Nerve plants (Fittonia sp.) are popular indoor plants with vividly colourful foliage.
There is a wide variety of nerve plants available, some having green leaves with cream or white veins, others with deep pink markings and some with stunning predominantly white foliage. They are perfect plants for small spaces, only reaching around 15 cm tall.
They are native to humid to tropical forests in South America, so are well suited to growing in a terrarium where their vibrant foliage looks fantastic when grown together with green leafy plants such as ferns.
Nerve plants will do best when grown in a warm, well-lit spot that is protected from direct sunlight and draughts.
Keep the potting mix consistently slightly moist. Regularly check the moisture levels in the potting mix by inserting your finger into the top few centimetres. If it feels dry and dusty, water the plant. If it’s still moist, leave watering for a few days. Nerve plants like to be kept moist but not waterlogged.
During hot or dry weather, nerve plants will appreciate their foliage being misted with water. You can also sit the pot on a saucer of water that’s filled with pebbles (so the base of the pot isn’t sitting in water) and regularly add water to the saucer. This helps to create a more humid environment around these rainforest loving plants.
For more compact, bushier plants, regularly pinch out the stem tips.
How To Propagate:
You can use longer pieces of stems (around 10 cm long) that contain nodes (a bump on the stem), as cuttings to grow more plants.
Remove all but the top set of leaves, dip stem ends into Yates Clonex® Purple Rooting Hormone Gel and gently insert the cut end into a pot filled with moist Yates Seed Raising Mix. Place the pot in a warm protected spot (a Yates Mini Greenhouse is ideal), keep the mix moist and roots should form within a few weeks. Then the new nerve plants can be planted into their own small pots to grow.