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One of the best air purifying plant – Sansevieria trifasciata aka Snake plant

To care for a Sansevieria is as easy as it can get! If you think you can’t have plants in your home, maybe because you don’t get lots of natural sunlight or you think you don’t know how to care for a plant, think again!

Sansevieria aka Snake plant - the best air purifying plant

How much light do Snake plants need | Lighting

How much light does a Sansevieria need

Your Sansevieria will like anywhere from bright indirect light to low-to-medium light.

You can place your Sansevieria in almost any corner of your home, as long as it’s not a dark corner with 0 sunlight. Although the Sansevieria would stand even those conditions, every plant needs at least some amount of sunlight to continue to grow and develop.

Having it in a brighter spot will help it grow faster and develop new leaves faster. But, if you can’t provide it a bright spot, it will survive in a low-to-medium place as well.


Sansevieria is a perfect beginner plant that can boost your confidence in taking care of a plant, without killing it. You can’t go wrong here! Well, you can if you over water it, but the rule for watering Sansevieria is really easy – to the point! You need to water it only when the soil is completely dried out.

how long can sansevieria survive without water

Just stick your finger in the soil, if it’s still moist, don’t water it. When the soil is dried out, give it a good soak and let all the excess water to drain out. This is important because you can’t let it sit in water, otherwise, over time, you’ll manage to kill an “unkillable” plant.

So remember – let the soil completely dry out between watering and then water it thoroughly, letting all the excess water to drain out.

When will it dry out, you really can’t tell. This will depend on numerous factors (read more about this in my article – 7 factors that affect your houseplant watering frequency), but one thing’s for sure – you’ll need to water it less frequently during winter and more often during summer. This can be like once per month during winter and twice or three times per month during summer. Before watering, be sure to check out if the soil is dried out.

How to water a Sansevieria?

how to water sansevieria trifasciata

The Sansevieria has a specific shape, it has like a nest in the center of the plant. This is more noticeable with the Sansevieria Trifasciata ‘Hahnii’.

When you water your Snake plant – water only around your plant. Don’t water all over the plant, especially not the inside part! Water won’t evaporate that quickly from there and if it sits for too long, it could rot the leaves.

If you are wondering “but then, how does it survive in nature when it’s raining?”, well, our homes don’t have the same conditions. Air circulation is 100% better outside, we don’t have wind in our homes that could blow away that water. And generally, water will evaporate faster outside, in nature.

If you do water the center of the plant, don’t worry! You can just tilt the plant above the sink and let the water drain.

How long can snake plants go without watering?

Sansevieria plants, like Succulents, retain water in their meaty leaves, so even a couple of weeks of dry soil won’t kill it. But, when you feel the soil is dry, water it, don’t wait for another couple of weeks.


There is no need to provide additional humidity to your Sansevieria, on the contrary! It really doesn’t need high levels of humidity, like Calathea do, for example.

Soil need

Generally, soil with good drainage is ideal for the Snake plant. I use regular houseplant potting mix. You can also mix together regular houseplant potting mix and succulent mix. The important thing is, as I said, that the soil provides good drainage. Using just regular soil for outdoor flowers and other outdoor plants is not a good option.


Sansevieria is commonly known as Snake plant because of the form of the foliage and Mother-in-law’s tongue because of its sharp leaves.

You may wonder what’s the difference between a Snake plant and a Mother-in-law’s tongue? While the Snake plant is the classic green Sansevieria Trifasciata and a Mother-in-law’s tongue is a variety of it – the Sansevieria Trifasciata Laurentii, they are actually the same plant.

There are many Sansevieria varieties.

Many have the same shape but just a slight difference in the color of the foliage, like the mentioned Sansevieria Trifasciata. But, you can also find different shapes and sizes, too. When it comes to care, don’t worry, they all need the same type of care.

One of the most common ones are:

There are also Sansevieria:

  • moonshine
  • masoniana
  • twisted sister
  • arborescens
  • kirkii
  • suffruticosa
  • eilensis
  • ehrenbergii

… and over 50 more varieties 😉

Interesting facts

The Sansevieria is considered to be one of the best air purifying plants for your home. It constantly produces new oxygen, even at night, which makes it perfect for the bedroom. But… just one plant won’t do it. The NASA studies show that in order to achieve efficient air purification you need, in average, one medium-to-large plant for every 9m2 (100 sq ft).

Great purifying plants are also Piece Lilies (Spathiphyllum), Dracena Janet Craig, English ivy, Lady Palm and Dracena Marginata.

Sansevieria Toxicity

sansevieria is toxic to cats and dogs
The Sansevieria is considered to be toxic to cats and dogs by the ASPCA.
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