Large Snake Plant Varieties for Indoors and Gardens
Looking for a large snake plant to become the next feature plant in your indoor plant collection? Or maybe you’re searching for a low-maintenance green wall in your garden. Check out our list of large snake plant varieties that tick all the right boxes.
Snake plants make wonderful additions to any garden – indoors and out.
They are versatile plants that can become the feature of a plant centerpiece or play the supporting role in a group of plants.
But, the main appeal of snake plants is their ability to tolerate a range of living conditions while requiring minimal care and fuss.
Let’s take a look at some of the larger snake plant types that are available around the world.
Our Favorite Large Varieties of Snake Plant
Below is a list of our favorite snake plants that grow to 2 feet tall or larger when provided the optimal living conditions.
When you hear snake plant, you are likely picturing an image of the Sansevieria Trifasciata. They are the most common snake plants grown by home gardeners, and it isn’t hard to see why.
They usually grow between 3-4 feet (91-121 centimeters) when grown indoors. However, they can reach an impressive 12 feet (3.65 meters) tall in optimal outdoor conditions.
They are the quintessential snake plant with long dark bottle-green sword-shaped upright leaves and signature yellow edging. Sansevieria Trifasciata can also be found in variegated form, with dark green horizontal stripes running across the succulent leaves.
Trifasciata is suitable both indoors, planted in soil that is well draining, or in the ground exposed to the elements. They are tough plants – which is why we love them!
The Sansevieria Cylindrica is one of the rather unusual-looking types of snake plant. With, as the name suggests, cylindrical leaves jutting out of the soil.
It is probably their unique look that makes them popular amongst succulent fans, as they can also adopt stunning growing patterns, with their leaf structures developing into star shapes, like the beautiful Cylindrica below.
Sansevieria Cylindrica is also known as the African spear because they shoot up from the soil as straight and sharp as a spear, reaching similar heights to the Trifasciata (3-4 feet high).
If you want something different in your plants, you will not be disappointed with the Sansevieria Cylindrica.
Another beautiful specimen of a larger snake plant is the Sansevieria Laurentii.
Their appearance matches their melodic name, with stunning displays of dark and light green variegated lines dancing on the leaves like sound waves. If that wasn’t enough, the leaves are edged with a golden-yellow stripe that screams look at me.
The Sansevieria Laurentii may not be as tall as the larger varieties listed here. However, they do hold their own growth to an average of 3-4 feet (91-121 centimeters) when grown indoors – sometimes larger when allowed to stretch themselves out in the garden.
Also known as the Elephant’s Tusk Plant, the Sansevieria Stuckyi develops long cylinder-shaped leaves (similar to the Cylindrica).
Like other large snake plant varieties, the Stuckyi can tolerate various conditions, including extended periods of warm weather with little moisture.
What makes the Stuckyi stand apart from the Cylindrica is that it can grow considerably longer. Sometimes as tall as 7 feet (2 meters).
Many indoor plant gardeners like to braid their Sansevieria Stuckyi plants when they have long foliage—adding a beautiful and unique appearance to their collection.
The Sansevieria Bacularis is similar in appearance and features to the Stuckyi and Cylindrica. So we won’t spend too much time here. But we will include a video by Thera Plants showing you how they create stunning lantern shapes with their Sansevieria Bacularis snake plants.
If you are looking for a large snake plant variety with a flair of difference, you can’t go past the Sansevieria Masoniana, otherwise known as the Whale Fin Snake Plant.
Now, this snake plant is considered large for different reasons.
Rather than height, the Sansevieria Masoniana has large, broad leaves that extend outwards. You can sometimes find the Masoniana growing with a solitary broad single leaf, which can appear like a beautiful green whale’s fin protruding out of the soil – hence the name.
In terms of height, the Masoniana can grow to around 1-2 feet (30-61 centimeters) tall. At this height, it probably falls into the medium-sized snake plants. But with their impressive leaf width, it deserved a spot in our large snake plant variety list.
The Sansevieria Zeylanica displays a dazzling array of zig-zagging variegated patterns on its foliage.
They are often mistaken for their close cousin, the Sansevieria Trifasciata. However, the coloration and patterns are more defined in Zeylanica’s leaves.
Like the Trifasciata, Sansevieria Zeylanica generally grows to heights between 2-4 feet (60-121 centimeters) at maturity. But, when given the room to grow and optimal conditions, Zeylanica can sometimes grow as tall as 5-6 feet.
How to Care for Large Snake Plant Varieties
The care requirements for snake plants are the same, irrespective of their size.
Most Sansevieria (or Dracaena Trifasciata as they are now classified) originate from the same regions, like East and West Africa and South East Asia. Therefore, they would be used to the same conditions.
Let’s take a look at how to care for snake plants.
Allow the soil to dry before adding more water to your snake plants.
Although this sounds straightforward, it can be more challenging to determine when the soil is dry.
The easiest way to determine when the soil is dry is to use a finger soil moisture test or a soil moisture meter from your nursery or online at Amazon.
The longer you care for your snake plant, the easier it will be to understand its water needs, especially since the watering frequency changes as the seasons change.
We’ve compiled a guide on water frequencies in different seasons to make things easier. Check out our article HERE.
Snake plants require plenty of bright indirect sunlight to thrive.
Indoor snake plants can tolerate direct sunlight, but only in short doses. If you expose your Sansevieria to direct sunlight, ensure it is only dappled sunlight in the early morning or late evening. Midday and afternoon sun is too intense for indoor snake plants and will quickly dehydrate the leaves, causing leaf burn.
When grown outdoors, the snake plant becomes hardened to the weather elements and has higher tolerances for direct sunlight.
Read more HERE for tips on lighting conditions for snake plants.
The recommended indoor temperature for snake plants is between 60-90° Fahrenheit (15-32° Celsius).
We caution all snake plant owners to be careful of extreme temperatures. At freezing temperatures, water expands when frozen. This means the water reserves in the snake plant leaves can freeze, causing irreparable damage to the leaf cells.
If your area is susceptible to freezing temperatures during winter, we recommend bringing your snake plants inside the house, where the temperature is acceptable.
Humidity isn’t talked about much when it comes to snake plants. However, it is essential in regulating your snake plant’s internal processes, such as transpiration.
Keep your snake plant in between 30 and 50% relative humidity.
Not enough moisture in the air (low humidity) accelerates the transpiration process, dehydrates your plant, and causes water stress.
At the other end of the spectrum, too much moisture in the air (high humidity) will prevent transpiration at the other extreme, and your Sansevieria will suffocate.
We have written an in-depth article discussing how humidity affects snake plants.
Soil & Fertilizer Requirements
The properties of the soil you use for your Sansevieria can have profound effects on the health of your houseplant.
Choosing the best soil for snake plants can significantly impact your plant parent experience. Poor-quality soil will lead to rot issues and may even cause your snake plant to become mushy.
Good-quality soil will reduce the frequency of your watering, facilitate the uptake of nutrients by your snake plant, and reduce its susceptibility to pests and disease.
To be effective, your snake plant soil must be:
- a sandy loam consistency (light and airy), and
- contain some organic materials with water absorption properties.
We have devised a recipe for the perfect snake plant potting mix. You can also watch our video on making snake plant soil below.
Pest and Diseases
If there is one disease you should familiarise yourself with for your Sansevieria, it is root rot.
Root rot is a fungal disease that can develop when your snake plant has been sitting in waterlogged soil from being overwatered. The process of eliminating root rot is straightforward. However, it is onerous. You can read our step-by-step guide for removing root rot in snake plants HERE.
Some leaf-borne fungal diseases, such as mildew and leaf spot, can infect your snake plant. We explore these diseases and (more importantly) treatments HERE.
Snake plants are most susceptible to sap-sucking insects like mealybugs, spider mites, and thrips. These pests have the equipment to penetrate the tough outer layer of the foliage and access the nutrient-rich sap.
The best way to detect any signs of pests (or disease, for that matter) is to regularly inspect your potted plants and manually remove any pests you see. The key is not letting their population get out of hand and become an infestation.
You can read more about symptoms of pest infestation HERE.
Like other snake plants, Sansevieria requires a tight root system to support its large leaves.
When placed in a container too large for their root system, they will refocus their energy on developing the roots rather than growing new leaves. While they are still growing (under the soil), they will appear to be experiencing stunted growth.
Your snake plant pot should also have adequate drainage with plenty of drainage holes. As we pointed out earlier, constantly wet soil rots your snake plant’s root system.
Facts about Snake Plants
Do Snake Plants Have Benefits?
Not only do snake plants look great, but they can also have many beneficial impacts on your lifestyle.
Did you know snake plants can purify the air you breathe?
Snake plants were part of an experiment NASA performed to observe the air-cleaning abilities of indoor plants. They found snake plants could remove toxins from the air, making it cleaner and safer to breathe.
They also discovered that snake plants release pure oxygen into the ambient environment.
How’s that for a beneficial plant?
Are Snake Plants Toxic?
However, not everything is all fairy floss and rainbows with snake plants.
Snake plants contain a mild toxin called saponin. Which means it is toxic if consumed by unsuspecting cats, dogs, and children.
If you notice that your pets or children have consumed parts of a snake plant, we recommend you immediately take them to a medical professional.
Are Snake Plants Good for Feng Shui?
Feng Shui is the study of energy flow in your home and surroundings. And snake plants can influence the flow of energy.
Generally speaking, Feng Shui recommends avoiding sharp objects, like the sword shapes of a snake plant’s leaf, as it represents “poison arrows” that can attract negative energy. However, at the same time, these forms can help to protect incoming negative energy.
Therefore, it is essential to understand the differences. Check out our article about how snake plants affect Feng Shui HERE.