October’s feature plant is: Mother-in-Law’s Tongue aka Snake Plant (Sansevieria)
Almost everyone is familiar with the upright, thick, uniquely coloured leaves of the Mother-in-Law’s Tongue plant, also referred to as the Snake plant. This is a hardy plant suitable for lower light areas of the office or home. It is available in a number of varieties exhibiting a wide range of colourful markings on the leaves. ‘Zeylanica’ has many shades of dark green. ‘Laurentii’ displays bold yellow stripes on the leaf margins, and ‘Moonshine’ has pale green, almost solid colour leaves. Cylindrica is a very unique variety with cylindrical, striated leaves. It is a favourite of designers. The Mother-in-Law’s Tongue as a single specimen in a tall, graceful pot gives a very architectural appearance. The small dwarf varieties work well as understory plantings, ground cover, or border plants in large planters.
This plant can tolerate fairly low light levels, although it does require light for a few hours every day. It needs very little water, and does best when allowed to dry out thoroughly between waterings. It is a slow growing plant that does not need to be pruned often. Remove dead leaves promptly, and cut any excessively tall leaves at soil level. This is a hardy, disease and pest resistant plant. Remember to fertilize monthly during the spring, summer and fall.