low-maintenance houseplant.

Furthermore, it is an ideal plant for terrariums because it likes humidity.

Moreover, you can either grow Pilea Depressa indoors or outdoors. Since it is an ornamental plant, it will perfectly sit in a hanging basket.

I bet you are curious to know how you can grow and take care of this beautiful plant. Then without further ado, let’s get to it.

Pilea Depressa Hanging

Light Requirements

Like many trailing plants, Pilea Depressa doesn’t like direct sunlight. In the wild, this plant grows on the ground shaded by tall trees (Monstera too). Therefore, it grows best in bright indirect likes when indoors.

In other words, the sunlight must bounce on something before reaching the plant. Otherwise, it should go through a barrier such as sheer curtains and then land on it.

Direct sunlight will scorch the leaves of your plant, and they will turn brown.

So, when outdoors, it is best to put your Pilea Depressa in a shaded area. If you decide to put it inside your home, then a west-facing windowsill is the perfect spot for it.

We all know that the perfect spot is sometimes hard to find, so you can switch to LED grow lights to provide enough lighting for your plant in case you don’t have one.

Also, I should mention that if Pilea Depressa doesn’t get enough light, its leaves will start wilting.

Watering Needs

When it comes to how much water this plant needs, you will hear diverging opinions.

Some will tell you: the more, the better. Others will advise you to hold off on watering until the soil is completely dry.

I would suggest you let it dry halfway before watering again. When you do, leave the substrate mildly damp but not soggy.

It is better to feel the soil with your fingers rather than water on a schedule. So, put your fingers deep in the mix and check that it is halfway dry before grabbing your watering can.

Also, root rot is always something to fear when watering your plant. Therefore, you should avoid leaving the roots of your plant sitting in water.

Pro tip: it would be easier to try bottom watering. Since the foliage is dense and close to the soil, it will get in the way when watering.

Soil Advice

The key is to provide your Pilea Depressa with enough water while avoiding root rot. Therefore, the soil must retain moisture and be well-draining at the same time.

I suggest you go with a potting mix that includes: perlite for aeration, vermiculite for water retention, and peat moss for nutrients.

You can find an adequate substrate on Etsy.

Potting & Repotting

From what I have explained so far, it is clear that drainage is crucial. Consequently, you should go with a plastic pot with drainage holes.

These will help avoid root rot and alternatively hint at a potential repotting need.

Indeed, you may need to repot your Pilea Deperssa every year or two because it doesn’t like to be root bound. A quick way to detect it is to check whether roots pop out of the drainage holes.

If that’s the case, move it gently to a pot one size up. Furthermore, it would be best to do it during the growing seasons (spring and summer). Here is a complete article on the subject.

Temperature & Humidity Levels

Pilea Depressa is native to tropical regions. It should come as no surprise to you that it likes hot temperatures and hates cold frosty ones.

Therefore, it thrives best in a range between 68℉ (20℃) and 95℉ (35℃). Consequently, it would be best to avoid lower temperatures.

Also, put your plant away from any cold drafts.

Furthermore, as I’ve said before, Pilea Depressa is ideal for terrariums. This is because it loves humidity.

Indeed, your plant will grow best in humidity levels between 60% and 80%.

If you live in a dry area, you can use a humidifier to increase the humidity levels around it.

Growth & Pruning

The plant grows relatively fast under the right conditions. It will reach up to 8 inches tall while growing in all directions.

Consequently, although it doesn’t usually need pruning, you may want to trim it sometimes to control its shape and size.

If you decide so, always use sterilized pruning shears, and don’t cut it if it is blooming.

I should mention that Pilea Depressa grows tiny, white flowers in clusters.

Pilea Depressa flowers


I am not a big fan of fertilizing as I prefer natural growth.

That aside, you can still fertilize during the growing months using a liquid fertilizer. Once per month is enough.

Follow the instructions on the packaging and avoid fertilizing in winter.

Pilea Depressa Propagation

The best way to propagate Pilea Depressa is through stem cuttings. You can choose water or soil propagation, but the steps are mainly the same. I will briefly explain water propagation since it is my preferred way of doing it.

  1. Cut a piece of stem that is at least 4 inches long. Use clean pruning shears to avoid any infection.
  2. Remove any bottom leaves to prevent them from getting in the way later. 
  3. Fill a glass jar with distilled water. It will allow you to see the root developing later on. You can also use tap water, but let it sit overnight before using it.
  4. Ensure that no leaves are in touch with the water.
  5. Put the jar on a west-facing windowsill or anywhere with bright indirect light. Natural light is preferred to artificial light during this stage.
  6. Replace the water whenever it starts changing its color.
  7. After a week or two, you will start noticing roots developing.
  8. Wait until the roots are at least one and a half inches long before putting the cuttings in a pot with soil. 


Should I mist my Pilea Depressa?

Yes. Pilea Depressa loves humidity. So you should mist it from time to time, especially on hot summer days.

Is Pilea Depressa toxic to pets?

No, Pilea Depressa is not toxic to cats or dogs.

Is Pilea Depressa fast-growing?

Yes. If you provide the right conditions when it comes to watering, soil, and lighting, your Pilea Depressa will grow relatively fast.

Does Pilea Depressa grow flowers?

Yes. Pilea Depressa grows clusters of tiny white flowers.


In summary, Pilea Depressa is a great houseplant to grow if you like creeping plants. Indeed, it has basic requirements, and it is easy to propagate.

It is also a versatile plant that looks great in hanging baskets or a terrarium.

However, you shouldn’t confuse it with Soleirolia soleirolii (the real Baby Tears). Pilea Depressa has scalloped edges, while Baby Tears has smooth round margins.

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