How to grow Sanseviera


Today we bring you another indoor plant for the collection that we are making every day. The Sanseviera. It is also known by the name of Sword of St. George, Lizard’s Tail or Mother-in-law’s Tongue. Looking at the shape of the leaves … we will not go into the why of the last name. We can get scalded. Agavaceae family, like the already published Tronco del Brasil , but very different and exotic.



It has its origins in Africa , where it endures extreme weather conditions. Hence its resistance to any situation to which we subject it. Therefore, it is an excellent option for places where other indoor plants would not hold. If you can’t find a plant for a shady place, the Sanseviera can handle it. If you can’t find a plant for a place with direct sun exposure, the sanseviera can handle it. A versatile, exotic and slender plant that will look good wherever you decide to place it inside the home or outside.

We owe the name Sanseviera to Thunberg, a Swedish botanist and naturalist from the 18th century. He was one of the 17 select students called the Apostles of Linnaeus, another Swedish botanist, father of the scheme of the current species taxonomy. Thunberg decided to honor Raimondo di Sangro, seventh prince of San Severo.


Temperature: If we have to set a cold limit, 0 ºC will be the minimum it can withstand. In any case, it is not advisable to have it in those thermal ranges. The 0 ºC thing is because it does not support frost well . It is very hard and can withstand low temperatures but frost is its Achilles heel. In places where winters are harsh, it is not advisable for outdoors.

Irrigation: Little, no. Very little. It is not that it is a cactus, but excess water takes its toll like cacti. It rot its roots. So do not insist on watering it because it withstands prolonged drought conditions.

Brightness: Whatever you want. This is a great advantage of this plant. Obviously the optimal development will be found with a high exposure although the lack of light does not affect it too much. Even direct exposure supports it without problem. Hence its versatility of situation within the home.

Substrate: Draining, very very very draining. That is what it needs for its proper development and a small pot. A few days ago we tweeted a tip about cacti. They prefer small containers . Well, the Sanseviera too. They do not adapt well to large pots. A mixture of mulch and sand is a suitable substrate.


All the problems that we are going to find in the Sanseviera will almost certainly be a problem due to excess irrigation. If the leaves darken, wilt, or the plant stops growing, it will almost certainly be from too much water.


To reproduce the sanseviera is relatively easy. It does not have the simplicity of a cutting but almost. Simply by division of rhizome. We separate a piece of rhizome with a scalpel or a very sharp razor, taking a few leaves. Basically we divide the plant in two, or three or four. What we want or what the plant gives according to the size. We transplant and ready.


The best known and sold is the one you have in the main photo. It is the  Sansevieria trifaciata laurentii. It is the one with that yellow band on the edges of the sharp blade. We have others like the Sansevieria trifaciata variegata ,  Sansevieria trifaciata hahnii, or  Sansevieria trifaciata argentea. All of them with similar characteristics but slight differences in color and width of the sheet.

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