Snake Plant
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Snake Plant
ntroduced Photo: Radhika Vatsan
Common name: Snake Plant, Mother-in-law's tongue • Mizo: Rullei • Kannada: ಗೊಡ್ಡುಮಂಜಿ Goddumanji, ಮಂಜಿನನಾರು Manjina naaru, ಹೆಗ್ಗುರಂಟಿಕೆ Heggurantike
Botanical name: Dracaena trifasciata     Family: Asparagaceae (Asparagus family)
Synonyms: Sansevieria trifasciata, Sansevieria laurentii, Sansevieria jacquinii

Sansevieria trifasciata is commonly called the snake plant, because of the shape of its leaves, or mother-in-law's tongue because of their sharpness. It forms dense stands, spreading by way of its creeping rhizome, which is sometimes above ground, sometimes underground. Its stiff leaves grow vertically from a basal rosette. Mature leaves are dark green with light gray-green cross-banding and usually range between 70-90 cm in length and 5-6 cm in width. Snake Plant, is native to Africa. It has stiff sword-shaped leaves to 4 feet long by 2.75 inches wide. Leaves are banded yellow on either side with a deep green, lightly banded center. It is grown for the hemp-like fiber in the leaves, which is called bowstring hemp. They are an attractive plant for pot culture and are very durable to a wide range of condition. The flowers are greenish-white and are on 18-inch spikes in spring. Snake plant will survive in a wide range of conditions. They tolerate the low light conditions and are very drought tolerant. They are propagated by division of rhizomes at anytime of the year.

Identification credit: R.K. Nimai Singh, J.M. Garg Photographed in cultivation in Goa & Delhi.

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