Flowers + Plants 101

How to Care for Sansevieria Plants

Thursday, February 3, 2022

Whether you’re a seasoned plant parent or you’re just starting to dip your toe in the plant world, you can’t go wrong with a sansevieria, also known as a snake plant. These bold, attractive plants are low maintenance and add a sophisticated style to any space.

Hand holding a yellow watering can about to water a tall green snake plant in a contemporary green pot against a white wall background.

Snake plants are air-purifying workhorses, removing formaldehyde and nitrogen oxide from your home’s air each night. They also come in several different varieties — from the gold-edged green snake plant with tall spikey leaves to varieties with shorter, triangular leaves.

How to Care for a Sansevieria

The sansevieria is a striking, easy-care plant that makes a statement in your space, and caring for them couldn’t be easier — in fact, they almost thrive on neglect. The key is knowing when to water them.

Snake Plant Light Requirements:

Snake plants are happiest in bright, indirect light but still grow well in low light conditions. They’ll take whatever you can give them. Sansevieria will grow quicker with bright light, but be careful because too much direct sunlight will burn their leaves. Rotate your plant regularly to ensure even growth.

Snake Plant Water Requirements:

If you forget to water your sansevieria a few weeks in a row, it’s going to be OK! They only need to be watered very sparingly, similar to succulents. Water lightly about once every three weeks or so when the soil is completely dry. Your sansevieria may need slightly more water to acclimate to warmer temperatures during the spring and summer months. They prefer temperatures between 70 and 90 degrees anyway, given they are native to tropical habitats.

Snake Plant Fertilizer:

Slow-growing plants rarely need fertilizer, and the sansevieria is one of those plants. If you choose to fertilize your snake plant, apply once in spring and once in summer using a diluted liquid houseplant fertilizer.

Repotting Your Snake Plant:

Snake plants grow so slowly that they rarely need to be repotted. Surprisingly, they actually prefer to be pot-bound, which is when the roots fill the pot, and there is no room for them to expand. Snake plants living in low light may need to be repotted every five to 10 years, whereas snake plants living in bright light may need to be repotted every three to five years.

When repotting your snake plant, use soil that is a 50/50 mix of potting soil and cacti/succulent soil. This will create air pockets and help prevent overwatering. Also, be sure to plant your sansevieria in a pot with good drainage.

Sansevieria Toxicity:

Snake plants are mildly toxic to pets, and it is best to keep them out of their reach.

Order a Snake Plant

Sansevieria care is easy, making it a great gift. Consider bringing one to a housewarming party, sending one to a friend or family member as a thank you, or gifting one just because.

The sansevieria is a striking, easy-care plant that makes a statement in your space.

A collection of healthy indoor plants, including snake plants and a spider plant, potted in ornate terracotta pots on a white shelf against a light-colored wall.