Succulent plants such as Snake Plants, also called Mother-in-Law’s Tongue, belong to the succulent family. Their resilience allows them to grow upwards of several feet in height in the ideal conditions.
Beautiful evergreen plants, these can not only look great but also keep the air cleaner in your house.
Using some of these around your home can help you significantly reduce the allergy symptoms you experience because nitrogen oxides and formaldehyde are absorbed.
Aside from using the plants in the home, they are also great for office environments, as they do not drop leaves, spread too far or encroach on other areas of the office. You can place them anywhere and leave them to look beautiful.
Snake plants are low maintenance, making them perfect for those without green fingers. They can also make great companions if you are going away for an extended period of time. Their water consumption is lower than that of any other houseplant. To put it in points, they:
- Are low maintenance
- Can grow in most light conditions
- Are long lasting
- React very slowly to mistreatment
- Are really easy to propagate
- Are inexpensive
A Little About Their Root System
They have very shallow roots which are called rhizomes. You may be able to see how healthy your Snake Plant is by looking at the rhizomes. This will also indicate what kind of care the plant needs.
When grown in a rooting container about 24″ deep, Snake Plant roots go only half the distance, thus they are not deep-rooted plants.
Rather than spreading down to the bottom of the pot, rhizomes have roots that grow sideways.
If we apply this concept to Snake Plant watering, then you will see that standing the plant atop water will not provide any benefit, as its roots aren’t deep enough to benefit from it.
Snake Plants may actually suffer if they are left standing in stagnant water. That water may turn stale and start to smell bad.
Snake Plants don’t like it when they are wet or too dry. However, if they are dry, they will grow better than when they are wet.
If you’re planning to water the Snake Plant, be sure to water it in a consistent manner so that its surface is watered evenly.
Make sure you water the plant consistently and keep soil conditions consistent, neither too dry nor too wet.
Why do Some Snake Plants Have no Roots?
You may notice that the Snake Plant does not even have roots, if you take a closer look. It is known that roots are required for plants to survive, so how does the Snake Plant do it?
When a plant has no roots, it may indicate that the plant is diseased. Too much water can cause the plant to have no roots.
Besides fungi, another reason they have no roots is because they are susceptible to them and they have damaged them below the soil line. Rhizoctonia or Pythium may be among the possible species.
It is good to remember that these plants, despite their lack of roots, are not to be given up on.
Even though it may seem as though all hope is lost, you can still take a cutting and regrow another plant. We’ll discuss propagation in a bit.
Our Snake Plant’s leaves should stand up straight and tall, which is an indication that it’s in good health.
It’s not uncommon for the leaves to grow sideways, but the majority are upright.
You can tell if your Snake Plant is sick from its leaves flopping off to the side. Checking its roots simply confirms this – it may not have roots!
There’s a very simple reason why you don’t have roots – that’s overwatering. The roots rot away, and the leaves begin to sag.
In order to determine whether your Snake Plant is healthy, check the leaves. If you can pull them out of the ground and they’re loose when you touch them, your plant most likely needs some help.
Why are the Roots Above the Soil?
Some of my plants occasionally have roots that appear above the ground. The fact of the matter is that this does happen, even when the plant is healthy.
If there is an imbalanced absorption of water, it may occur because the roots are heading off to find more, which is why you see them on the surface of the soil.
Besides absorbing the water for your plant, clay pots can also absorb moisture. Therefore, a different kind of pot may help.
Roots that grow upwards may also be a result of a soil that doesn’t drain well. Try switching to a soil suited to tropical houseplants.
Can we Solve Root Health Issues?
It is regrettable that you can’t save the entire snake plant if its roots have rotted away. If the roots of your snake plant have died, it indicates that they have run out of oxygen.
It’s possible to grow more plants by taking leaves from the plant.
In my opinion, this is a great option because you get several more plants for just one – free plants, plus you get the satisfaction of seeing the new plants grow.
Overwatering your plants will cause root rot, so please be aware of that before you attempt to solve the problem.
If you want your Snake Plants to survive, you shouldn’t water them the way you do to your other house plants, it just won’t work.
The first thing you need to do is let the plant recover if it still has not succumbed to the effects of flooding. This may be the best option if it has not been severely damaged.
Trying to Treat the Plant
It is best to rinse the existing plant a few times a week or in some cases leave it in a sunlit area for a few days.
Repot the plant after removing it from the pot. Use a new pot if possible.
If the roots remain infected, you should cut them away carefully using clean scissors.
Fungicide should be applied to any remaining roots.
Replace the soil with new soil that has good drainage properties.
How to Propagate Your Snake Plant?
The part I really enjoy is growing more plants. Not only does that reward you, it also ensures your garden has a steady supply of plants for you and your friends to enjoy. It is also another way of saving your root-ill snake plants.
With Snake Plants, you can propagate them using the leaves that are already present.
Damaged parts should be removed.
It is good to use a fungicide for the cuts. I like cinnamon because it is natural and I feel that it works quite well. You just rub dry cinnamon on the wounds and leave them for 24 hours.
You need to have a good drainage mix for the pot.
Make sure the leaves are upright in the pot and fill around them with the potting mix.
Water the new leaves just enough to bed them in, then leave them alone.
Until you are satisfied with how it grows, don’t rush it! If possible, place the cuttings in a well-lit area, and only water when they’re dry.
If the plant is healthy, you can pull the leaves gently and they will resist pulling. The plant should be well-established in four to six weeks.
This method of propagation is not always effective; it is not a result of what you do, but of whether the cuttings would root.
You can also make your own potting mixture, so you know what ingredients are used.
For best results, use 3 parts potting soil, 2 parts sand (builder’s sand works well here) and 1 part pumice. Mix well and store in a dry place.
Even though Snake Plants are well-known as hardy plants, they still require some maintenance.
In the event of mistreatment, it will take longer for the plant to show that it’s ill, but eventually it will become sickly.
When the leaves contain too much water the plant becomes mushy and drops over to the side, which causes the roots to rot, causing the plant to die.
One of the advantages of Snake Plants is that they are easy to propagate and can grow in almost any condition, either indoors or outdoors.
Several of these attractive plants can be grown in your home with just a little care and attention.