A small variegated Sansevieria trifasciata in my collection

     Sansevieria is a genus of 60 or so hard leaved succulents related to Agave. They are found in tropical Africa, India and Indonesia and several species are popular in cultivation. Like Agaves, Sansevierias are characterized by rosettes of hard succulent leaves, but lack the serrated edges common in Agaves. The leaves can come in several forms; Long and narrow, short and wide, short and cylindrical or long narrow and cylindrical. The leaves are often interestingly patterned and colored and numerous cultivars are available including variegated forms. The usually small dainty white flowers are produced on a tall flower stalk.
     Sansevierias are easy to grow in any well draining cacti and succulent mix. They should be watered moderately while growing and kept dry in winter. They like bright light and even full sun in some areas, and this is neccessary to maintain the best leaf form and color, especially with the variegated forms. They are however very forgiving of poor growing conditions and nearly impossible to kill except by overwatering. Sansevierias spread in the wild by sending out underground stolens, similar to Agaves and Aloes. These usually travel a ways away from the mother plant and in time can produce large colonies. Sansevierias can be propagated by dividing offsets and leaf cuttings, also from seed, though this is a slow process.

I have several species of Sansevieria
Click on a thumbnail below.

Sansevieria trifasciata

Sansevieria pinguicula

Sansevieria cylindrica

Sansevieria francisii

Sansevieria suffruticosa

All images and text are copyright 2005 to present, D.S. Franges, unless otherwise noted.