Sansevieria trifasciata Prain
Snake Plant, Mother-in-Law's Tongue, Mother-in-Law's Nose, Saint George's Sword, African Bowstring Hemp
Aletris hyacinthoides var. zeylanica, Dracaena trifasciata, Sansevieria craigii, Sansevieria jacquinii, Sansevieria laurentii, Sansevieria trifasciata var. laurentii, Sansevieria trifasciata var. trifasciata, Sansevieria zeylanica var. laurentii
Sansevieria trifasciata is a succulent plant with sword-shaped, erect or slightly spreading leaves that rise stiffly from a thick rhizome to form a rosette. The leaves are whitish-green with dark green bands and entire green margins. They are broadly linear, up to 3.3 feet (1 m) long, and up to 2.8 inches (7 cm) wide.
Small, fragrant, pale greenish or greenish-white flowers appear on mature plants in spring, followed by bright orange or reddish berries.
USDA hardiness zones 10a to 11b: from 30 °F (−1.1 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).
How to Grow and Care
Place Sansevierias in moderately bright or filtered light. Good locations include a spot in front of a north-facing window or front of a bright, sunny window covered by a sheer curtain. Although the plant tolerates low light, bright light brings out the colors in the leaves. However, intense light may cause the edges of the leaves to turn yellow.
Allow the soil to dry completely before watering, and then water deeply until water drips through the drainage hole. Allow the pot to drain, and then discard the water that remains in the saucer. Never let the soil become soggy, and never let the pot stand in water. Water sparingly throughout the winter. Like most succulent plants storing water in their leaves, Sansevieria rots quickly in excessively wet soil.
Place Sansevieria at average room temperature. Protect the plant from drafts and cold temperatures as it is damaged below 50 °F (10 °C).
Feed the plant once every three weeks throughout the summer. Use a general-purpose fertilizer for houseplants diluted to half the strength suggested on the container. Sansevieria is a light feeder, and too much fertilizer makes the leaves fall over.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Sansevieria.
This species is native to tropical West Africa, from Nigeria east to the Congo.
- Sansevieria trifasciata 'Golden Hahnii'
- Sansevieria trifasciata 'Hahnii'
- Sansevieria trifasciata 'Laurentii'
- Sansevieria trifasciata 'Twisted Sister'
- Back to genus Sansevieria
- Succupedia: Browse succulents by Scientific Name, Common Name, Genus, Family, USDA Hardiness Zone, Origin, or cacti by Genus
Click on a photo to see a larger version.