Snake plant is most commonly popular as the Saint George’s sword, mother-in-law’s tongue, viper’s bowstring hemp, devil’s tongue, jinn’s tongue, bow string hemp, snake tongue, among other names. There are two main varieties: wild type plant have stiff, erect, scattered, lance-shaped leaves while the bird’s nest plant grow in rosettes. Growth is comparatively slow and the plant will last for many years.
Snake Plant or Sansevieria is a historically recognize genus of flowering plants, native to Africa, notably Madagascar, and southern Asia. Now included in the genus Dracaena on the basis of molecular phylogenetic studies. Several former Sansevieria species are popular houseplants in temperate regions, with Dracaena trifasciata the most widely sold.
It is now use predominantly as an ornamental plant, outdoors in warmer climates, and indoors as a houseplant in cooler climates. It is popular as a houseplant because it is tolerant of low light levels and irregular watering. During winter it needs only one watering every couple of months. They can rot from over-watering, so it is important that they are potted in well-drained soil, and not over-watered. They need to be re-potted or split at the root from time to time because they will sometimes grow so large that they break the pot they are growing in.
In China, a pot is use for the plant generally ornament with dragons and phoenixes. In Korea, pot sansevierias are common present as a gift during opening ceremonies of businesses or other auspicious events. Furthermore in Barbados, it is also popularly refer to as the “money plant”, with the belief that the person having it will always have money. Also in Africa, the leaves of former Sansevieria species are use for fiber production. In some species, e.g. Dracaena hanningtonii, the plant’s sap has antiseptic qualities, and the leaves are use for bandages in traditional first aid.
According to a NASA Clean Air Study, along with other plants such as golden pothos and corn plant, snake plant is capable of purifying air by removing some pollutants such as formaldehyde, xylene, and toluene. Sansevierias use the crassulacean acid metabolism process, which absorbs carbon dioxide at night, although oxygen is releases during daylight. Nighttime absorption of CO2 purportedly makes them especially suitable bedroom plants. However, since the leaves are potentially poisonous if ingest, they are not usually recommend for children’s bedrooms.
According to feng shui, because the leaves of sansevierias grow upwards, the plants can be use for feng shui purposes. Some believe that having sansevierias near children helps reduce coarseness. Although care must be note to ensure the child cannot reach the plant’s poisonous leaves. Others recommend placing pots near the toilet tank to counter the drain-down vibrations.
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