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Snake Plant- Sansevieria Zeylanica

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Sansevieria zeylanica, more commonly identified as bowstring hemp, is an evergreen perennial plant. It’s native to the South East Asian Region, especially found in India and Sri Lanka. A very close relative of the "mother in law's tongue" or "snake plant", it’s vividly green with gorgeous leaf stripes.

Sturdy and hardy, this plant can tolerate a surprising amount of neglect. It’s phenomenal as a houseplant, and in fact will purify the air in your home for you.

Much like sansevieria cylindrica and other snake plant types, this sansevieria is a popular choice whether indoors or out. So let’s talk about the bowstring hemp today and how to raise it right!

The dark-green, long leaves of the bowstring hemp are upright, sturdy, and sword-shaped. Horizontal creamy wave-like stripes are dappled across the surface. The leaves also have pointed tips.

While technically a flowering plant, Sansevieria zeylanica seldom blooms. On the rare occasion that it does, it produces greenish-white, fragrant flowers. But many growers never find their plant blooming at all!

It’s grown in tropical countries for its medicinal and fiber qualities. The dried rhizomatic roots are used to make antiseptic ointments. Fibers in the leaves are used to make cloth, mats, paper pulp and even sails.

Be cautious with your sansevieria zeylanica. Like snake plant and other sansevierias, it is mildly toxic when eaten. It can cause nausea or vomiting, so keep it away from your kids and pets!

Common Name(s):

Bowstring hemp
Scientific Name Sansevieria zeylanica
Family: Asparagaceae
Zone: 9 to 11
Height & Spread: Up to 2-3 feet tall, up to 1 foot across
Light Full sun to partial shade
Soil Well-draining sandy loam
Water: Water when soil dries out, roughly 1x/week
Pests & Diseases:

Mealybugs, spider mites, root rot


Description from Epic Gardening

Photo credit: Eureka Farms