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Snake Plants: Easy Care Houseplants That Are As Tough As Can Be

If you want a tough houseplant, then the Snake Plant is the one for you. I grow them in my garden but they're 1 of the easiest care houseplants around. Just ignore them & they'll be fine!

Snake Plants: Easy Care Houseplants That Are As Tough As Can Be

If you want houseplants that are as tough as can be, then Snake Plants are for you.  They’re virtually indestructible, unless you of course have a heavy hand with the watering or place them in a hot, sunny window.  These plants seem to thrive on the dry air in our homes, as well as neglect. The more you ignore them, the better they do.

There are many different Sansevieria species on the market with more being introduced each year.  Sansevieria trifasciata “laurentii”, with the yellow leaf margins, is the one that I’ve seen the most often over the years. I have one growing in my garden which looks quite attractive in  a terra cotta pot.

Snake Plants: Easy Care Houseplants

My “laurentii” enjoys this spot in the garden with filtered light & afternoon shade.

You’ll see Snake Plants both in a greenhouse & in my garden:

My Snake Plants  all live outdoors and I have them growing in various spots in the garden.  I love their spiky leaves and modern, edgy feel.  They are definitely not soft, “touchy feely” plants and may not be the look for everyone.  However, if you travel a lot or just don’t want to fuss over a houseplant, then you should definitely consider these.

Here are a few care tips for you:

Water:  Easy does it.  A thorough watering every 2-4 weeks (depending on how warm your home is) is enough.

Light:  They prefer medium light but will also tolerate low light & high light. Be sure to keep them out of direct sun.

Pests:  Snake Plants are most susceptible to mealybugs followed by spider mites.

This is one of the plants in our book Keep Your Houseplants Alive, so be sure to check it out for more info on Snake Plants as well as 26 other houseplants.

Because they don’t mind dry air and low light, they are excellent office plants.  Interestingly enough, Snake Plants do well in bathrooms where the humidity tends to be much higher.  Versatile and easy care – a winning combo in my book.

Another thing which might interest you about Snake Plants, whose other common names are Mother-In-Law Tongue and Devil’s Tongue, is that they are work horses when it comes to air purification. They filter out formaldehyde and nitrogen oxide around them.  Now this is a plant on a mission!

Gorgeous snake plants are easy to care for
Nell with a snake plant

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  1. My mom bought me a snakes plant and I just wanted to know if cactus soil would be fine to use and I have some perlite for more drainage I am. Only 14 so I don’t really know that much but I have a a lot of house plants that are thriving thank you

  2. Hi Chris – Thank you for your comment! I started gardening when I was very young & have been doing it ever since. It’s a wonderful hobby, passion &/ or profession to have. Cactus & succulent mix is great for Snake Plants as they need excellent drainage. Those fleshy, tuberous roots of theirs store a lot of water. You really don’t need to add any more perlite to the succulent mix but a small amount wouldn’t hurt at all. 3 things to remember: no direct, hot sun, easy on the water (only when the plant has dried out) & don’t rush to transplant it (they like to be pot bound). Happy gardening, Nell

  3. My snake plant started to have it’s leaves curl within themselves, my pot has no holes, I wasn’t watering it often but it was by a window against my central heating which I moved away from already,the pot was hot to the touch. Will the damage be reversible or is there anything I could change? I only had this plant for couple of months given to me by a neighbor. Thanks?

  4. Hi Maribel – In my experiences with Snake Plants, I’ve found them to be very tough both indoors & out. They grow & spread by rhizomes (thick underground roots) so even if the plant is damaged, new growth will eventually appear. In spring I’d recommend you transplant it into a pot with holes because they need excellent drainage & don’t like to be wet. Nell

  5. Thanks Nell.. Now I think I have overwatered it because some leaves have turned yellow and it’s roots are mushy.. .i tripped away the damage roots put it back in the same pot and hope for the best. Hope I don’t kill it completely

  6. Hello Nell! Thank you for your website. A few of my snake plant leaves have holes in them. They holes are pretty well-defined and still have a small amount of translucent material within the hole. What is causing this and what do I do?

  7. Hi Hilary – Snake Plants are very tough but they’re very susceptible to over watering. It could be a fungal issue. Nell

  8. I recently bought a snak plant and transplanted it into a bigger pot right away. It’s growing very slowly, and doesn’t seem very happy. Should I move it into a smaller pot?

  9. Hi Joy, First I want to say thank you for your videos on the many house plants I have learned a lot form them.
    I have a question for you about one of my snake plants the (Zeylanica) type I believe its called.
    Some of the leaves are curling, what do you think is going on with it?
    Thank you

  10. Hi Susan – You’re welcome! It’s hard to say without seeing it but the cause could be too dry, too wet (leaves are mushy feeling) or thrips. Here’s a post on thrips so you can see if that’s the cause: Nell

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