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"How to care for Sansevierias"

How to care for Sansevierias

Some of the easiest types of plants for beginners is a plant in the Sansevieria family. They require very little attention, they purify the air in your house, and they look amazing. Even though they are very easy to take care of there are a few things you need to keep in mind when taking care of this plant, but especially the water requirements and the light levels.

These are the steps we're going to cover in this guide:

  1. Water requirements
  2. Light requirements
  3. Fertilizing your Sansevieria
  4. Soil for sansevierias
  5. Flowers on your sansevieria

You can click on the links to take you to the right section. Let's get into the caring tips for a Sansevieria!

Water requirements

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Sansevierias are plants that require very little water. When you water this plant, you need to make sure that all of its soil is dried out. You can do this by sticking a finger into the soil. If you're going to kill this plant, it's most likely due to overwatering. So make sure you put this plant in very well draining soil and when you water it, make sure none of the excess water stays in the pot. Sansevierias can't have their roots in any water, because root rot occurs quite easily. Sansevierias are very sensitive to overwatering and prefer to be dry most of the time.

This all sounds very scary, but it really isn't. Just forget to water this plant for 2 to 4 weeks at a time and you'll be fine. I've once forgotten to water my snake plant for 2 months and it thrived during this period of time. It loved the lack of moisture! It never suffered from this and it was happy to receive the water after that long period of drought.

In the summer you can water this plant every two weeks, but in the winter, when it's dormant, limit this to once a month. This really depends on where you place your Sansevieria: in a bright or dark location. If it's in a brighter location, you can water it a little more often. Just make sure the soil dries out in between waterings.

Light requirements

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Sanseviera in windowsill

Sansevierias are also very flexible when it comes to light requirements. They can be placed in the shade all the way up to direct sunlight. I've had my snake plant in the shade for at least 6 months now and it still looks just as beautiful as when I first got it. It won't grow as quickly as when you provide it with some more light, but if you're okay with this, it's really not a problem to keep this plant in a darker place.

A sansevieria is a very strong plant, when you expose it to direct sunlight from a southern/western window, it's leaves won't burn. However, when you do place your plant in an environment like this, make sure to water it more often, as water evaporates much quicker in direct sunlight. When your Sansevieria gets more sunlight, it'll also grow much more quickly.

Fertilizing your Sansevieria

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If you don't like to fertilize your plants, a Sansevieria is the perfect plant for you. Sansevierias are slow-growing plants, so it's not necessary to fertilize them. Fertilizing is usually reserved for plants that grow quickly, have flowers, or use a lot of energy in another way. Sansevierias don't have flowers, don't grow quickly and are generally very static plants. They're incredibly energy efficient, and won't require fertilizer very often. If you do want to use fertilizer, use it during the growing season (the summer) and use general plant fertilizer.

Soil for sansevierias

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Sansevierias are plants that love dry environments and don't do well in humid and wet environments. Because of this, it's important to use very well-draining soil for sansevierias. It's best to combine this with a pot that has a drainage hole in the bottom. This way all the excess water will escape from the pot and you won't risk your sansevieria getting root rot.

You can also grow your Sansevierias in Leca as this is perfect for plants that like to dry out and are sensitive to overwatering. Leca will take away all the difficulty when it comes to soil and watering your Sansevieria properly. The only thing you'll have to think about with Leca is the sunlight exposure, which makes this plant even easier to take care of.

Flowers on your Sansevieria

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Flowers on a sansevieria

Your Sansevieria can grow flowers, but it happens very rarely. These flowers are a sign that your Sansevieria is stressed or it's very rootbound. When you see these flowers grow, be sure to check if your Sansevieria is getting the care that it should. It's also important to check if your house plant has enough space to keep growing of if it might be time to repot.

These flowers are a bad sign, but they don't harm your plant in any way.


Sansevierias are very strong and beautiful plants. They can grow in low-light environments, but also in direct sunlight. The most important thing to keep in mind when taking care of a Sansevieria is to keep it in a dry environment. Sansevierias are very sensitive to overwatering, so keeping it in a dry environment is vital for it to thrive. If you're unsure whether you can water a Sansevieria correctly, you can always grow this amazing plant in Leca.

Thank you for reading this post! I hope it helps you to keep your plants healthy and beautiful! If you're looking for more guides on specific plants, you can always request a plant guide to get a guide for the plant you have trouble with.

Tags: snake plant, sansevieria, dry, sun-loving, beginner-friendly, low-light

Posted on: May 15, 2019 Last updated on: May 30, 2021

Other common names for this plant

  • Snake plant
  • Sansevieria Trifasciata
  • Saint George's sword
  • Mother-in-law's tongue
  • Viper's bowstring hemp
  • Dracaena trifasciata

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Frequently asked questions

Can a sansevieria survive in dark areas?
Sansevierias can survive in any kind of light exposure, including dark areas. The only difference is that your snake plant won't grow when it's in a dark place. It'll only do this in lighter areas.
Can sansevieria be in direct sunlight?
Sansevierias can be in any kind of light exposure, including direct sunlight. The only thing you'll have to keep in mind is that you'll need to water your snake plant more often when it's exposed to direct sunlight.
Does a sansevieria need to be fertilized?
A sansevieria does not need to be fertilized at all. It's a very slow growing plant and is very energy efficient.

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