How to propagate Fittonia (Nerve Plant)? Stem cutting

One of the easiest methods for Fittonia propagation is by using stem cuttings.  This article explains how to do it.

How to propagate Fittonia (Nerve Plant)? Stem cutting


  1. Plastic cups
  2. One Plastic Ziploc bag
  3. Houseplant soil
  4. Spoon (or shovel), fork, sprayer
  5. Scissors or Trimming shears
  6. Tissue paper (or cloth) for cleaning


Propagating Fittonia
  1. Cut the Fittonia stems, selecting stems with 4 to 5 leaves.
  2. Put some houseplant soil into the two plastic cups.  The reason to use clear plastic cups is - to allow you to see the root development clearly.
  3. Place the cut-stems about an inch down into the soil, and then pack the soil around the base of the stem.
  4. Water the cuttings, place them into a plastic ziploc bag, and then spray them with water.
  5. Blow air into the bag to expand it so that the plants have room to grow. Once the air has been blown into the bags.  Close the bags and place them on the top of a storage cabinet, which is about a foot below the fluorescent lighting fixture.

Every couple of days, spray more water, blow air into the bag, and reseal it.


May I know why ziplock bag is required? Can I just leave it in the open? How long does it take to see growth?

Ziplock is required to maintain humidity until it forms roots else the plant n leaves wilt. It takes about 10 days to 14 days to form root.

Did you add drainage holes? I've seen it done with them and without, so just wondering if you add the holes.

No, I did not add any drainage holes this time. I will have to try that with the next batch of Fittonia that I propagate. Thank you for the advice!

I placed my Fittonia in ziplock bag for about 3 weeks. I saw 3 young shoots. I bring it out of bag but it go limp again. May I ask if you have this experience? Or know what went wrong?

Plants, much like people, need some time to adjust to new surroundings. Instead of just taking the bag off all at once. Do one of the following methods to let the plant adapt to the surroundings gradually.

Method 1:

Punch a few holes in the bag (using a hole-punch/etc) and gradually bringing in the humidity.

Method 2:

  1. Remove the plants from the bag for a short period of time (30 mins - 1 hour for the first time or two). Then place the plants back in the bag. 
  2. Do this every day, gradually increasing the amount of time spent out of the bag until eventually removing the bag all together. 

How to root Fittonia?
How to propagate Nerve Plant? Stem-cutting Fittonia

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