Sansevieria ‘golden hahnii’ (pronounced HAHN-ee-ey) is a Sansevieria trifasciata (san-se-VEER-ee-uh try-fask-ee-AH-tuh) sport famous for its buttery yellow leaves accented with green stripes.
Golden hahnii snake plant was patented in 1941 and accredited to a botanist known only as Hahn.
Over the years, it has picked up various scientific names, including Sansevieria craigii, Sansevieria jacquinii, and Sansevieria laurentii.
It’s cultivar name, ‘Golden Hahnii,’ has inspired the alternate common name gold hahnii, and it’s also commonly referred to as:
- Bird’s nest sansevieria
- Bird’s nest snake plant
- Dwarf snake plant
- Dwarf mother in law’s tongue
- Good luck plant
This member of the Asparagaceae family is an air purifier, making it as functional as attractive.
It holds a special place among sansevierias. This New Orleans-based dwarf species is the basis for most dwarf snake plants that have come after.
While not technically a perennial, this species can be grown in Arizona, Florida, and similarly hot states.
‘Golden Hahnii’ Care
Size & Growth
This dwarf snake plant only grows 6 to 8″ inches tall and up to 6″ inches across. It makes an excellent choice for groundcover or smaller apartments.
Under ideal conditions, it can achieve 12″ inches and remain as small as 3″ inches in poor conditions.
The variegated foliage ranges from light yellow with vertical green stripes to grey-green with dark green bands and a creamy yellow margin, depending on the amount of light it receives.
These leaves form a tight rosette resembling a cross between a rose and a bird’s nest, lending to one of its monickers and sometimes causing it to be mistaken for a bromeliad.
Flowering and Fragrance
When the dwarf snake plant becomes overcrowded or stressed, it will flowers.
The flowers are small, sterile, and greenish-white.
While the flowers are hard to spot and produce seedless orange berries, they give off a pleasant fragrance.
Light & Temperature
‘Gold Hahnii’ prefers direct sunlight or bright, indirect light.
The amount of light directly affects its variegation. More light equals a more attractive display.
However, it will tolerate low light conditions at the cost of vibrancy and size.
Gold hahnii grows best in USDA hardiness zones 10-11 but grows indoors in temperatures kept between 60° and 73° degrees Fahrenheit.
Some owners report that Bird Nest tolerates outdoor cultivation in Zone 9. It can only survive for short periods when exposed to temperatures around 50° degrees Fahrenheit.
While this plant loves a moderately humid environment, it will still enjoy normal household humidity levels.
Avoid keeping it near vents or other drafts, and give it a water dish if you feel it isn’t getting enough air moisture.
Avoid misting this plant, as it tends to leave water spots on the foliage.
Watering and Feeding
This succulent only needs watering when the soil becomes completely dry, usually every 14 days or so.
Water thoroughly and allow the plant to drain.
This plant doesn’t require fertilizer, but you may choose to give a small dose of general fertilizer in the spring and mid-summer.
Soil & Transplanting
Just about any soil type or quality will do for your bird’s nest snake plant, as long as it’s well-drained.
You may also choose to mix equal parts cactus and standard potting soils.
Adding in perlite or coarse sand can help improve drainage if needed.
This sansevieria variety doesn’t mind being root-bound and should only be repotted every 2 to 5 years at most.
Fresh soil annually will allow the plant to thrive without additional repotting or fertilizing needs.
More on: The Best Soil Mix For Snake Plants
Grooming And Maintenance
Be sure to give your dwarf snake plant a gentle wipe-down with a damp paper towel occasionally to remove any dust.
Trim back any dead or dying leaves as needed, and remove any flower spikes after their blooms have died.
How To Propagate Dwarf Sansevieria
Propagate the dwarf snake plant from rhizomes.
Separate new baby plants and transplant them into new pots.
They also propagate from leaf cuttings, planted base-down. Rooting leaves produces new plants easily.
Finally, you can divide an established plant to create more plants.
More on: Propagating Snake Plants
Dwarf Snake Plant Pests or Diseases
Gold hahnii is drought-tolerant and resistant to most problems when healthy.
An injured or sick plant may become infested by common plant pests such as aphids, mealybugs, and spider mites.
Too much water results in root rot. Too much moisture on the leaves can rot the foliage.
The plant is mildly toxic if ingested, and the sap is known to cause allergic reactions in some individuals.
Suggested Gold Hahnii Uses
As with all sansevieria plants, ‘golden hahnii’ does well in fluorescent lighting. Golden Hanii is well-suited for offices, apartments, and other small spaces. Lower light conditions may not display its full variegation.
It makes an excellent addition to a bedroom table, a kitchen window sill, or bathroom.
In warmer climates, dwarf sansevieria is often grown as a low-maintenance ground cover.