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Can String Of Pearls Get Sunburned? (+How To Fix)

The string of pearls is known for its beautiful pearl-like leaves. However, the leaves will lose their luster and start looking unhealthy if they get scorched. It will impact the whole plant and the health of the plant will deteriorate. But can a string of pearls get sunburned?

The string of pearls can get sunburned if it has been exposed to harsh afternoon sunlight. The leaves of the string of pearls will start shriveling, and the beads will have scars in them. That usually happens because the plant loses the moisture from the leaves, and as a result, it starts wilting.

If the leaves of the string of pearls start getting scorched, they will change color and become brown or discolored depending on the intensity of light.

It will help if you move your string of pearls away from direct sunlight to avoid further damage and prune the scorched leaves as the chances of the leaves recovering is low. Consider increasing the watering and the humidity to speed up the recovery.

It is sad to see scorched leaves on the string of pearls as they hardly recover and destroy the look of the plant. The only way of eliminating these leaves is by pruning them.

We will understand the causes and solutions of scorched leaves on your string of pearls. And we will also discuss the preventive measures that you can take to prevent sunburn.


I have done my best to address all of your concerns in the article below. However, if you still have any questions or are confused about the article, you can receive personalized one-on-one assistance from me by leaving a comment below. I will respond to your comment within a few hours.

Please note: Simplify Plants is reader-supported. Some links in the post are affiliate links and I get a commission from purchases made through links in the post.

Can String of Pearls grow in full sun?

The string of pearls requires six to eight hours of filtered light to thrive. It enjoys the morning direct sunlight, but the afternoon sun becomes too harsh for it.

If you place the string of pearls outside, it will get too much sun. You can move it out gradually or keep it on the balcony, provided you put it under the shade.

In their natural habitat, the string of pearls takes shade under other trees to save itself from the direct sun, but you will need to protect it from the direct sun when you keep it in your patio or backyard.

Exposure to direct sunlight burns the leaves and the plant, making it vulnerable and weak.

Avoid placing your string of pearls near a west-facing window that might get harsh afternoon sunlight or an east-facing window that will not get enough light throughout the day.

A south-facing window is ideal for this succulent as it gets a lot of light throughout the day but consider placing the plant a few feet away from the window.

If you don’t have a south-facing window available in your house, you can choose any other window. Just make sure that the plant doesn’t get direct sun.

If it is not getting enough light, you can use artificial lights to make up for it.

You can use sheer curtains to block the direct sunlight and let the filtered light pass through the window to the plant.

If you want a healthy string of pearls, provide sufficient indirect light regularly for six to eight hours.

Signs of sunburn on string of pearls

string of pearls bug

Sunburn affects the leaves of the plant, so if you see something wrong with the leaves, it might be due to sunburn.

Some signs that show that you have a sunburnt string of pearls are:

  • Shriveled pearls
  • Yellow leaves
  • Brown leaves
  • Crispy and dry leaves
  • Discolored or white leaves

If you notice brown and tiny spots on the leaves of your string of pearls, you should check if the plant is getting too much sun.

The leaves can have spots that vary in color from yellow to white or brown, depending on the intensity of sunburn.

If the plants are still placed under direct sun, the leaves will become crispy and dry, and there will be no chance of their recovery. These leaves will eventually fall off from the plant.

The string of pearls stores water in its leaves, and too much sun will put pressure on the leaves, due to which they will burst and shrivel. The plant will lose moisture and become dehydrated.

In case of sunburn, you’ll notice that the pearls that are hidden below the other leaves or are not getting light will not have any spots or discoloration.

What causes sunburn in string of pearls?

The first step to fixing scorched leaves on your string of pearls is to identify the problem first. We have mentioned some common causes of scorched leaves.

Direct sunlight


Exposure to direct sunlight is the most common cause of scorched leaves. The string of pearls doesn’t enjoy sitting under the direct sun as it becomes too harsh for it.

If your string of pearls is placed on the window or outside the house, it might be getting too much direct light. Direct sunlight scorches the top leaves that are exposed to the sun.

Sudden exposure to the sun

An indoor string of pearls will thrive under indirect sunlight and a controlled environment. But if you want to move it outside, you should do it gradually.

If you move your string of pearls out of the house one day and place it under direct sunlight, it will get sunburnt and will have scorched leaves. Other than the external damages, the plant will also have stress or shock because of it.

Therefore, if you plan to move the plant, take gradual actions instead of doing anything suddenly.

Brown spots on the string of pearls

Identifying the reason behind brown spots on your string of pearls might be tricky. There can be various reasons that cause brown spots other than sunburn.

The easiest way to identify if the cause is sunburn is to check all the leaves thoroughly. If the plant is sunburnt, only the upper leaves will have brown spots. The leaves that are not exposed to the sun or hidden under the other leaves will not have brown spots.

How to fix sunburned string of pearls?


If your string of pearls plant has scorched leaves, then there is little chance of any recovery. The only way of getting rid of scorched leaves is to prune them. 

Always use a pair of sterilized and sharp scissors or pruners to prune the string of pearls leaves. And make sure to make clean cuts.

Use gloves while pruning the plant to prevent any skin irritation due to the plant’s sap. Or wash your hands well after pruning.

After eliminating the damaged parts, make sure not to repeat the same mistakes that led to scorched leaves on the plant.

Here are some other points that you need to take care of:

  • If the leaves of your string of pearls are getting burnt, relocate the plant. Consider placing it in a bright spot where it gets filtered light throughout the day.
  • If you want to move the string of pearls outside where the light conditions will differ, don’t do it suddenly. Take small steps and make the change gradually so that the plant can adjust.
  • If the weather is too dry in your area, it can make the plant dehydrated and lead to shriveling pearls. You can increase the moisture for the plant by using a humidifier.

Tips for placement of string of pearls


Let’s check out all the factors that you need to consider before placing your string of pearls anywhere in the house.


The string of pearls loves indirect sunlight. Direct sunlight is too harsh for these plants, but they need six to eight hours of indirect light every day.

Choose a spot that gets sufficient light. If your house has a south-facing window, consider placing the plant near that window. Place the plant a few feet away so that it doesn’t get direct sun exposure.

If your house doesn’t have a bright spot, get artificial lights for the plant.

Also read: How Much Light Does String Of Pearls Need?


The string of pearls can do well in average room humidity levels. The humidity levels drop below average(40%) during winter, and that can cause discomfort for the plant.

Consider using a pebble tray or a humidifier to increase the humidity levels in the room. You can place the plant in any room with a higher humidity level, such as the kitchen, bathroom, or basement. You can even group the string of pearls with other plants to increase the humidity.

Also read: Should you mist string of pearls?


Average room temperature works fine for the string of pearls. But a sudden drop in temperature during winter can shock the plant.

Keep the string of pearls away from cold drafts and freezing temperatures. If you have placed the plant near the window, you can close the window or relocate it.

Avoid keeping the plant too near to the radiators or fireplaces. The heat can scorch or burn the leaves. If you want to provide some warmth to the plant, place it a few feet away from the heating source.

If you have an Aircon in the room, don’t let the cold air of the Aircon hit the plant as it can make the plant dry.


The string of pearls is toxic to the pets and children, so you should not place it in an area where your children and pets can reach.

Pets can face skin irritation, swelling, itching if they come in contact with the plant. And if they ingest it, they will have excessive drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, depression, etc. Consuming a large amount can cause severe health issues. So you should consult the vet immediately.

Children are more sensitive and curious than adults. They can have skin irritation if they touch the plant. Upon ingestion, they can have a stomach ache, diarrhea, or oral irritation.

You can hang the plant as it is a hanging succulent. That way, it will also stay out of reach of your pets and children.

Also read: Are String Of Pearls Toxic To Pets?

Final Words

If you don’t want to see scorched leaves on your string of pearls, keep it under indirect sunlight. Don’t expose the plant to direct sunlight that will burn the leaves.

If you have scorched leaves on the plant, prune them to get rid of them as they will not recover and let the plant focus its energy on new and healthy growth.

Ref: WikipediaMissouri Botanical GardenUniversity of Wisconsin.

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