How to Trim a Snake Plant?

House plants can give any space a natural and refreshing look and liven up its ambiance. Keeping plants indoors is a great idea as they are natural air purifiers. They are also great mood boosters and stress relievers. Thus, indoor plants make people both healthy and happy.

But what kind of plant can you keep indoors? There are many different kinds of indoor plants one can choose from. These plants differ from outdoor plants as they can tolerate humidity and low light conditions. They also grow less rapidly as compared to outdoor plants.

A great indoor plant choice is the Dracaena Trifasciata or the snake plant. This plant is a very common indoor plant kept by many plant enthusiasts in their homes. An unofficial name for the snake plant is also ‘Mother-in-law’s Tongue. This name was coined due to the plant’s appearance as it has long, pointy, sword-like leaves.

These leaves are a reminder of a mother-in-law’s sharp tongue! The leaves are also green in color with a yellow border. This plant’s height can range from six inches to eight feet. The snake plant is native to the Asian region as well as Africa.

How to Care for Your Snake Plant

Most people like to keep the snake plant in containers as it grows very well in small places. This plant also flourishes in warm weather and thus is the perfect choice for warm countries. The snake plant is known to struggle in cold weather. You also have to be careful when watering this plant. Overwatering the snake plant can damage its roots.

When keeping the plant indoors, it can be kept in indirect sunlight. Even if the amount of indirect sunlight is minimal, the snake plant can adjust.

This plant thrives in temperatures between 70 to 90 degrees. Very cold winters and frost can badly damage the plant. You can use a very mild fertilizer when maintaining this plant. Avoid fertilizing this plant in winter.

Why Trim Your Snake Plant?

Snake plants can grow very tall. When they grow out, they start spreading outward. This is why they need to be regularly trimmed. It’s also important to assess the plant and check for signs of damage. If your plant is neat and undamaged, you can begin pruning it.

At times, snake plants start looking crowded in pots. If the plant starts growing out and its container becomes small, plant growth can get stunted. That’s why it’s important to trim the plant’s leaves and reduce their size.

Also, when the leaves start growing beyond a certain height, the tallest leaves need to be pruned so the plant can maintain a certain average height.

Sometimes, the snake plant’s leaves can also get damaged. This can be due to exposure to excessive sunlight or overwatering the plant. This plant can also get damaged due to a pest infestation.

When these leaves get damaged, the harm is irreversible. This means you have to prune the damaged leaves, and healthy leaves will grow in their place.

Trimming your snake plant is also important to perfect its shape. Trimming is essential to make your snake plant look a certain way. If the plant is not cut and attended to, it will look neglected, droopy, and overgrown.

Regularly trimming your plant will give it a tidy and symmetrical look. Care and attention can not only make the snake plant look beautiful, but it can also extend its life by years.

Read this: Can You Grow Dieffenbachia From Cuttings?

How to Trim Snake Plant

When it comes to how to trim snake plants, there are specific ways to do so. You can also trim your plant for different reasons.

To Reduce the Plants Size

When you are pruning the snake plant to reduce its size, begin trimming the leaves around the edge of the plant. As plants grow from the center, the leaves around the edges will be the oldest. Make sure to cut the plant as close to the ground as possible. Hence start by removing leaves near the plant’s base.

Once you start removing leaves from the edges of the plant, your snake plant will become narrow and might also decrease in height. If the plants’ height starts falling, you will also have to trim the taller leaves to make them look even.

To Give it a Neat Appearance

Trimming to make your snake plant look neat is not a very time-consuming task. This is because snake plants don’t have many bad leaves. You have to see if you come across any old, sick, or dried-out leaves; you can cut them.

If the snake plant shows signs of disease, ensure pruning debris is not littered near any other plant, as the infection can spread.

To Shape the Plant

You can also prune your snake plant to improve its shape. Thoroughly examine the plant for blades that are faulted. Cut out those blades in mind to be as close to the base as possible.

You might have to cut off many sheets to give your snake plant a nice shape. Make sure you don’t snip off more than one-third of the foliage. Cutting off too much can impact your plant’s health.

The snake plant is a slow-growing plant. If you cut off too much during the pruning process, it will be hard for the plant to recover its lost portions.

When to Trim Your Snake Plant?

If a few leaves are in poor condition, you can trim them any time during the year. But if you want to reduce the size of your snake plant by cutting off a large part of its foliage, it’s best to do it in the spring or summer.

Growth is quick at that time as the plant is more vital. Your plant will recover faster from the cuts once you have finished trimming or pruning your plant. It’s also a good idea to rinse it after trimming.

Also check: Houseplants That Like Wet Soil

Benefits of the Snake Plant

The snake plant has numerous benefits. This plant is excellent at purifying the air in indoor spaces. It also removes allergens from rooms and eliminates toxic pollution. This makes this plant a great choice for keeping in houses as it benefits all residents.

The snake plant is also known to convert carbon dioxide released at night into oxygen. This means keeping this plant indoors ensures high-quality oxygen in the room, thus keeping indoor residents fresh at all times. The snake plant can also be used to treat minor ailments. It also keeps toxins and pollutants that can trigger harmful diseases such as cancer at bay.

The plant also enhances mood through its therapeutic properties. You can use it to improve the indoor environment of schools, hospitals, offices, or any other space where people regularly deal with stress.

Another great advantage of the snake plant is that it is very easy to take care of and maintain. It can be planted in a shady spot anywhere, indoors.

Many people also use the snake plant to reduce minor ailments such as skin bruises and inflammation. It is also used to reduce headaches and strengthen the immune system.

Tools Needed to Trim Your Snake Plant

To trim or prune your snake plant successfully, you will require a sharp knife. A pair of scissors can also do the job. As these tools are quite common, you won’t have much trouble trimming the plant.

Also, make sure you disinfect these tools before you begin trimming. This will ensure diseases are not transmitted to your snake plant.

Wondering how to disinfect your trimming tools? Disinfecting the tools is a simple process that does not consume much time. Also, you don’t need to disinfect your tools when you begin trimming your plant. Disinfecting once in a while is enough.

The most common method of sanitizing your tools is cleaning them with alcohol. Specifically, you will wipe the tools’ blades with alcohol. Put a piece of cloth in the alcohol and let it soak.

Then smoothly rub the cloth over the blades. Let the tools sit for a few minutes until they are effectively disinfected, then begin pruning your plant.

You can also disinfect your tools by using bleach. Put the tools in a mixture of water and bleach and let the tools soak for at least half an hour.

Concluding Thoughts

Snake plants are well known for their interesting shapes, beneficial qualities, and hardiness. However, these plants tend to grow very tall and require frequent trimming. A snake plant can grow up to five feet within indoor spaces. Not everyone has the space for that! Hence you can implement the above-listed techniques on how to trim snake plant to effectively manage the plant.

Snake plants should be trimmed or pruned in the summer or spring months so they can easily recover from lost foliage. These plants should also be attended to with clean and disinfected trimming tools. Disinfecting your tools thoroughly is essential, so your plant does not catch diseases.

Once you know how to trim and prune your snake plant, attending to the plants’ other needs is quite simple, as these plants are usually low maintenance.

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