Taking care of Dracaena

Snake Plant Care Guide

Dracaena trifasciata is one of the most well-known and hardy indoor plants. The leaves are 6 inches to 8 feet tall. The snake plant often has a yellow border and can vary in color. They are easy to grow and are very strong. Plants thrive in bright sunlight or dark corners of your house. Snake plants get a lot of sunlight if they get a few hours of it. It is best to repot snake plants in the spring.

Snake Plant Care

It’s hard to kill the snake plant, so it’s an excellent pick for beginning gardeners. This plant thrives in a pot on the floor or on a table. They are prone to root rot due to overwatering. Water the plants only when the soil seems dry.

Snake plants can go up to two months between waterings in cold conditions. However, watering them regularly after three to four weeks in warmer months is essential.

Light Requirements 

Snake plants love indirect but continuous light with few hours of direct sun. These plants can adapt to full sunlight conditions and survive dim light situations.

Soil Type

Snake plants enjoy a loose, well-draining potting soil mix. These plants do great in sandier soils. You should use soil potting media with a reduced amount of peat content. Peat works great in various conditions, but it will become tightly packed and often has issues draining or rehydrating. An all-purpose cactus potting mix seems the best choice for your snake plants.

Water

Allow the plant’s soil to dry out thoroughly before watering again. In winter months, reduce the watering frequency to monthly or when the ground feels dry. Err on the underwatering part. Excessive watering can harm your snake plants.

Temperature and Humidity

Snake plants like warm environments and suffers when subjected to temperatures below 50°F. Set all your plants in a spot where they will stay protected from drafts. Temperature ranges between 70°F to 90°F works best for your snake plants. Frost will kill your plant.

Fertilizer

Feed your snake plants with a moderate cactus fertilizer during their growing season, or use a well-balanced liquid slow-release fertilizer (10-10-10) diluted to half of its strength. It is necessary to remember that you should never fertilize these plants in the winter season.

Pruning

Use sterile pruning scissors, shears, or a sharp knife to remove leaves of your snake plants at the soil line or cut their mature or damaged leaves to promote new growth. The ideal time to start pruning your plant is during its growing season, generally spring or summer. You can also prune snake plants during their off-season, but because sometimes pruning can stress out plants, it’s good to do it when your plant is in its growing phase. Control the height of the snake plants by removing their tallest leaves. Additionally, it is necessary to remove leaves already marred to help spur new leaf growth. 

Propagating Your Snake Plant

Like pruning, it’s ideal for propagating your snake plants during their growing seasons, such as spring or summer. You can easily divide these plants during repotting when they reach about four inches in height. Alternatively, new plant shoots may emerge from soil that you can pot independently. Propagation through cuttings is also an effective method to propagate your snake plants.

Follow the below-outlined instructions for both propagation methods.

Propagating Snake Plant Via Root Division

  • Take a clean pot, a sharp knife, and well-draining cactus potting soil.
  • Pull the plant’s root ball out of its old container and place your plant on a plain, flat surface. Using your hand, thoroughly and gently brush away the extra soil from its rhizome or root structure.
  • Divide your snake plant into sections by using a sharp knife and make sure that the root for every area stays intact throughout the process. Cutting through your plant won’t kill it, so don’t worry.
  • Replant each new section of your snake plant into a clean container with a well-draining cactus potting mix
  • Water your new snake plant sections and spot them in a partly sunny area.

Leaf-cutting propagation

  • Using a sterilized pair of scissors, pruning shears, or a sharp knife, slice off a healthy, long leaf from the snake plant.
  • Root these leaf cuttings in water by sitting them in a clean pot of water, soaking the cut end. Locate them in a partly sunny spit and wait for root growth.
  • Top off its water every few days to keep it in level.  After every two weeks, discard the old water from the container and refill it with fresh, clean water to prevent algae and bacterial growth.
  • Once the roots system develops about one inch long, place the root end in a high-quality, well-draining cactus potting soil.
  • Water your new plant’s roots and spot it in a partially sunny location.

How Can You Grow a Snake Plant from Seeds?

Snake plants can grow quickly from seeds. However, it’s easier, reliable, and quicker to propagate them by other methods. All snake plant seeds have meager germination rates and take about three to six weeks to show any seedlings. To grow them by seeds, you need to fill a 3-inch container with a seed starting mix or a well-draining cactus potting soil mix. Then, sprinkle the seeds on the starting mix and place your plant’s pot in a sunny, warm area. Cover your plant’s container with a clear plastic dome or plastic wrap to retain humidity and warmth. When you see any seedling growth, remove that plastic covering. Furthermore, it is essential to keep the soil slightly moist but never too wet or soggy throughout its germination period. After reaching three to four inches in height, the seedling will be prepared to repot.

Potting And Repotting Your Snake Plant

Pick a sturdy content material while potting your snake plant, as robust roots will easily crack and break fragile containers. Generally, dracaena is a slow grower that hardly requires repotting. However, if provided with ample sunshine, these plants thrive rapidly and need dividing or repotting. The ideal time to repot your snake plants is during the spring season. When repotting, remember to use a cactus potting mix, a fresh, high-quality potting soil, or a mixture of both potting mixes.

Overwintering

Snake plants are of tropical origin and die in temperatures constantly below 50°F or when affected by winter frost. Take your snake plant indoors before the outside temperature falls that low. Keep your plant in a warmer spot, protected from winter drafts, and maintain its soil properly on the drier side. During the winter season, snake plants stop growing as they enter dormancy. Also, it’s essential to water your snake plants every six weeks or so throughout the winter.

Common Pests

The most common snake plant pests include scales, spider mites, gnats, aphids, whiteflies, and mealybugs. By keeping your plant healthy, you can prevent insects invasion. Pests usually attack plants when they suffer from environmental problems such as humidity, water levels, and air circulation. When you notice any pests on your plants, remove them by picking them off or using a gentle spray of organic neem oil or water to keep these insects at bay.

How Can You Make Your Snake Plant Bloom?

Snake plants feature tubular, creamy white flowers that resemble lilies. These plants flower annually when their sun, water, and humidity needs are suitable. However, when snake plants grow indoors year-round, they hardly flower. The shift of seasons, like the advent of spring, boosts your plants out of dormancy and encourages their growth. Their flowers are fragrant and similar to other dracaena species; they bloom at night. It is not mandatory to deadhead their flowers; they drop naturally.

More about Snake Plants

Necessities:

Snake Plant Soil

Snake Plant Food

Other plant Care Guides for Beginners

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