It seems that for a long time, people kind of forgot about the snake plant. Luckily, snake plant varieties were rediscovered as a pretty ornamental plant for in your home several years ago and have been gaining in popularity since. Take a walk around Instagram with all the plant lovers and plant bloggers and you'll see them everywhere these days.
The Snake Plant is Back in the House
Their generally slightly odd appearances and whimsical charm are the biggest draws for many people. Typically, you get several large and upright leaves in a variety of colors that are very eye-catching, and different snake plant varieties are a great way to fill in a bare space in your home. It’s also very popular because it’s very easy to care for, and this makes it an acceptable plant for beginners or people who don’t have a lot of time to baby a plant to ensure it stays healthy.
Odd Appearances and a Whimsical Charm
The Sansevieria family - the botanical name of the snake plant - currently consists of more than 70 different varieties, making it daunting to decide which one you should add to your plant collection. This is especially true if you've never had a snake plant at home before. Scroll down to explore a list of great sansevieria plants and find a variety that fits you.
Originating from Kenya, this snake plant variety features spiked, upturned leaves, and it grows in a trunk shape. It can get up to a foot tall at full maturity, and it has marbled leaves that go from dark to light green. It tolerates everything from partial shade to full sun, and it likes to be in dry soil. Watering it too much will induce root rot, so only water it when the soil dries out. Fertilize it in the spring.
Long narrow deep green lance-shaped leaves stretch to lengths of 10 to 22 inches in a delicate arching appearance. Parva grows in groups of 6 to 12 leaves and then forms runners effectively creating its own colony. In the summer delicate flower spikes emerge boasting multiple fragrant white flowers. Commonly grown as office plants, it is one of those plants that can survive under periods of extreme neglect. Due to its toughness and ease of growth, they are perfect for growing indoors or on the urban balcony.
Coming in at just over five feet tall at full maturity, this snake plant variety does well planted in containers. The leaves are very long, and they have a darker green coloring with lighter transverse bands of color on them before they fade to a soft white at the tips. It also produces eye-catching white flowers with a purple stripe in the spring months. It needs a bright and warm location to flourish, and you should water it sparingly. It’s a drought-resistant plant that likes to be outside during the summer and brought back in before the cooler weather comes around.
Sansevieria hyacinthoides looks like a larger Sansevieria trifasciata, having wider and taller flat leaves, deep green in color, marked with pale green spots, and a typical, thin, reddish, dry margin. It grows well indoors as a house plant and it is neglect-tolerant because it can spend weeks or months without water! Plant in well-drained garden soil mixed with plenty of compost and mulch. Water little and regularly until established, after which water need only be supplemented when the soil gets dry.
Sansevieria zeylanica is a tough, hardy snake plant. The long sword-like leaves are dark green with wavy lighter green bands. They have rather a rugged, shabby-chic appearance often with rough, brown edges. Some minor leaf cracking is also common. Sansevieria zeylanica are not as common as Sansevieria trifasciata, but they are just as bullet-proof and just as stunning. Easy care, shade-loving, hard to kill, air-purifying; these beautiful plants have it all.
This is one of the best-known snake plant varieties available, and it comes from Westen Africa. It’s better known as the Mother-in-Law’s Tongue, and it grows tall leaves with creeping rhizomes. The leaves are grass green with light green or white stripes. It grows surprisingly well in narrow pots, and it likes a slightly sandy soil that drains very well between watering sessions. This plant likes partial shade to full sun, and it’s resistant to drought. You may want to periodically wipe the dust off the leaves with a damp cloth to keep them healthy and take care not to overwater it. It’s excellent for removing toxins from the air too.
Sansevieria trifasciata 'Bantel's Sensation' via @_plant.bae
Tropical looking, unusual upright plants produce a rosette of thick, wide occasionally striped, lightly wavy margined leaves. Short in stature, Subspicta is a great candidate for smaller urban collections where space is limited. Spring and early summer delicate lightly scented flowers emerge from medium-tall stalks. Commonly grown as office plants, it is one of those plants that can survive under periods of extreme neglect. Due to their toughness and ease of growth, they are perfect for growing indoors or on an urban balcony.
Better known as the Star snake plant variety, this plant offers wide leaves that taper to a point, and it has a host of light markings. The leaves will grow up to six feet tall, and they can get 3.6-feet wide at the widest point. It grows a dark green coloring, and you can grow them in large clumps indoors or out. The spiky look with tall leaves is very eye-catching, and it does well in sandy but well-drained soil. Plant it in an area that gets partial shade to full sun, and water it when the top layer of the soil starts to dry out. It’ll produce a spike of white, feathery flowers from the center, and this is where it gets the name of the Star Snake Plant.
The cast-iron qualities of the snake plants have merit, but not everyone likes their tall stiff appearance. Several 'rosette' varieties of a smaller and more graceful design are available. These 'squashed-down' types known as bird's nest Sansevieria varieties are just as tough as any of the older, upright types. This snake plant variety has very broad leaves that taper to a slight point, and they have light and dark green striped markings that run horizontally on the leaves. The leaves will form clusters as they grow to look like funnels. It’s a shorter plant that will only get around a foot tall at full maturity.
This snake plant variety is better known as Shark’s Fin or Whale’s Fin. It’s native to the central portion of Africa, and you get very broad leaves with a mottled pattern that can get up to four feet long. They’re paddle-shaped foliage that can be variegated. It has a purple-banded sheath to make it easy to identify. They thrive in bright light, and they won’t bloom if you put them in partial or full shade. Never leave this plant standing in water, and only water it when the top layers of soil dry out.
Most snake plant varieties are simple and low-maintenance house plants that are easy to grow but hard to kill. They can create dramatic statements in your home or outside, and you can easily plant multiple varieties together without a problem because most cultivars have similar growing conditions. They’ll provide height and eye-catching looks for years to come.