This week we are going to talk about this champion of a low-light houseplant. I was inspired by a fun and strange email I received, so I decided that it would be a great topic to talk about. Sansevieria trifasciata 'Snake Plants' or 'Mother-In-laws Tongue' are upright indoor houseplants with long knife-life leaves.
Snake Plants Wants & Needs
The plants are one of the easiest houseplants to take care of and are an excellent starter houseplant. Give one of these as a housewarming present to a friend and they will be thrilled with its indestructible nature. Their upright growth habit makes them excellent for high-traffic spots, dark corners and office spaces that are small. Depending on the variety they can grow to a height of 4' which definitely makes them a statement plant.
Snake Plants like low-light conditions away from direct sunlight. Additionally, they do not require frequent watering, so let the soil dry out between watering especially during the winter when they aren't growing. Fertilize your Snake Plant during the growing season with a liquid fertilizer like Schultz Houseplant food. Always follow the package instructions.
Even better, Snake Plants don't mind being root-bound and oftentimes you see them for sale in plastic pots that are slightly deformed. It is an indication that they need repotting, but they are hardy enough to withstand it.
Like I mentioned above, these plants come in a variety of colours, shapes, and sizes. Here we are going to discuss some of the beautiful types available.
Sansevieria trifasciata 'Laurentii'
This variety is going to be the most common Snake Plant that you find in most garden centres. With their mottled green leaves with bright yellow outline, it highlights their straight upright growth habit. They are available in 4" all the way up to 10" pot sizes, with a typical height of 3'-4' in the largest sized pots.
Because they need to be watered infrequently, they are an excellent plant to have in decorative baskets such as these woven ones or belly baskets for sale in our store.
Sansevieria trifasciata 'Black Coral'
This variety of Snake Plant has unique colouration which is a matte silvery-green accented with almost black zebra stripes.
This variety also grows to a larger size of 3'-4'.
If you tend to overwater your plants, choose a pot with a drainage hole and line the bottom with rocks to improve the drainage. If Snake Plants are left soaking in water they will get root rot.
Sansevieria hahnii 'Dwarf Snake Plants' or 'Birds Nest Snake Plants'
These flat little Snake Plants grow in a flatter habit than their upright cousins. Some of them come variegated like the Laurentii, while others are a solid green. I like to group them in sets of three for interest. Another way to enjoy them would be as a plant at your desk. Their compact nature means they won't take up a lot of real estate in your workspace.
These unique Snake Plants have round succulent leaves which are stripped similarly to the 'Black Coral'. They come in a few varieties such as the 'Starfish' (left & centre image) and an upright variety which is sometimes braided for added interest.
Sayuri are one of the least common Snake Plants we get in. With their stunning striped leaves which are light green, silvery-white they truly stand out. They have a slightly less rigid growth habit and their leaves can spill over a little. Like their cousins 'Laurentii' and 'Black Coral' these beautiful plants are between 3' and 4' when we sell them in-store, so you don't have to wait for them to get large to make a statement.
There are over 70 different types of Snake Plants on the market, so we truly did just scratch the surface. But if you are looking for a hardy, beginner-friendly houseplant, these are your best bet!
By Heather Youl