How To Take Care of The Ctenanthe Setosa Plant

Ctenanthe Setosa

The Ctenanthe Setosa Plant, also known as the Never Never, is an evergreen plant with variegated, unique foliage that can add liveliness and color to your home. Some people refer to it as the Prayer Plant because of the tendency of its leaves to close at night, resembling playing hands. Successfully growing a tropical plant native to the Brazil rainforest in your home might seem challenging. However, knowing what the plant needs to thrive can make it relatively easy. Here is a look at how to take care of the Ctenanthe Setosa plant.


Ctenanthe Setosa plant grows best in intense, indirect light. According to The Spruce, the plant grows under the Brazilian rainforest canopy, where it grows on filtered or indirect light. Therefore, it’s best to place the plant in an area with bright but indirect light. Nevertheless, the plant might tolerate some shade, but inadequate light might cause loss of variegation in leaves. On the other hand, if you give the plant too much light, the leaf’s colors might start fading.


Ctenanthe Setosa does best in temperatures between 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Lower temperatures can damage the plant’s leaves. Ctenanthe Setosa does not tolerate temperatures below 55 degrees Fahrenheit (12 degrees Celsius), so you should not leave the plant outdoors during frosty, cold winters. Even indoors during winter, your plant can be in trouble if you leave it in a place with temperature fluctuations or near a cold window.


While the Ctenanthe Setosa plant is not selective on the quality of its substrate, it grows well in peat-based, well-drained, indoor-potting soil. A well-draining potting mix helps counter any overwatering problems and prevents excess water from sitting at the plant roots. You can use any formulated mix for tropical plants or mix your soil with perlite, peat, bark, or sand.


It’s recommended to water the Ctenanthe Setosa plant frequently during the growing period. You should always keep the soil moist but ensure all the water drains. Never leave your plant to sit in water. In the winter season, decrease the watering frequency and leave the topsoil to become a bit dry before watering again.


Ctenanthe Setosa is a rainforest plant that loves high humidity environments. This can be a problem, particularly when indoor heating is on in winter. Place the Ctenanthe Setosa on a pebble tray filled with water to increase the humidity levels around the plant. However, ensure the plant is not sitting in the water but on the pebbles. You can also use a humidifier or mist the plant.


Ctenanthe Setosa is a foliage plant; hence needs to be fed with some fertilizer for the best results. It’s recommended to fertilize your plant with a half-diluted liquid fertilizer every two weeks during the growing seasons. You don’t need to apply fertilizer during winter and fall.

Ctenanthe Setosa Propagation

Ctenanthe Setosa is propagated through offsets or stem cuttings. Both these methods create a clone of the mother plant.

Offsets Propagation

Dividing the basal offsets into their pot will increase the number of plants in your collection and prevent the process of becoming pot-bound. The appropriate time to divide the offsets is when the pup exceeds the height of 20cm.

1. Remove the dirt to enhance access to the base of the pup.

2. Cut several stems with at least two root strands at the base using a clean pair of scissors or secateurs.

3. Put the offset in an idea-sized pot with good drainage and houseplant compost. The suitable setting should have strong indirect light and temps above 59°F (15 °C).

4. Maintain the soil relatively moist, leaving the top third to dry out between the hydrations.

5. After one to two months, treat it like a mature plant by following the above-stated care instructions.

Stem Cuttings Propagation

To propagate Ctenanthe Setosa via stem cuttings, find a five-inch long cutting derived from a healthy stem with about four leaves.

1. Cut the stem below a leaf node using a sterilized, sharp cutting instrument.

2. Eliminate leaves on the bottom half of the stem and soak in the rooting hormone.

3. Put potting soil and drainage holes with the stem cutting in a 4-inch container.

4. Cover the stem with a transparent plastic bag to maintain humidity and moisture. Also, have some small openings at the top of the plant to enable it to breathe.

5. Keep the soil moist for several weeks, and then tug on the cutting to check whether the roots have developed. If roots are developing, remove the plastic to allow them to grow more.

6. Transfer the roots to a larger container when well established and firm.


You should repot your Ctenanthe Setosa plant to a bigger pot every two years to provide more space for the roots outgrowing the current pot. A terracotta pot with drainage holes can provide a decorative pot choice for your plant. This should be done in the spring when the plant grows actively.

Pest And Diseases

Ctenanthe Setosa plant is not commonly affected by any serious disease or pest. However, according to the Smart Garden Guide, watch out for spider mites, mealy bugs, and aphids. You can use insecticidal soap to treat spider mites.

Is Ctenanthe Setosa Plant Toxic?

Ctenanthe Setosa is nontoxic and nonpoisonous to animals or humans. as a result, ingesting it will provide no toxic danger. According to Bloomscape, the beautiful plant is pet-safe and a suitable choice if you have children or pets in your home. But in rare cases, individual allergic reactions can happen, although they are highly considered to be minor at worst.

Bottom Line

Ultimately, the Ctenanthe Setosa is a perfect and beautiful plant whether you are looking for a houseplant or plan to use it as a cover plant. If you know its requirements, particularly when it comes to light exposure, humidity, and watering, you will easily grow it successfully. Hopefully, you now know how to care for the Ctenanthe Setosa plant. Ensure you don’t deprive the plant of adequate indirect light, avoid overwatering it, don’t over-fertilize, and use a well-draining soil mix, and your Ctenanthe Setosa will thrive best.

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