Plant Profile: Sansevieria (Mother in Law’s Tongue)
Sansevieria (AKA Mother in Law’s Tongue / Snake Plant)
If there ever was a perfect house plant, the Sansevieria would have to be one of the front runners. This little beauty grows just about anywhere, as it can tolerate low light levels (perfect for apartment dwellers), it can survive drought and has few insect problems. It’s sword like foliage always looks striking, green and its architectural shape will make an impact in any space.
The good news doesn’t end there, according to the NASA Clean Air Study, the Sansevieria has amazing air-purifying qualities, removing four of the five commonly found toxins found in our spaces. Its even great in your bedroom as it coverts CO2 (carbon dioxide) to O2 (oxygen) at night.
Sansevieria is also a great impact plant in a shady part of the garden, or in atriums and courtyards. Mass plant for maximum impact.
Position: Low to moderate light requirements. Can even take a fair bit of sun outside – just not all day.
Water: Low requirements in warm weather, less during winter.
Soil: Well drained, light mix. Let the soil drain between watering.
Habit: Strong architectural plant, small to medium sized upright leaves. Leaves will contain green and yellow colouring depending on the variety and colours will vary in intensity depending on light exposure. The foliage can be sharp, take care if pets and children are around.
Propagating your Sansevieria is super easy. Take a cutting of a leaf and place in a vase of water in an indirectly lit, bright area. After a while (the amount of time can vary wildly – so be patient), fine roots should appear at the base of your cutting. Once these have appeared you are ready to pop it in a free draining potting mix. You’ll also find that your Sansevieria will multiply over time and fill out any container or garden bed. If you want to thin them out, the easiest way is to separate the plants manually. With this method you can skip the vase of water. Just divide with garden tools and plant in new location. Propagation is best done in spring when the plant is waking from it’s winter snooze!