Nerve plants (Fittonia) are compact tropical houseplants that are perfect for terrariums or humid bathrooms. Despite their small size, nerve plants may significantly impact the feng shui energy within your home. Nerve plants can be used to increase positive energy as long as they have the conditions they need. In this article, we’ll explain where to position nerve plants in your home for optimal care and feng shui benefits.
- Where to Position Nerve Plants in the Home – The Essentials
- About Nerve Plants
- Nerve Plants and Feng Shui
- Where to Position Nerve Plants in the Home
- Where NOT to Place Nerve Plants in the Home
- Where to Position Nerve Plants Outdoors
- Essential Nerve Plant Care Considerations
- Where to Position Nerve Plants FAQs
- Wrapping Up
Where to Position Nerve Plants in the Home – The Essentials
As living organisms, nerve plants are strongly linked to the Wood element and represent growth and emotional support. According to the Bagua map, nerve plants suit eastern and southeastern areas of your home in Feng Shui practices. For optimal plant care, nerve plants should be positioned somewhere warm and humid with indirect or filtered light throughout the day.
About Nerve Plants
Nerve plants are evergreen perennials from the Fittonia genus, which belongs to the acanthus family (Acanthaceae). The genus is named after 19th Century botanical writers Elizabeth and Sara Fitton.
Due to the colors and patterns on their leaves, nerve plants are also known as mosaic plants. Each dark green leaf is covered with vibrant pink, red, or white veins. Nerve plants produce tiny white flowers in their native habitats but rarely bloom when grown indoors.
These plants hail from the tropical rainforests of Peru and other parts of South America, where they grow in the dappled light of the forest floor. Nerve plants grow up to 6 inches tall but can spread for approximately 12 to 18 inches and can live for years with proper care. These plants also offer an array of ornamental uses and benefits.
Nerve Plants and Feng Shui
Although nerve plants don’t have any specific symbolism or meaning, they can still be used in feng shui. Nerve plants can be used to forge a connection to nature and the energy produced by living things.
Nerve plants can also be used to dispel the negative energy or chi that collects in empty spaces. They can also purify the air by absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen. Like many houseplants, nerve plants can also absorb potentially harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
Nerve plants also have a strong connection to the Wood element. Five Elements Theory (Wu Xing) is an integral part of feng shui. Each element – Earth, Fire, Metal, Water, and Wood – has different qualities and associations.
The Wood element represents growth, rebirth, renewal, and emotional support. The Wood element is most potent in the eastern or southeastern areas of your home. Placing nerve plants in these areas helps increase your connection to the Wood element.
Where to Position Nerve Plants in the Home
According to the Bagua Map
One of the main ways of organizing the energy or chi in your home is by using the Bagua map. This tool divides a room or home into nine separate zones that each influence different aspects of our lives. The nine zones of the Bagua map and their corresponding qualities and elements are:
- East = Family (Zhen) – Wood
- Southeast = Prosperity and Wealth (Xun) – Wood
- South = Fame and Reputation (Li) – Fire
- Southwest = Relationships (Kun) – Earth
- West = Children (Dui) – Metal
- Center = Health (Tai Qi) – Earth
- Northwest = Helpful People (Qian) – Metal
- North = Career (Kan) – Water
- Northeast = Knowledge (Gen) – Earth
Because of their link to the Wood element, nerve plants should be placed in your home’s eastern or southeastern areas. The Wood element is strongest in these areas, boosting its positive effects.
The eastern zone of the Bagua map is linked to family, corresponding with the association between Wood and emotional support. The southeast is associated with prosperity, which ties in with the Wood element due to its link with growth. So, placing a nerve plant in either of these areas of the Bagua map may benefit your prosperity or family life.
Living organisms such as houseplants are beneficial in feng shui because they generate positive energy. Nerve plants can also help dispel the negative energy collected in empty spaces or sharp corners.
According to Care Requirements
When deciding where to place nerve plants in your home, you also need to consider their care requirements. These tropical houseplants need warm, humid conditions to thrive indoors.
Nerve plants can tolerate various light exposure levels but do best when given filtered light through blinds or curtains. Nerve plants can also grow in areas with bright, indirect light from east-facing windows. However, they should be placed approximately 3 feet away from the window.
Nerve plants can also grow in north-facing rooms that provide partial shade. Although nerve plants can briefly tolerate low-light conditions, they will experience stunted growth if they don’t receive enough light.
Getting the right temperature and humidity levels is the most crucial aspect of caring for nerve plants. Nerve plants need stable temperatures ranging from 60 to 80ºF (15.5 to 26.5ºC). Nerve plants also require high humidity levels ranging from 60 to 90%.
Bathrooms are ideal locations for nerve plants because they provide humid, warm conditions. If you can’t put nerve plants in your bathroom, then use humidifiers or pebble trays to maintain high humidity. You can also regularly mist the leaves.
Where NOT to Place Nerve Plants in the Home
According to Five Elements Theory, different elements can negatively impact each other. This makes some areas of your home unsuitable for nerve plants.
The Wood element is weakened by Fire, which is strongest in southern areas of the Bagua map. Wood also clashes with Metal, which governs your home’s western and northwestern parts. Avoid placing nerve plants in these areas, as this can hamper the Wood element energy you’re attempting to cultivate.
Avoid putting nerve plants in places that experience cold or dry drafts. Drafts are produced by air vents, open windows, and radiators. Drafts can lower both the temperature and humidity levels around nerve plants, which may cause severe issues for the plant.
Keep nerve plants away from areas of bright, direct sunlight, especially during the afternoon. Too much direct sunlight can scorch and damage your nerve plant’s foliage. Leaving nerve plants in low-light areas can also cause problems such as weak growth or loss of color.
Where to Position Nerve Plants Outdoors
Nerve plants require warm, humid conditions and aren’t suitable for growing outdoors in most parts of the United States. However, you can grow nerve plants as ground cover plants outside in USDA Zones 11 to 12. To protect nerve plants from the intense afternoon sun, grow them in shaded areas.
Essential Nerve Plant Care Considerations
As mentioned, nerve plants need stable, warm temperatures of approximately 60 to 80ºF (15.5 to 26.5ºC). Nerve plants also need around 60 to 90% humidity. Nerve plants also require bright, indirect light, filtered light, or partial shade from east-facing or north-facing windows.
During spring and summer, water nerve plants 3 or 4 times a week or whenever the top inch of soil feels dry. Reduce watering to once or twice a week during the winter. Nerve plants need neutral to slightly acidic, well-draining soils that can still hold some moisture.
Feed nerve plants weekly during spring and summer with a diluted dose of fertilizer. Nerve plants grow moderately, so repot them every year or two during the spring. It’s also prudent to stay on top of common nerve plant pests and diseases.
Whilst nerve plants aren’t considered toxic or poisonous to pets and humans, it’s prudent to wear a pair of protective gloves during any form of plant care as they do have tiny hairs on their stems that may cause mild irritation.
Where to Position Nerve Plants FAQs:
A warm, humid bathroom is the best room for a nerve plant, especially if it has an east-facing window.
How Far Away From a Window Should a Nerve Plant Be?
Nerve plants should be placed approximately 3 feet away from a window to protect them against direct sunlight.
Can I Put My Nerve Plant In a Corner?
Putting nerve plants in corners helps dispel negative energy and produces positive energy.
Can Nerve Plants Thrive In Low-Light Environments?
Nerve plants can tolerate low-light environments for short periods but still need some indirect or filtered sunlight.
Can Nerve Plants Tolerate Drafts?
Nerve plants cannot tolerate drafts as this lowers temperatures and humidity levels. Keep nerve plants away from drafty areas.
Nerve plants make excellent tropical houseplants for your home and can even improve feng shui. According to the Bagua map, nerve plants work best in eastern or southeastern areas that are strongly associated with the Wood element. Nerve plants thrive in warm, humid areas that receive bright, indirect light, filtered light, or partial shade.
Edd is a budding content writer and gardener living in the United Kingdom. He has a bachelor's degree in Creative and Professional Writing and has written for several gardening publications online. He is passionate about nature and sustainability with a focus on gardening and wildlife.
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