Dracaena trifasciata (Snake Plant) is the most popular ornamental, evergreen perennial plant that forms dense stands, spreading by way of its creeping rhizome, which is sometimes above ground, sometimes underground. It has stiff sword-shaped leaves that grow vertically from a basal rosette. The leaves are banded yellow on either side with the deep green, lightly banded center. It is grown for the hemp-like fiber in the leaves, which is called bowstring hemp. Mature leaves are dark green with light gray-green cross-banding and usually range from 28 – 35 inches long and 5 – 6 cm wide. Dracaena trifasciata produces greenish-white flowers on 46 cm spikes in spring. Snake Plant is an excellent plant for purifying the air and removing toxins from indoor environments.
Species: D. trifasciata
Scientific Name: Dracaena trifasciata (Prain) Mabb.
Synonyms: Sansevieria aureovariegata Mottet, Sansevieria jacquinii N.E.Br., Sansevieria laurentii De Wild., Sansevieria trifasciata Prain.
Common Names: Mother-in-law’s tongue, Saint George’s sword, viper’s bowstring hemp, Snake plant.
How to grow and maintain Dracaena trifasciata (Snake Plant):
It requires bright, filtered light and can stand plenty of direct sunlight but will adapt to low light conditions too.
Dracaena trifasciata thrives best in well-drained, sandy soil enriched with peaty compost.
Water your plant regularly during the growing season and always keep the soil evenly moist but not soggy. Allow the topsoil to become slightly dry between each watering. During the winter months, reduce watering.
It prefers an average to warm room temperatures 65 – 75 degrees Fahrenheit / 18 – 24 degrees Celsius. It will endure fluctuating temperatures, but not below 55 degrees Fahrenheit / 13 degrees Celsius.
Fertilize monthly during the active growth periods in the spring and summer, with a liquid or water-soluble fertilizer. Try not to fertilize during the winter season.
Dracaena trifasciata can be easily propagated by dividing up overcrowded clumps of leaves. Separate clusters of leaves from rootstock with a sharp blade or knife when the leaves are six inches long. Most clusters will have some roots attached and can be planted directly in the normal potting mixture. Also can be propagated by leaf cuttings.
Re-pot the plant during the spring season, only when plants get crowded and need dividing.
Pests and Diseases:
There is no serious pest or disease problems. Watch for bugs, spiders, and mealybugs.