A beautiful foliage plant, the Silver Nerve Plant is a small, compact plant with extremely well-marked oval leaves with a lattice-work of creamy veining. Fittonia are evergreen perennials – but tender, so will not like being planted outdoors unless in a semi-tropical environment.
Its natural habitat is the rainforests of South America where it is happy as a ground hugging groundcover plant. More or less every shoot re-roots as they touch the ground in their ever-active quest for more space. Growing at ground level beneath the rainforest canopy suggests how they should be grown indoors.
There are two basic types of Fittonia – one having the silver lace patterned leaves - - the other having bright red or even shocking pink veins which are to be found in good garden centres or florists.
Its needs good light required but avoid direct sun. Use a well-draining enriched potting mix. This Fittonia thrives in warm humid growing conditions.
Water regularly over the growing season, and stand pot in a saucer of water or wet pebbles to increase humidity. Trim plant back to shape in spring, and pinch out any straggly growth through the year. Apply weak feed regularly throughout the growing season.
Remove older, larger leaves to allow new growth to show.
Good for: The Silver Nerve Plant is a low-growing, exquisitely marked foliage plant, ideal for planting in shallow containers on its own or in a mixed planting. It is an easy and attractive plant to grow.
Hanging pots are an ideal way in which to grow them – especially if allowed to hang down to a lower level where the attractive foliage can be view either at eye level or from above. Standing on a low pedestal is another option.
They can be planted in the confines of a large glass container such as a terrarium or old fish tank, where they will most certainly benefit from the high humidity in such confined containers.
Nothing could be simpler than taking off a few rooted stems and potting up as new plants. Alternatively softwood cutting placed in a heated propagator during the spring or late summer is also easy.
Layering in a wide pot or pan is also a productive and simple way to get new plants.
Fittonia needs high humidity. That may cause a problem in some situations. Otherwise grow without worrying about the normal aphids and mites – they seem not to be interested!
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