Dwarf Sansevieria – Our Favorite Small Snake Plant Varieties

Small snake plant varieties are versatile additions to any garden collection. When planted en masse, they can be practical ground cover. Or they are just as effective in creating that wow effect as a feature plant. Whatever the reason, you can find the perfect solution in our list of dwarf snake plants.

Small Snake Plant Varieties

There is a reason why snake plants are popular plants. They look great, they are easy to care for, making them perfect for any level of gardening skill, and they are low maintenance. This means you can ignore them; they will still look stunning around the home.

If that wasn’t enough, plenty of small snake plant varieties are available worldwide in all shapes and colors.

Let’s look at our favorite dwarf sansevieria and its unique characteristics.

Small Snake Plant Varieties

Here is a list of our favorite snake plants that grow 2 feet in height at maturity.

Sansevieria Black Gold

Sansevieria Black Gold

With a name like Black Gold, it doesn’t surprise us that the Sansevieria Black Gold has stunningly contrasting coloration along its broad leaves.

The Black Gold has pronounced gold edging that distinctively highlights the deep bottle-green leaves. Some versions of Black Gold Snake Plants display variegated lines. However, these lines appear faint against the solid and vibrant colors.

The Black Gold is considered a small snake plant because the leaves reach 2 feet (approximately 60 cm) when fully developed. They make a robust supporting plant that adds color to any indoor plant collection or succulent outdoor garden.

Sansevieria Laurentii

Another beautiful small snake plant specimen, similar to the Sansevieria Black Gold, is the Sansevieria Laurentii.

Sansevieria Laurentii

The Laurentii is so similar to the Black Gold that we wouldn’t fault you if you mistakenly identified one as the other.

Both have stunning coloration on the foliage, with the primary difference being the Sansevieria Laurentii having a slightly lighter green as the base of the leaf color.

The Laurentii grows to 2 feet at maturity and is also considered a small snake plant.

Sansevieria Cleopatra

With a name that includes Cleopatra, you wouldn’t expect anything less than a breathtaking succulent fit for a queen. And the Sansevieria Cleopatra does not disappoint.

Sansevieria Cleopatra

The Cleopatra is a low-lying snake plant that stays relatively small. At maturity, they generally don’t grow beyond 2 feet (60 cm). Their growth pattern follows the rosette patterns, like a beautiful flower.

Like other snake plants, they have broad leaves, with the newer immature leaves forming a tube-like opening at the center of the plant. The leaves are certainly one of the main features of the Sansevieria Cleopatra, with beautiful coloration and growth patterns.

Sansevieria Kirkii

If you are looking for a snake plant with a difference, the Sansevieria Kirkii may be your cup of tea.

It takes on the look of a few different varieties of other snake plants, forming its unique look. Some versions of the Sansevieria Kirkii have broad leaves with harsh and ragged edges that form small ground-dwelling rosettes.

small snake plant kirkii

The varying sub-versions of the Kirkii are why we have placed it in the small category of snake plants. The sizes can vary between 1 to 2 feet in height.

The colors can vary from dusty brown and copper (Sansevieria Kirkii Coppertone) to grey-green colorations (Sansevieria Kirkii Silver Blue) to the more common dark bottle green with light green variegated patterns that we are used to seeing in snake plants.

Dwarf Snake Plant Varieties

Let’s now turn our attention to our favorite miniature snake plants.

Sansevieria Francisii

To kick off our favorite dwarf snake plant varieties, we cannot overlook one of our favorites, the Sansevieria Francisii.

Not only is the name fun to say, but the growth patterns of this adorable dwarf snake plant are also something special.

Dwarf Sansevieria Francisii

Unlike typical Sansevieria plants, like the Trifasciata, the Francisii develops in a rosette pattern. Slowly but surely, building layers of foliage on top of one another.

We consider the Sansevieria Francisii as a dwarf sansevieria because the length of the foliage rarely grows bigger than a foot in length. Generally, they measure 10-15 cm in length, making dainty little rosette configurations.

Sansevieria Ballyi

If you want a true dwarf snake plant, you will find it hard to pass the Sansevieria Ballyi.

Originating from southern Kenya and Tanzania, the Ballyi is a drought-tolerant succulent that thrives on neglect.

Sansevieria Ballyi is renowned for its miniature size. They are often affectionately referred to as regular-sized plants for lego figurines.

credit: pinterest

At maturity, Ballyi snake plants measure well below a foot. However, they can sometimes grow extended limbs that double their size. But these can easily be chopped and propped (propagated).

Sansevieria Pinguicula

Also famously known as the Walking Snake Plant, the Sansevieria Pinguicula is a unique dwarf type of snake plant.

As you may have gathered, the Pinguicula is affectionately called a walking plant because it looks like it is walking. Check out this unique looking succulent below.

Sansevieria Pinguicula dwarf snake plant

The legs of the Sansevieria Pinguicula are aerial roots, which support the main plant and foliage.

And because of this unique growing structure, it makes sense that the Pinguicula is a dwarf variety of snake plant, for it would be tough to support large foliage on aerial roots.

Sansevieria Parva

Another dwarf snake plant popular amongst snake plant enthusiasts is the Sansevieria Parva (also known as the Kenya Hyacinth).

The Parva can reach heights up to 1-1.5 feet tall (30-61 cm) and tends to grow in small rosette formations.

When grown en masse, they grow along the ground, making them perfect as ground cover in succulent gardens or pathways.

Sansevieria Ehrenbergii

The Sansevieria Ehrenbergii is genuinely one of the unique cousins of the snake plant world.

Often referred to as the Samurai Sword plant, the Ehrenbergii displays unique edging on the foliage, giving onlookers the illusion that it is a serrated knife edge – hence the name.

Sansevieria Ehrenbergii samurai sword plant

This particular snake plant belongs to the dwarf sansevieria classification because the foliage develops to lengths approximating around one foot (30 cm). Therefore, it is a low-lying plant that would look great as a feature plant in an indoor plant collection.

The colorations range from the typical snake plant dark bottle green to sometimes showing a muted grey-green along the center of the leaves. The serrated edges are emphasized by yellow stripes or gold trimming along the exterior.

Sansevieria Hahnii (Silver and Golden)

Sansevieria Golden Hahnii and Sansevieria Silver Hahnii are perfect for those who live in small apartments or over-indulgent indoor plant enthusiasts who are quickly running out of room in their indoor plant collection (you know who you are!).

Their small size combined with hardy plant qualities makes them ideal for beginners.

Their shape and appearance are similar to their originating parent plants, the Sansevieria Trifasciata. However, they are considered dwarf snake plants, only growing up to 8-10 inches tall (20-25 centimeters).

golden hahnii snake plant
Golden Hahnii Snake Plant

They form beautiful clumps of thick succulent leaves that grow in a rosette pattern.

As you may already have presumed, the primary difference between the Golden Hahnii and Silver Hahnii is the coloration of the plant’s foliage.

The SIlver Hahnii’s base color underneath the shimmer is a dulled light green with variegated patterns running horizontally across the foliage.

While the Golden Hahnii sports brilliant golden yellow edging running along the length of their foliage. In the middle section of the leaves, you have the more familiar dark green color we are used to with snake plants. Cross-stitching variegated leaves with dark green patches with intricate patterns make this dwarf plant an ever more mesmerizing ornamental plant.

How to Care for Small 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.

Water Requirements

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.

Lighting Requirements

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.

Temperature Requirements

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 Requirements

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 (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:

  • well-draining,
  • 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.

Pot Size

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 and plenty of holes. As we pointed out earlier, constantly wet soil rots your snake plant’s root system.