Getting healthier indoor environment with sansevieria

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Its resilience, together with its well-known air-purifying property, make the sansevieria a wonderful addition for any indoor horticultural environment.

NOWADAYS everyone is very concerned about air pollution, which can bring about unhealthy living environment.

This problem is not only affecting the open space outdoors, but also indoors – our homes, offices, or other working places.

In this respect, there is a simple rectification measure available for us to use at home and at the workplace – putting in purification plants.

Varieties

What then are the good plants for this purpose, and how to grow them?

Some of you may have heard about the ‘Mother-in-Law Tongue’ plant, or the sansevieria.

This genus of flowering plant comes in several cultivars such as the ‘snake plant’ (Sansevieria trifasciata), ‘Lady’s Tongue’ (Sansevieria laurentii), ‘Bird’s Nest Snake’ (Sansevieria hahnii), the ‘Golden Hahnii’, and the ‘Spear’ plant (Sansevieria cylindrica).

All these are resilient and elegant house plants, quite versatile for indoor greenery.

Apart from their unique appearance, they are also low maintenance and most importantly, they have air-purifying properties.

Unlike other indoor plants, the sansevieria is not sought after for its flowers; rather, enthusiasts are drawn to the long, sword-like upright leaves. They vary in colour and patterns, with shades of green, yellow and even silver-white.

The succulent types, like the ‘Spears’, are fleshy and somewhat tubular in shape.

Still, the plants can indeed produce blooms under certain conditions. The appearance of flowers, like the leaves, also vary, but typically, they are white or in cream tone.

They often emit fragrance in the evening.

The ‘Golden Hahnii’, with the lighter-toned lines along the edges of the leaves.

Adaptability and resilience

One of the standard features of the sansevieria is its ability to thrive in various conditions.

It can tolerate low light levels, making it suitable in areas with limited sunlight.

Additionally, this plant is known for its resilience – in other words, it can endure neglect, can withstand irregular watering, and is resistant to pests. These qualities make it an excellent choice for those who are new to gardening and have busy lifestyles.

All these attributes, plus its well-known air-purifying property, make the sansevieria a wonderful addition for any indoor horticultural environment.

Back to flowering, there are tips to promote blooming. Typically, the sansevieria produces flowers upon reaching maturity, but this may take several years.

Another thing that I have observed is that those placed indoors do not seem to flower.

I have mentioned that this plant can tolerate low light conditions, but providing indirect, but still bright sunlight can encourage flowering. Remember one thing, though – do not leave it under a hot sun.

In that regard, sansevieria does thrive in warm temperatures.

Again, I have mentioned that this plant can grow without regular watering, but keeping the soil moist does encourage flowering.

For those wanting a flowering ‘snake’ plant, avoid moving the pot too frequently as such motion can disrupt the flowering process.

Cultivation

Propagation can be done via division of the leaf cuttings, and separation of the roots to grow new plantlets.

The soil should be well-drained to prevent waterlogging. Use similar medium mix as you would for cactus or succulent plants. For pot-growing, make sure the container has drainage holes to prevent accumulation of excess water.

As mentioned previously, the plant can grow in low light conditions, but indoor-growing is much slower than those planted outdoors.

Do ‘feed’ your sansevieria with liquid fertiliser during the growing period, at the rate of once every four to six weeks. Make the solution more diluted than the ratio stated in the instructions.

I can guarantee that growing sansevieria is very easy, even for beginners. It is a good call to have this plant indoors as it helps purify the air inside.

Happy Gardening!