It is a beautiful looking plant known as the snake plant or sansevieria. If you’re a plant parent, you’re probably aware that having one in your home comes with a number of responsibilities. Taking care of a plant prevents it from catching insects, drying out, drooping, or even dying.
In order to care for a specific plant, a parent must be familiar with its unique characteristics. The emergence of specific problems can affect any plant, and it is essential to know what they are.
The snake plant is no different from any other plant in that if it is not cared for properly, it can suffer from a few issues. One of these major issues is root rot, which can be deadly for snake plants.
Here is all the information you need to know about root rot and how it affects your home. Let’s jump right in!
What Is Root Rot?
The term root rot is used to describe the rotting of roots of plants. There are many reasons why the roots look soft and brownish-black, but it is primarily due to moisture. If you notice root rot, you may even smell its horrible smell. In order to find out if a plant has root rot, you may need to remove it from the soil, but there are many other ways of making this determination.
Signs of Snake Plant Root Rot
Root rot can easily go unnoticed due to its inconspicuous nature. You have to know the signs of an unhealthy plant before you can diagnose it.
If your snake plant suddenly begins to wilt, it is a good idea to lift the plant and examine the roots. Besides wilting your snake plant, less water can also cause it to dry out.
The curled leaves of your plant may be indicative of root rot. Snake plants’ health can be negatively affected by overwatering, which can result in wilting.
Yellow and Soft Leaves
Depending on whether there is too much or too little water, the leaves can turn yellow. In addition, they can turn yellow if they have underlying root rot. Snake plant root rot can also be caused by fungal infections.
Mushy and Black Roots
Having mushy roots could indicate root rot on your snake plant. Snake plant roots shouldn’t be mushy or rather black. When the roots are touched, they should be firm, not mushy and disconnected from the plant. This means there is root rot even if only a few roots show the signs.
Why Does Root Rot Happen?
As soon as you understand why this happens, you can take the necessary steps to prevent it. Preventing disease is better than curing it. Root rot occurs in snake plants for the following reasons:
Overwatering the Snake Plant
The most critical and important point that should be avoided in order to avoid root rot is this. It’s well known that we must water our plants in order for them to live, but did you know that overwatering could be fatal to them?
Snake plants get water accumulated around their roots when they are overwatered. Rather than getting absorbed into the soil, the substance remains on the root’s surface.
Because the plant is completely submerged in water, it struggles to absorb oxygen from the roots. Rot is known to be caused by a lack of oxygen.
Lack of Sufficient Drainage
It is just as important for your snake plant to have adequate drainage as other plants. If you want to plant your plants, make sure the soil is deep and wide enough.
When the pot in which your plant grows does not have holes in its base, the water will not drain. The water will eventually accumulate in the roots, causing them to rot.
Soil with Less Drainage
Snake plants can develop root rot if the soil you planted them in is of low quality. You can increase soil drainage by incorporating sand into it. The other very important thing you should remember is that one-third of your soil should be composted or hummus.
Your plant’s root rot could be caused by fungal infections. Infected soil can infect your plants if it was already contaminated by another plant with the same infection. It is also possible to catch a fungal infection by surrounding infected plants.
Extremely Large Pot
If you select a pot, make sure to choose one with enough width and depth, but do not go overboard by choosing one that is too large. It is considered acceptable to have two extra inches of space, but anything more than that is too much. The root system of the plant will not reach the end of the large pot, so water will become trapped, causing root rot.
If you want your snake plant to survive, you need to keep it at the right temperature. A very low root temperature will cause root rot since the roots will freeze and have difficulty absorbing oxygen.
If the snake plant receives too much fertilizer, it will find it difficult to extract water. Having some fertilizer is healthy, but too much can result in the plant withering and dying.
How to Prevent Root Rot in Snake Plants?
Prevention is better than cure, so try to prevent root rot as much as possible. If you take this proactive approach, you won’t have to take emergency measures in the future.
Repotting Your Plant
The following tips should be kept in mind when you repot your plant.
- Make sure the pot you choose is big enough but not too big.
- It is necessary to cover drainage holes with porous material. Filter paper used for coffee, for example.
- Remove roots which have already been damaged by root rot.
In addition to regular soil, the soil should also have a third fertilizer in it. When it comes to landscaping the last third, use sand. By doing so, the porosity increases. In addition to perlite, if the mixture experienced drainage issues earlier, consider adding sand.
Fresh water is required as soon as you repot your plant. It will feel dry there after repotting because of the lower parts. You don’t want to go overboard, as this can make the root rot worse.
Disinfection and Sterilization
You can use chemicals to disinfect the tools, the roots, and the pot. In this article, you will find details about the event.
In order to prevent root rot, do not let water accumulate within your plants.
How to Save a Snake Plant with Root Rot?
When the snake plant has already developed root rot, you will have to take immediate action in order to save it. Here’s how you can do it:
Snake plants can be propagated by taking a cutting from an old one and planting it in a new pot with healthy soil.
Potassium permanganate must be diluted with large amounts of water. Proceed to apply the solution to the lower parts of the snake plant.
A paste of copper sulfate and chalk
The mixture contains 3 tablespoons chalk that is crushed + 1 teaspoon copper sulphate + 0.5 liters water. Make sure to apply the creamy liquid to the roots affected by root rot, as well as the lower areas of the stem and collar. Once the roots have been slightly dried, the plant can be repotted.
Chalk and Wood Ash
You can either mix them together or apply them directly to your plant’s roots. Whenever you apply a chemical to your plant, remember to wait one week before repotting it. Consequently, the soil will be able to reintegrate the microorganisms.
When a fungal infection has led to root rot, this chemical can be helpful. During the breakdown process in the soil, oxygen is released.
How to Save an Overwatered Snake Plant?
When this occurs, you will need to stop watering the plant immediately. Sunlight is the best environment for keeping snake plants. Plants should be removed from soil and dirt should be cleaned out. Using a sterilized scissor, cut off parts of the root that are infected. Healthy roots should be treated with fungicide. Once the plant has been repotted, it should be in healthy soil.
You do not want your snake plant to encounter root rot, as it could lead to the plant dying, and will increase the amount of work it will take to remove and repot the plant. As a result, you should follow the steps in this article in order to avoid root rot.
There is a bad smell associated with root rot, and other plants may also contract the disease. Now is the time to take a look at your snake plant!