If you are on a mission to find plants that are similar to baby tears, then you’re certainly at the right place! Soleirolia Soleirolii is a unique perennial plant that is sturdy, with a gorgeous set of circular leaves that seem like a carpet from afar.
Here we will explore alternative plants that closely resemble the Soleirolia, with all the right tips and tricks to help you identify them better and take care of them.
- A List of Plants Similar to Baby Tears
- 1. Sedum Album “Coral Carpet”
- 2. Pilea Depressa “Tiny Tears”
- 3. Ficus Pumila
- 4. Hemianthus Micranthemoides “Pearl Grass”
- 5. Glossostigma Elatinoides “Glosso”
- 6. Irish Moss “Sea Moss”
- 7. Portulaca Grandiflora “Moss Rose”
- 8. Muehlenbeckia Complexa
- 9. Gazania Rigens / Spledens (Treasure Flower)
- 10. Oenothera Speciosa (Showy Evening Primrose)
- 11. Crassula Arborescens Undulatifolia “Ripple Jade”
- 12. Zanthoxylum Odorum
A List of Plants Similar to Baby Tears
Soleirolia Soleirolii is a great ornamental plant with small leaves and a carpet-like effect, ready to wow everyone that sees it for the first time. Plant lovers all across the world consider it quite remarkable because of its foliage density and strong stems.
Since it is relatively easy to take care of, there is no wonder why many people are looking for alternative choices when it comes to this plant.
Whether you want to add the same mat effect close to your office indoors or in your garden, there are 12 alternative choices for you. Keep in mind that there might be some mild differences in terms of leaf and stem shape, the dramatic effect is the same.
Let’s discover and explore a detailed list of plants that share the same carpet-like look, with all the right tips for their maintenance, so you can decide which one is the best for you and your lifestyle!
1. Sedum Album “Coral Carpet”
A beautiful perennial plant with tiny red-green-toned leaves and elegant white star-shaped flowers that grow on top. It is the number one plant that people confuse with the baby tears, primarily because of their leaves and how close the mat effect they create is.
If you’re looking for an alternative to baby tears that are pretty hardy when it comes to their maintenance, this is the right plant for you. All it needs is a sunny spot and a well-draining cactus soil mix.
2. Pilea Depressa “Tiny Tears”
Pilea Depressa can trick even the most experienced professionals sometimes. The plant has the same tiny green leaves, creating a beautiful mat-like effect when it reaches its adult stage.
You can grow it both indoors and outdoors, in spaces with bright indirect light. They can become quite fussy regarding their soil mix since they like to have good drainage close to their roots.
Once you become familiar with its watering needs, the growth will surprise you(stick the finger in the soil and watch if it is still moist or not. This will help you control the water better). Since the plant comes from the tropics, make sure to offer it some good humidity and don’t let it close to the air conditioner.
3. Ficus Pumila
Looking for that magic green carpet that will decorate a wall outside? The climbing fig won’t disappoint you since it has everything: the similarity to baby tears, the thick green leaves, and the sturdiness that all ficus plants have.
It can grow up to 1.5-2 inches and is sturdy. You will only need to water it when the soil is about to dry since it is very sensitive to root rot.
It also likes high humidity levels. By the way, a coconut coir soil mix will give it good air circulation near the roots. Note that you might have some hard time during the winter (brown leaves), but it recovers quickly once the temperature is high again.
4. Hemianthus Micranthemoides “Pearl Grass”
You might have seen Hemianthus in the aquariums or heard an aquarium lover talk about it. Pearl grass is a hydrophilic perennial shrub (it loves being close to the water). It provides a fluffy, soft mat effect with its leaves that happen to look like small tiny flowers.
The only downfall to this plant is its regular maintenance: since it has short stems to its leaves, it needs regular trimming and a good watering schedule if you want to keep it lush and healthy.
The trimming helps keep it symmetrical and rich, while the frequent watering will give it a nice vibrant color. Place it in a sunny spot outside for best results, and don’t forget to plant it vertically, so it can follow its natural flow.
5. Glossostigma Elatinoides “Glosso”
Another plant close to the heart for aquarium lovers, Glosso, is the plant that promises to give you lush green carpet-like views with its growth since it is an incredible grower. It works well in spots out in the garden that needs adequate coverage- it doesn’t grow extraordinarily tall and loves to get lots of sunshine.
Lack of light will cause the plant to grow poorly, and it will lose its vivid green color. It will need thorough watering once the soil is dry. Consider planting Glosso at least 1.5-2 inches apart away from any other plants in the garden, this will give the plant a chance to grow quickly.
6. Irish Moss “Sea Moss”
You will meet many people that like to refer to the Sea Moss as Baby Tears. The confusion comes mainly from the shape of the leaves, but it goes away once the plant blooms and the purple flowers grow. You can plant it outdoors in spots that see the sun for 4-6 hours daily. With thorough watering, once the soil is about to dry, it will grow and spread all over in no time!
A general-purpose soil mix with sufficient drainage will do wonders since it doesn’t like to spend that much time close to the water. It tends to get some browning on the leaves if you water it way more than you should, so be extra careful.
7. Portulaca Grandiflora “Moss Rose”
Once you see this plant at an early stage of its life, you will notice that the leaves look exactly like the ones the Soleirolia has. The leaves get a bit pointy as it grows bigger, but they never fail to provide this evergreen carpet. The perfect addition?
The colorful small flowers that grow every spring and summer (they come in many colors) on top of the leaves. Portulaca is a very sturdy plant that likes a sunny spot and monitored watering since it is sensitive to root rot.
8. Muehlenbeckia Complexa
These tiny circular leaves can fool anybody… until you see the gorgeous star-shaped white flowers on top. What is the difference with Baby tears? The Muehlenbeckia flowers are way bigger, and they have a similar smell to the gardenia and the jasmine.
The plant is a vining one, and it grows during spring. In the summer, the heat and the high humidity help it grow bigger, all the way towards the fall season.
Muehlenbeckia loves the sun and a general-purpose soil mix. When it comes to watering, it is not fussy or hard to maintain since it only needs water when the soil is about to dry.
Avoid placing it in shady spots since the leaves will start to lose the carpet-like effect, and the flowers won’t have the great smell they should be having.
When the plant reaches at least 39 inches in height, give it some support by using a stake and some garden wire.
9. Gazania Rigens / Spledens (Treasure Flower)
Gazania has green, lush leaves that, in the Rigens and Spledens variety, can be either a bit point or circular. Once it reaches the adult stage, it can grow big beautiful flowers in white, orange, or yellow color. It doesn’t grow tall, reaching a total height of 4- 5 inches.
It will need a sunny spot outside, preferably on the ground – along with some good trimming and removal of the dead leaves and flowers now and then. It doesn’t have any particular needs when it comes to water; just watch the soil and water closely only when the soil seems dry.
10. Oenothera Speciosa (Showy Evening Primrose)
The Oenothera plant varieties usually have long pointy leaves, except for one: the Speciosa one. The leaves are small and circular and form a dense carpet look. During spring and summer, you will notice soft pink-purple or white flowers that are sturdy toward the wind, even when they seem sensitive.
Oenothera can be placed in planters or planted in the soil directly, preferably outside in a spot that gets 4-5 hours of sun every day. Only water when the soil is about to dry since the roots are quite sensitive.
The plant will thank you if you offer some distance from the other plants since it provides good aeration of the leaves, and it can use the extra space to grow the lush green carpet it promises to offer you.
11. Crassula Arborescens Undulatifolia “Ripple Jade”
It is a great alternative, especially if you like to grow plants that don’t like lots of water and just need to stay in the sun and enjoy it. With this type of Crassula, you can enjoy some peace of mind.
Just find a sunny spot and prepare for it a good cactus mix- the plant will handle the rest. It will need some pruning every fall or at the beginning of spring so it can keep its carpet-like effect.
12. Zanthoxylum Odorum
Unlike the other Zanthoxylum varieties, the Odorum one remains short (close to 6 inches tops), but it manages to create a carpet-like effect as it grows. It is a perennial shrub that thrives in shady spots since the glossy leaves can get scorched by the sun relatively easily.
You will only have to water it once the soil is about to dry and prune it at the beginning of spring to maintain the effect it offers. If you place it in a shady spot and you see it wilting a bit, it means that the sun is bothering it- just move it to a shadier place. It is mainly the reason this plant wilts and seems droopy.
This list had the goal of keeping you informed on the plants that look similar to Baby Tears, and we hope it helped you choose the one that matches your lifestyle! You can select a Zanthoxylum or an Irish Moss if you have a pretty busy schedule.
If you are busy but you have a goal to spend some time in the garden, you can select a Pilea or a Ficus Pumila and a Sedum. If you are a dedicated plant lover, you can choose a Glosso, a Hemianthus, or a Muehlenbeckia. Which plant do you think suits you the best?
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