People believe snake plants are unkillable, which is a bit of a myth. Although snake plants tend to be less sensitive than a lot of their houseplant friends, they can still suffer if their environment or care isn’t great. Overwatering, drainage problems, lighting issues, low temperatures, and pest infestation are the main causes of snake plant unhappiness.
Most houseplants suffer from improper watering, and snake plants are no different. Their leaf tips will turn brown, their roots will rot, and eventually their leaves will become mushy and unstable if they are overwatered.
You shouldn’t water your snake plant more than once every two weeks during the growth months. Once a month should be sufficient during the colder months. You should spend some time getting to know your plants since each one is slightly different. You should also pick up your snake plant before and after watering, so you can get an idea of how much it will weigh when it needs water. As well as checking the moisture at the top of the soil before watering, you should also pick up the snake plant before and after watering. When doing this, be careful not to hurt yourself on the leaf tips. We speak from experience here.
We always recommend watering snake plants from the bottom when watering. It will encourage the roots to grow downwards and will make the plant more stable.
It is also possible that your snake plant is dying due to poor drainage in its pot. While you may be watering correctly, if your pot is not draining the water properly, it could cause the soil to become waterlogged.
Mix a small amount of perlite into your soil to increase drainage, as this will make it easier for water to flow through your pots’ drainage holes (make sure your pots have drainage holes as well).
Another easy step is to add a few small stones or pebbles to the bottom of your pots, this will ensure that the drainage holes are not blocked by soil or loose material.
Snake plants require the right balance to thrive. They are low-light plants, but particularly dark corners will stunt their growth, meaning their pattern will become bland and less prominent over time. If you notice that your snake plant leaves are drooping a little, this may be because it is not getting enough light. This won’t often be the cause of death for your snake plant as long as it gets some sunshine in the day.
In fact, a snake plant in too much sun is more likely to suffer from damage. Snake plants can tolerate a variety of lighting conditions, but they dislike direct sunlight for more than an hour at a time. It is unfortunately irreversible for the leaves to be burned and dried by direct sunlight.
Your snake plant might receive too much sunlight if it is placed next to a south-facing window. Consider moving your plant further away from the window, or to an east or west-facing window.
Snake plants can also suffer from cold temperatures and drafts. Cold air is not good for them, so make sure that it is not placed near drafty doors or windows. Although the temperature of your home may be perfect for your snake plant, drafts from outside may be colder and harm your plant’s health. To check the temperature of your snake plant, you can always use a digital thermometer.
Pest infestation is a slightly less common reason why your snake plant might be dying. Your plant may be infested with mealybugs. Mealybugs are covered in white cotton-like material and are usually found at the bottom of the leaves, in the most protected areas of the plant.
The whole snake plant should be given a shower if you find mealybugs on it. They have hardy leaves, so they can withstand the shower better than some other more delicate plants. To fight the infestation, you should also use an organic insecticide on your snake plant.
If you notice any pests on your other plants in the room, check them out as well. Snake plants (and other infected plants) should be kept away from any other houseplants, as you don’t want the mealybugs to spread.