What are the best plants for a snake terrarium? Snakes enjoy having live plants in their enclosures. Enhancing the naturalistic appearance of the vivarium, they improve its aesthetic appeal. By dealing with your snake’s nitrogen waste, they aid in waste management. These tree-dwelling snakes can provide shelter and comfort for some species. However, you do need to choose non-toxic and snake-safe plants. A snake’s vivarium should be filled with non-toxic plants like spider plants, jade plants, pothos, bromeliads, bamboo, cacti, orchids, snake plants, peperomia, African violets, and ponytail plants. All plants need to be healthy and free of insects.
It is important that snake enclosures have a source of enrichment. Some snakes — such as ball pythons, corn snakes, boa constrictors — are likely to benefit from these live plants. Other snakes should avoid these plants. Flowers such as daffodils, dumbcane, voodoo lily, English Ivy, locusts, peace lilies, wandering jew, tulips, and Virginia creeper cause snakes illness or are invasive.
What Are Safe Plants For Snakes?
Adding live plants to your snake’s terrarium will make it more appealing. However, you can’t just put any plant into a terrarium without determining its toxicity to reptiles, its ability to invade an enclosed space, and its requirements for humidity, heat, and lighting.
Plants For Humid Enclosures
What are the best plants for a snake terrarium? Plants in this category are suitable for corn snakes, boa constrictors, some types of king snakes, as well as Burmese pythons. Temperatures between 29 and 30 degrees Celsius are ideal, while temperatures below 18 degrees Celsius during the night don’t threaten their health.
There are a number of plants that do well in humid, tropical environments, including:
- Sanseveria trifasciata (snake plant)
- Peacock plant
- Bromeliads (without spines)
- Corn plants
- Earth stars
- Chinese evergreen
- Ponytail palms
- Rosary vine
- Dwarf schefflera
A terrarium with these plants should have somewhere between two and four plant lights, depending on the width of the cage. If your snake needs UVB lights, you can use these, otherwise you can simply use the plant lights. Be sure that the UVB light is installed properly in combination with the other two to assure that your snake is receiving enough exposure.
Plants For Low Humidity Enclosures
The following plants are suitable for enclosures with snakes that don’t have high humidity requirements or like their environment to be relatively dry.
These plants store water in their stems. Because of their low water and humidity requirements, they are excellent candidates for dry-climated terrariums:
- Bromeliads (avoid types with spines)
- Elephant trees
- Ceropegias vines
- Dwarf aloe
- Lace aloe
- Climbing aloe
- Cacti without thorns
- Ponytail palms
- Cow or oxtongue bowtie
In addition to being low-water and low-humidity plants, these are air-purifying plants. Many snake owners favor mother-in-law’s tongues or Sansevieria trifciata. The soil around snake plants rots easily, so they should only be watered when they are completely dry. In spite of their tolerance to full sun, indirect sunlight is ideal for your snake’s terrarium, making them an ideal choice.
There are several species of snake plants that are suitable for use in snake enclosures, including:
- TrifasciataKirkii pulchra
Tillandsia (Air Plant)
There are about 650 species of perennial flowering plants in the family Bromeliaceae in Tillandsia. The silvery leaves of Tillandsia cling to barks, bare rocks, tree branches, or anything else they can find. Tillandsia are some plants that grow in desert soil with minimal roots.
A variety of Tillandsia is suitable for epiphytes or soil planting:
Many of these plants are pure air plants covered in large scales. They don’t have any roots and can thrive on rough tree barks or trunks, joints of branches and even in man-made decorations kept in your snake’s enclosure. Using Air Plants for snake enclosures can create a colorful display without placing them in soil or plant matter.
The followings are air plants that prefer bright light and regular soaking in water:
How to take care of air plants? Unlike other houseplants, air plants require a different type of care. To care for your plants correctly, soak them for at least 20-30 minutes after purchasing them. After soaking the plants, note their color and size. This is an indication of how well they are doing. After you have placed your air plant inside the snake’s vivarium, let it dry.
You should mist your air plant every four to five days with water. Snake enclosures with closed doors should allow the plant to retain water for longer periods of time. Airflow and humidity in the cage play a role in how much water the plant needs. Direct sunlight should not be allowed to reach these best plants for a snake terrarium. They prefer indirect sunlight, so you can place them inside hollowed-out logs, or even vivarium decorations artificially placed inside your snake’s enclosure.