Snake Plant Care
Snake plants – native to equatorial West Africa – are an admirable supplement to your home’s indoor or outdoor locations. There are numerous types of snake plants with the more common type, Sansevieria trifasciata, having flat to lightly curled dark green leaves and growing up to two-feet tall.
These pointed, green, and fascinating plants come in over 70 varieties.
They can be tall or small, have horizontal or curled vegetation, and boast variegation in dim greenish, light green, silver, yellow, or white hues.
If you’re infamous for overlooking houseplants, or you are a new plant parent or wish to get something that’s little upkeep, look at including a snake plant in your assortment.
A quick tip: Other names for snake plants: mother-in-law’s tongue, devil’s tongue, or St. George’s sword. Its horticultural name is Dracaena trifasciata, but you may likewise see it pointed out by its old moniker Sansevieria trifasciata or Sansevieria cylindrica.
Snake Plant Benefits
Are you getting trouble falling asleep at night? Place one in your bedroom all the time or during the evening and overnight later observe what happens! Why in the bedroom, you inquire?
The answer: This plant turns CO2 into oxygen at night and enhances air quality overall. Just three of them throughout the home can do the thing. Snake Plant is one of barely a dozen air purifying plants approved by NASA space experts.
Their Clean Air research indicated that snake plants are one of the few plants that transform carbon dioxide into oxygen at night, causing them ideal for placing in your bedroom.
Most alternative plants consume oxygen at night, which is why they are not suggested to be held in your sleeping zone.
If there’s one sentence to retain in mind here, it is. Snake Plant supports oxygen for better dreams! Its benefits extend even further. Do you sneeze a lot, or do your eyes get dehydrated?
Snake Plant includes antioxidants that help preserve eye irritants, respiratory complications, and headaches by separating over 85% of toxic contaminations present in the air from diverse environmental origins.
The long and the brief of it is this. A Snake Plant brings health benefits for long life, endurance, and snug sleep.
Is Snake Plant only effective at night? Not at all! Research has indicated that including them in industrialized and office ecosystems can considerably enhance the air quality, encouraging personnel to function efficiently throughout the day.
They claimed the Paharpur Business Centre of New Delhi was the healthiest construction in that city after a survey established it had many snake plants all over the building.
It has further proved snake Plant cut energy expenditure by cutting ventilation demands because of their unique capacity to promote air quality in any industry or living space.
How To Propagate Snake Plant
- There are three main methods that you can use to create a new snake plant from an existing one.
- Using suitable potting soil and planter are keys to successful propagation.
- Ground cinnamon — a natural anti-fungal — can speed up the healing of cuttings.
Snake plants (Dracaena trifasciata) are renowned for their hardy, nearly indestructible nature and slithering, swordlike leaves.
This popular houseplant can thrive in light conditions, with little water, and is easy to propagate.
A quick tip: While snake plants are known to be fairly pest resistant, pros recommend inspecting for insects or fungus before starting the propagation process since they can carry into the new plant.
What you need
- Gardening shears or serrated knife
- Potting soil, preferably a cactus/succulent mix
- A glass of ambient temperature water or a small pot with a drainage hole (preferably terra cotta)
Use the right materials
Choosing the correct soil is critical in successfully propagating and growing a new snake plant.
Pros agree on free-draining soil, such as a cactus/succulent mix and adding perlite. You want to make sure the soil has plenty of aeration and drainage and only water the plants when the top two to three inches of soil feels dry.
As for picking the right pot, it is best to use a terra cotta pot with a drainage hole. They are great for plants that are at extreme risk of being overwatered.
They help wick away moisture and help prevent a variety of issues that come with too much water, like root rot.
Method 1: Rhizome division
If you’re looking to propagate a snake plant you already have or a friend wants to share their snake plant wealth, you can divide it by splitting the rhizomes.
These are the underground parts of the plant that look like thick roots or pieces of ginger. Pull the plant out of its pot and use a pair of sharp garden shears (or a serrated knife, if the plant is larger) to cut the mass of soil and roots in half.
Each half should have at least three rhizomes and should be healthy and green. Lastly, pot up each new plant in soil and water it until the water drains out the bottom.
With the rhizome division method, propagating in a glass of water is not necessary. This will drown their roots. You only propagate a snake plant in a glass of water when there are no roots yet.
Method 2: Rooting a leaf
Try rooting a leaf if your snake plant is blessed with plentiful, healthy leaves. Cut the stem as close to the base as possible without damaging the original plant or other leaves.
Next, place the cutting in a glass or jar of water. The leaf should be submerged by no more than an inch or two, or about 1/4 of the leaf.
Once your cutting is in the jar, place the glass away from direct sunlight or under a grow light and change the water every few days.
New roots will emerge from the bottom of the leaf within three to four weeks. Once the roots are about two inches long, pot up the new snake plant.
Method 3: Rooting a cutting
If you’re willing to take a cutting from a healthy leaf of your snake plant, you can try the third method of propagating, which is by rooting a cutting.
This is essentially the same as the second method, only it skips a step.
Plant the cutting of a leaf directly into the soil, water it, and wait for it to grow.
Caring for a snake plant after propagation
As for post-propagation care, finding the right lighting can be the difference between a stagnant snake plant and a growing, healthy one.
Although snake plants are one of the more low-light tolerant plants, that doesn’t mean this is their ideal environment.
To many people’s surprise, snake plants can actually thrive in a very sunny environment and if you’re lucky, even bloom!
A quick tip: Add ground cinnamon to the ends of your cuttings. Cinnamon helps speed up the healing process and is also a natural way to help prevent issues as it is a natural anti-fungal.
How To Tend For Snake Plants
These plants may be easy to maintain alive, but some conditions support them flourishing.
Snake plants are often referred to as the set it and forget it plant. So, if you’re the type who overlooks to water your plants, this plant will be pretty lenient if not pleased that you made so.
Their watering needs are essential. They can last for a prolonged time without regular care and still look fabulous.
Indicated that snake plants are succulents (because they collect moisture in their leaves), you must deal with it and not overuse them with constant or excessive watering.
It’s OK to give them a full watering once the soil is arid. If you water while the ground is still humid, you’ll run into complications such as root decay.
The type of soil and container you use, as well as the volume of light they take in, will also play a task in your watering schedule; in general, regard watering no fewer than every two weeks.
Eventually, don’t overlook that you may also require to modify your watering schedule with the shifting seasons. For illustration, you should cut down watering your plant to once a month during the cold months.
A quick tip: Bypass splashing water on the vegetation, possibly contributing to root deterioration or fungal diseases. “These plants are infamous for that, so do not mist them or put them near a humidifier.
Since snake plants are succulents, they go for loose and fully-draining soil. It’s suggested to adopt an all-purpose cactus potting mix.
Even if you’re applying the ideal growing medium for this plant, however, it won’t entirely flourish unless your pot has the appropriate drainage to provide excess water to pass through.
Additionally, when fertilizing your plant, make it clear to do so once a month during the cultivating season.
Don’t fertilize during the cold when most plants go asleep; it’ll stress them out and lead to more damage than good.
If living indoors, plants choose a temperature between 60 to 85 degrees. These plants can endure cooler and warmer temperature variations and deal with an infinite of humidity levels.
Average household moisture is optimal, and they also do OK if kept in your bathroom. On the other hand, if disclosed to temperatures lower than 50 degrees F, your plant may deteriorate, so make sure to avoid setting placing them close to chilly drafts.
If your plant dwells outdoors – whether in a pot or found in the ground – make sure it’s situated in a somewhat shady zone. All in all, Dracaena is highly flexible to diversified living conditions.
These evergreen perennials are probably the most lenient when it comes to lighting because they’ll do just fine even if you place them in the dimmest corner of your home. They’ll also blossom in a place that gets outdoor bright direct or ancillary light.
It’s crucial to determine the light needs of the individual plant you bring in home – some will call for more intense light to continue growing vibrant vegetation.
While these plants aren’t superb rapid growers like pothos (Epipremnum aureum) or spider plants (Chlorophytum comosum), they’ll consistently do so faster when planted in spots with higher natural light.
A quick tip: If you want to graft your snake plant outdoors, make sure to gradually accustom it before it’s disclosed to maximum direct sunlight. Its foliage may get charred by the sun if you don’t and leaves never bounce back from the burns.
Typical Snake Plant Problems
No plant parent wishes to see insect bugs, but snake plants are, sadly, susceptible to mealybugs and spider mite infections, which provokes them to diminish and drop leaves.
These plants can further produce brown spots and are sensitive to fungal issues such as southern blight and red leaf spots.
To avert this, make sure you’re not only listening to your plant but getting notice of how its living conditions are influencing it in both positive and detrimental aspects.
If you see your plant ever roots bound, don’t bother – they do better that way unless their rhizomes or roots start to tear through any cups.
Lastly, if you’re a pet holder, it’s essential to recognize that these plants are deadly to cats and dogs. They’re further not healthy for humans and should be held out of the scope of minors.
If you’re looking to split a snake plant, several easy propagation techniques are available.
For those using rhizome division or rooting a cutting, it’s crucial to use the right type of potting soil and a planter that drains to help prevent root rot.
To keep your snake plant around for years to come, repotting them every two to three years. It’s also the best time to propagate them again.