Sansevieria Black Coral is a variety of Sansevieria trifasciata [san-se-VEER-ee-uh, try-fask-ee-AH-tuh].
This plant is commonly called:
- Snake plant
- Saint George’s sword
- Viper’s bowstring hemp
- Mother-in-law’s tongue
Most of these common names come from tall, thick leaves featuring dark green with light green markings.
It was also once used to produce bowstrings, but it’s now mostly grown as an ornamental plant.
It’s an evergreen with dense growth belonging to the family Asparagaceae (asparagus).
The snake plant is native to tropical parts of West Africa, including areas between Nigeria and the Congo.
- Black Coral Sansevieria Plant Care
- How to Propagate Black Coral Snake Plant
- Black Coral Snake Plant Pest or Disease Problems
- Suggested Uses For Mother-in-Law’s Tongue
Black Coral Sansevieria Plant Care
Size and Growth
Snake plants produce dense foliage forming a basal rosette.
The leaf stakes may reach up to 35″ inches long and 2.5″ inches wide.
Mature foliage develops light gray-green cross-banding over the dark green base color.
The cross-banding creates a distinct pattern on the foliage.
Flowering and Fragrance
The snake plant flower appears as small clusters of white flowers in the summer.
The flowers aren’t very significant, but they produce a noticeable fragrance.
Light Conditions and Temperature
The snake plant is best suited for outdoor growth in USDA hardiness zones 9 to 11 with a minimum average temperature of 30° degrees Fahrenheit (-1° C) during the winter.
- It doesn’t tolerate frost.
- Place under bright indirect light, full sun, or bright lighting when growing snake plants outdoors.
- Black coral also grows well indoors at normal room temperature.
- It doesn’t require lots of light or frequent watering.
- These plants prefer medium light or low light when grown inside, as direct sunlight may cause scorching.
Watering and Feeding
Drought-tolerant plants like Dracaena Black Coral (formerly Sansevieria) do need water. Water them when the top few inches of the soil are dry.
When watering, water your succulents thoroughly. Ensure the soil is saturated before it starts to drain.
A potted plant may need watering once or twice per month during the summer, while outdoor plants may only need watering during periods of drought.
As a tropical plant, it prefers high humidity but may also grow well in average room humidity.
During the winter, the plant may only need water once per month.
Winter is the period when Sansevieria trifasciata black coral is most likely to suffer from overwatering and root rot.
Always allow the soil and the upper parts of the roots to dry completely between watering.
Fertilizer isn’t necessary but may encourage brighter colors and faster growth.
If using fertilizer, add the liquid plant food or a balanced fertilizer diluted at a quarter to half strength once per month in the spring and summer during its growing season.
Potting Mix and Transplanting
Use standard succulent potting mix or regular potting soil with additional sand.
The soil should be well-draining, helping the leaves obtain more moisture.
If you have poor soil, you can amend it with orchid bark, perlite, and pumice stone to improve soil drainage. Also, ensure there are adequate drainage holes.
Transplant in the spring before active growth starts.
Only transplant if the plant outgrows its pot or when propagating the plant by division.
Related: Details on Soil for Snake Plants
Grooming and Maintenance
Grooming isn’t necessary.
The plants eventually reach several feet before growth slows.
However, like Sansevieria zeylanica it’s an easy, slow-growing plant and may take several years to reach full size.
Related: Growing The Black Gold Snake Plant
How to Propagate Black Coral Snake Plant
Propagate the plant through division or cuttings.
Propagating by division is one of the easiest methods, as Sansevieria plants tend to produce lots of suckers.
- To propagate by division, remove the entire plant from the soil.
- Loosely shake some of the soil from the plants to get a better view of the rhizomes.
- Use pruning shears to divide the plant into multiple sections.
- Ensure each section contains a portion of the root system.
- Plant the divided pieces in separate containers using standard succulent potting soil.
- Propagate in the spring for the fastest results.
With leaf cuttings propagation, cut healthy leaves into 3″ inch sections.
Insert the lower third of each cutting into damp sand.
NOTE: Propagating with cuttings sometimes produces new plants without the marginal stripes or yellow banding.
Black Coral Snake Plant Pest or Disease Problems
This plant rarely suffers from insect pests or diseases. It’s one of the easiest houseplants to cultivate.
However, spider mites and other common pests tend to have trouble penetrating the thick succulent leaves.
The biggest threat is fungal growth due to root rot.
If the plant receives too much water or grows in soil with poor drainage, the fungus may start to appear near the base of the plant.
Treat fungal growth by correcting the watering frequency and soil drainage.
Cut away the affected areas or propagate the healthy portions of the plant via division or cuttings.
Another common issue is leaf spot, usually brought by bacteria or fungus. It shows up as brown-colored spots along the soft or mushy stem,
The plant isn’t invasive. However, it does contain mild toxicity.
Keep snake plant sansevieria away from pets and children, as consuming parts of the plant may cause stomach irritation, diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.
More on the question: Is the Mother Law Tongue Plant Poisonous?
Suggested Uses For Mother-in-Law’s Tongue
Snake plants are low-maintenance plants that can grow quite large and keep their leaves throughout the year, making them a great addition to a foyer or entrance in a large pot.