Grace Allen | Contributing Writer | Saturday, 12 August 2017

Houseplant Hacks: Everything You Need To Know About The Snake Plant

Houseplant Hacks: Everything You Need To Know About The Snake Plant

The Debrief: This plant has your name all over it

Illustration by Amy Victoria Marsh

Snake plants are thought to be fairly idiot-proof - they are very low-maintenance indoor plants that act as air purifyers. I mean, what's not to love? So cast that withered brown Ficus aside, and learn what makes this particular houseplant tick.

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What's the deal?


The Snake Plant (otherwise know as Mother In Law's Tongue, weirdly), is native to tropical West Africa.
A hardy plant with stiff, upright leaves, it's surrounded by folklore - in China, those who grew this plant were believed to have virtues bestowed on them by 8 gods. 

Any benefits?

NASA conducted a study that included the Snake Plant, on air purification. The best place to keep one is in the bedroom, as they convert C02 into oxygen at night. 

How best to care for them?

When buying a Snake Plant, go for one with dark green lights, as any paleness indicates it may have already taken a turn for the worse. The worse thing you could do is overwater these plants. Or just not water them at all.  According to The Spruce, they are about the best plants for 'beginners' and survive on very little attention. A terracotta pot is best, with free-draining soil and your plant will be happy wherever, really, in bright sunlight or total dark.  

Anything to watch out for?

According to the ASPCA, Snake Plants are toxic to cats and dogs (when ingested), so keep them well out of reach if you have pets. But overall, this plant ticks all the boxes: low maintenance, affordable, environmentally-friendly and pretty to look at. 

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