How To Propagate Snake Plant (Sansevieria): 3 Effective Methods

The Sansevieria, a plant commonly known as the Snake Plant or Mother-In-Law’s Tongue, has recently become a popular indoor plant for a good reason. It’s one the easiest plants to propagate!

So how to propagate snake plant? The three most effective methods are outlined below:

  1. Place a cutting in water
  2. Place a cutting in soil
  3. Propagate by dividing the rhizomes

They do take a while to start showing signs of new root growth, so just be patient, and soon you’ll have a propagated Sansevieria.

In this post, we’ll discuss how you can propagate a Sansevieria easily and go over the pros and cons of these three rooting methods!

Snake plant propagation

How To Propagate A Sansevieria In Water

Propagating Sansevieria in water is a fun process — you get to see the roots as they grow and may be lucky enough to see a pup start growing!

How to water propagate your Snake Plant step-by-step:

  1. Use sharp pruning shears to carefully cut off a Sansevieria leaf at the base of the plant where the plant meets the soil
  2. Using the same shears, cut the leaf into 4 – 5 inch segments.
  3. Cut a v-shaped notch from the bottom of the plant (make sure you cut the right side of the plant!).
  4. Place the cuttings on a dish to dry out for a few days — the ends need to callus over. This step is important to prevent the cuttings from rotting, so don’t skip it!
  5. Fill a tall, clean container with sterilized water — fill it with just enough to cover the bottom of the cuttings.
  6. Place the container with cuttings in an area that receives lots of indirect but bright light.
  7. Change the water every few days.
  8. Wait.
  9. Once the leaf has roots, plant the cutting in sand or peat moss and follow usual snake plant care.

The waiting period starts the moment you submerge the ends of the Sansevieria in the water.

Don’t worry if you don’t see any growth — these plants can take months to root and even longer for pups to grow.

You ideally want to wait for the roots to grow at least an inch long before you put them into a sandy peat moss mixture. You can also plant them into succulent soil mixed with perlite or pumice for better drainage.

Pros Of Propagating In Water

Propagating a Sansevieria is super easy! Although it may take some time, watching new roots grow and seeing Sansevieria pups grow from the cuttings is fun.

If you like hydroponic plants, you’ll be happy to know that you can keep them in water. Just remember to change out the water weekly.

Cons Of Propagating In Water

Many variegated varieties of Sansevieria, like ‘Moonshine’, ‘Laurentii’, or ‘Gold Flame’ that have yellow strips may likely revert back to the common Sansevieria and lose the color margins when propagated from leaf cuttings.

How To Propagate A Sansevieria In Soil

Propagating snake plant in soil

If you don’t care to see how the Sansevieria grows in water, you can simply propagate the cuttings directly in the soil.

Here’s how to propagate your Snake Plant in soil step-by-step:

  1. Use sharp pruning shears to carefully cut off a Sansevieria leaf at the base of the plant where the plant meets the soil.
  2. Using the same shears, cut the leaf into 4 – 5 inch segments.
  3. Cut a v-shaped notch from the bottom of the plant (make sure you cut the right side of the plant!)
  4. Place the cuttings on a dish to dry out for a few days — the ends need to callus over. This part is important to prevent the cuttings from rotting, so don’t skip this step!
  5. Place the callused cuttings into a well-draining but moisture-retaining soil — again, try to use a sandy peat moss mixture or succulent soil mixed with perlite or pumice.
  6. Remember to keep the soil moist while the plants are rooting, and cut back on watering when you see new growth.

The original leaf won’t continue to grow unless it’s the tip of cutting.

If you see new leaves starting to emerge from the soil, you can choose to cut back the cutting.

To speed up the plant’s rooting process, you can also dip the ends of the cuttings in Step 3 into the water, followed by your rooting powder.

Then, fill a small pot with soil and directly plant the cutting into the soil — don’t worry about it creating a callus with this method.

Related: Sansevieria Sayuri: Top Tips For This Rare Plant

Pros Of Propagating In Soil

Directly placing the cuttings in the soil is a simple method that doesn’t require you to be as involved in the rooting process as water. This way, you can also mix various Sansevieria varieties in one pot.

Cons Of Propagating In Soil

Propagating in soil has the same problem as propagating leaf cuttings in water — the cuttings growing in the soil may not grow true to the original plants if they have variegated margins or stripes.

It’s also difficult to gauge any root growth because you can’t see it.

Watering snake plant

How To Propagate A Sansevieria By Division

Propagating a plant through division means that you break up a plant’s root ball into two or more parts. This way, both the root and crown of the plant remain intact.

To propagate your Sansevieria through division, you want to:

  1. Remove the Sansevieria you want to divide from the soil — or dig a hole deep enough that you can see the root system.
  2. Use a clean, sharp knife and cut the root — each section should have a root and at least one leaf attached.
  3. Plant the now divided clumps into well-draining, moisture-retaining soil.

This method allows you to keep the plant leaf intact while creating room for new growth as your plant multiplies.

Pros Of Propagating By Division

Using this propagation method means that the Sansevieria essentially remains genetically identical to the parent plant and is your best option if you want to maintain the variegation of the plant.

Cons Of Propagating By Division

You will need a bigger Sansevieria, or’ parent plant’, to divide it.

Snake Plant Propagation Problems

Propagating Snake Plant

Even though propagating Sansevieria is basically foolproof, it might still happen that the plant doesn’t grow.

Why Isn’t My Snake Plant Growing New Roots?

It can happen on occasion. Not every leaf is the same, and some cuttings have a better chance of rooting than others.

Usually, the problem can be solved by giving the plant more time to start rooting.

If you keep the water fresh and the cutting itself doesn’t rot, then roots could still appear — so just keep practicing patience.

Why Is My Snake Plant Cuttings Rotting?

When propagating, you want to keep a close eye on Snake Plant cuttings that start becoming mushy at the site where roots should grow — this is an indication that the cutting is rotting.

Rotting usually happens when you don’t let the cutting create a callus before planting it or putting it in water.

Here’s how you can save your cutting:

  1. When you notice rot, remove the cutting from the water.
  2. Using a pair of sharp shears or a knife, cut the rotten part off.
  3. Leave the cutting out to dry and form a callus.
  4. Place the cutting back into clean water and give it another try.
Sharp shears

If your cuttings start to rot when they’re planted in soil, you want to cut back on watering. Ensure that you plant the Sansevieria (or any plant) in a pot with proper drainage holes.

Another thing to be mindful of is not to plant the cutting in too large a pot. Choose a large pot to fit the roots comfortably but not too large that you have more soil than anything else.

Also Check: Sansevieria Robusta: Complete Plant Care Guide

Conclusion: How To Propagate Snake Plant

There you have it! Three simple ways that you can propagate the Sansevieria. Either place the cuttings in water, in soil or divide them at the root ball.

Also, keep in mind that they can take a long time to root, so just be patient if you’re growing them from cuttings. If you’re growing them through division, your plant should be established in no time.

References:

https://www.thespruce.com

https://homeguides.sfgate.com