Help me identify help this plant

Hi Judy,

I have this plant which was doing ok for awhile. It didn’t seem to need much watering. Anyway it was recently attacked by Mealy BugsSee a picture, learn to identify and treat Mealy Bugs, a houseplant pest that leaves sticky,white, cottony residue on houseplants. which I have eliminated but its not getting any better. All bugs are gone now but the plant is slowly dying. I’m not sure if its due to overwatering because I had to shoot a lot of water over it to kill the bugs. Now the leaves are drooping and turning black. I don’t even know what plant it is so I’m not sure how to bring it back. Please help me…

The picture was taken back in its glory days…


Hi Ida,

The center of the plant looks very dark, but from the leaves I can see on the sides, the plant looks like a Fittonia or Nerve plant. If you could send me a close up of one of the leaves I could be more definite. I think you have over watered the plant and perhaps killed some of the roots. Allow the plant to dry out until the leaves are soft and start to droop a little, then water.  These plants like warm temperatures and lots of humidity. You can read all about a Fittonia, or Nerve Plant, in the Popular HousePlant section of the website. Next time you have a pest problem try the “ green solutionIf you don't want to use a commercial chemical product to treat plant pest problems try the “Green Solution.” This is a mixture of water, alcohol, biodegradable liquid soap, and mineral oil. Always test any spray on one or two leaves to be sure it won’t damage the plant. Depending upon how severe the infestation is, you can use these ingredients in varying proportions. If there are only a few pests, dip a Q-tip in alcohol and gently swab them off. For a more widespread problem, start by using a spray of warm water mixed with a few tablespoons of biodegradable soap. If that doesn’t cure the problem, make a solution using 8oz. water & 8oz. alcohol, add two tablespoons of biodegradable soap and two tablespoons of mineral oil. Spray all areas of the plant. Use this solution on leathery leafed plants (except palms), never on fuzzy leafed plants like African Violets or Begonias. For palms, omit the alcohol from the Green Solution. Never spray a plant that’s sitting in the sun or one with very dry soil.    .” It is a non-toxic, simple to make solution that gets rid of most house plant pests. The recipe is in the Glossary of the website. You might also try a product called superthriveSuperthrive combines vitamins and hormones to encourage plant growth both above and below the soil line. It's not a plant food so it needs to be used in addition to your regular plant food; the two can be used at the same time. Just put a few drops into your watering can & that's all that's needed to improve the health & appearance of your plants. If your plants are in real trouble, add about 10 drops per 2 gallons of water. SuperThrive works best when the soil is dry.    , it does wonders for plants that are under stress. You can read about it in the Glossary also.