Office Plants Tips & Ideas

Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata) aka Mother-in-Law’s Tongue

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Almost everyone is familiar with the upright, thick, uniquely coloured leaves of the Snake Plant, also referred to as the Mother-in-Law’s Tongue. This is a hardy plant suitable for lower light areas of the office or home. Native to Africa, Madagascar and southern Asia, there are over 70 species. Only a few have been cultivated commercially. These varieties exhibit a striking 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 silvery green, almost solid colour leaves. Cylindrica is a very unique variety with cylindrical, striated leaves. It is a favourite of designers. The Snake Plant 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. When placed in brighter light, a Snake Plant may occasionally produce a fragrant flower stalk.

The NASA Clean Air Study found the Snake Plant has good air purification qualities, removing several airborne toxins from office environments.

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.

Not enough light for a live Snake Plant? Consider artificial. Excellent replica Snake Plants are available in many sizes. Have a look at the images below.

Artificial Snake Plants in Lechuza Cararo container

Artificial Snake Plants in Lechuza Cararo container

Snake Plant

Snake Plant ‘Laurentii’ in Lechuza Cararo container

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