The Never Never plants have the scientific name Ctenanthe and are native to the Brazilian rainforest. When correctly cared for, this plant looks beautiful as it’s a unique evergreen that will add character to your home. It’s also a great choice if you’re searching for a non-toxic tropical plant.
Many people find caring for a tropical plant a challenge. To grow a thriving plant, you’ll need to create a hospitable environment. Let’s look at the growing conditions and care requirements for a never never plant.
What is a never never plant?
The Ctenanthe, comes from the Marantacea family and is commonly referred to as a never never plant or the Brazilian Snow Plant. It has beautiful foliage, which is green and silver.
These plants have spear-shaped leaves and a striped appearance that looks exotic. As the plant matures, leaves develop the undersides turn an attractive maroon color.
These flowering plants are native to tropical and subtropical regions of Brazil and Costa Rica. They are commonly grown as a houseplant and can be moved outdoors in the summer months in the right climate. Just remember to bring your plant indoors before the fall.
The Never Never plant is fast-growing and can get relatively large, reaching up to seven feet in size at maturity. Rather than getting tall, these plants spread horizontally.
Most plants don’t get taller than 18 inches. Their leaves can also get very large, reaching 16 inches in length. How big your plant gets will depend on the size of the pot it’s growing in. If you want to keep your plant small so it doesn’t take over your house, you can grow it in a smaller container.
How to care for a Never Never Plant
The never never plant is relatively easy to care for, but you’ll need to recreate tropical conditions. Getting the soil, watering, humidity, temperature, and sunlight right is a must. Here are some tips to help you grow a thriving never never plant:
It’s crucial to get the lighting right if your never never plant is to thrive. Place your plant in bright indirect sunlight. In its natural rainforest habitat, the Never Never plant grows underneath the forest canopy and receives indirect light. Don’t leave your never never plant in full sun as this will affect the plant’s beauty and could even cause the plant’s leaves to burn.
If your plant doesn’t receive enough light new leaves will be a dark green rather than silver and green. Overexposure to sunlight, on the other hand, can cause the plant’s leaves to fade.
If you have a windowsill in your home that’s in partial shade due to outdoor trees or buildings, this is the perfect place to grow a never never plant. Only place your plant on a windowsill that’s in partial shade as it will suffer if the hots sun’s UV rays are shining on its foliage. Plants can get sunburned even through glass. In most areas, an East facing windowsill is the best place to keep your plant.
Never Never plants are relatively tolerant when it comes to moisture in the soil. They prefer medium moisture, and the soil should never be left to dry out entirely. It’s best to let the topsoil dry out and then water your plant thoroughly.
You can give your plant a good soak by watering it until the water begins to drain out the pot’s drainage holes. You may like to move your plant into the sink before doing this.
Only soak your plant in this way once the soil has dried out entirely, or you’ll risk overwatering your never never plant. Overwatering will result in root rot which could prove to be fatal to your plant. It’s best to water your houseplants with collected rainwater where possible. Never Never plants are very sensitive, and the tips of their leave will start to turn brown if you water them with highly chlorinated tap water. They can also be affected by fluoride in the water.
Many people think that never never plants should be kept at high temperatures. The truth is that although they are rainforests natives, they can thrive in cooler places. Your plant will do well in temperatures of between 55°F and 85°F. In the right climate, you can even grow a never never plant outdoors. Be careful not to leave your plant outside during the winter if there’s likely to be frost.
Soil And Fertilizer
The Never Never plant should be potted in soil that’s well-draining to prevent it from becoming waterlogged. You can use pre-mixed soil that’s specially designed for tropical houseplants. Alternatively, a standard houseplant soil with some perlite mixed in will work well.
After repotting your plant, you should wait at least six weeks before providing fertilizer. This will allow the root system to grow and become more established. Water-soluble fertilizers that are diluted to half the recommended strength work well for never never plants. You can apply fertilizer every month throughout the growing season.
Common Pests and Diseases
The Never Never plant is relatively resistant when it comes to insect pests and diseases. They can be affected by insects such as mealybugs, spider mites, and thrips, and these are more of a problem in some areas than others.
You can identify a mealybug infestation by the sticky, white residue that the insects leave on the plant’s leaves. Spider mites use the plant to have leaves that are turning yellow and look blotchy. Insects can be treated using an insecticidal spray.
A mold called Botrytis can affect the Never Never plant if there’s too much humidity or your plant has been overwatered. This common fungus can be avoided by reducing humidity levels and watering your plant correctly.
The never never plant is a unique tropical species with beautiful silver and green leaves. It’s pretty easy to grow and care for, providing you get the light, temperature, and watering requirements right. These plants can grow relatively large and can be moved outdoors in the spring and summer months. Ensure you bring your plant inside before the temperature drops.