Moonshine Snake Plant

How to Care For The Rare Moonshine Snake Plant

I know I have talked about my love for the snake plant before. I truly can’t get enough of this gorgeous species. The Moonshine snake plant, or Sansevieria moonshine is a succulent that needs very little care.

It’s also called the Sansevieria Trifasciata Moonshine. The plant grows in clumps with leaves that are stiff and flat. The leaves are a light silvery green with pointed tips helps to identify the moonshine snake plant.

This plant can survive for weeks without water, so don’t worry if you forget to water it every now and then! This article will cover how to care for your moonshine snake plant so you can enjoy its subtle green color year-round!

Overview of the Moonshine snake plant

The moonshine snake plant is a succulent, meaning its parts store water. This is why it’s so easy to care for. This moonshine plant originates from East Africa and enjoys the warm temps. This helps it survive in areas with less rain and fewer nutrients in the soil.

The leaves capture sunlight to produce energy for the plant. The moonlight snake also has roots that take in water and nutrients from the soil. You will want to make sure it gets enough indirect light so it keeps its beautiful silvery leaves healthy.

Origin and History of the Sansevieria Moonshine

The moonshine plant is part of the Sansevieria family with more than 70 varieties. The snake plant’s full name is dracaena trifasciata, but was known as sansevieria trifasciata until 2017 when it was reclassified to the dracaena genus. Most folks will still reference as the sansevieria however.

The moonlight snake plant originates from East Africa. In the late 1800s or early 1900s, a farmer exported it to Europe and North America as an ornamental plant.

The original name “Snake Plant” came from a Canadian nursery owner who first introduced it in 1883. The Sansevierias have thick, succulent stems that branches out into leaves. The moonshine plant has thick leaves can grow up to three feet long.

Varieties of the snake plant

There are many different kinds of sansevierias to choose from. Approximately 125 varieties in fact. All with their own unique flair and some far more rare than others.

The Sansevieria moonshine has several cultivars. The most common variety is the cultivar ‘Laurentian Star’. You can also purchase a slightly taller version of this species from nurseries called Sansevieria laurentii var. angustifolia .

Both types have thick leaves that vary in shape, but the standard variety holds its leaves upright. The Sansevieria laurentii var. angustifolia has longer, more drooping leaves.

Also called the moonlight snake plant, Sansevieria trifasciata sports multiple light-green leaves that grow upright. It makes a beautiful floor plant due to its size and color.

Its stalks are thick with fleshy leaves up to three feet long! The snake plants are nearly indestructible, making them an ideal addition to your home or office. There are many different kinds of sansevierias to choose from. All with their own unique flair.

Moonshine Snake Plant Characteristics

Sansevieria moonshine plant has characteristic features that make it easy to identify. Its leaves are green, stiff and grow upright like a spear.

A broad leaf base attaches to the stem, with narrower upper leaves branching off of it. Plants can reach up to five feet tall with two-foot-long leaves! Each succulent plant leaf is firm with sharp edges. The plant has a braided stem that grows thick and short, giving it an exotic look.

Sansevieria Trifasciata prefers warm temperatures at 70 – 80F during the day. It’s OK for nighttime temperatures to drop down to 60F, but you need to protect your plant from frost. If grown indoors, place your plant in a room that’s well-lit because it needs sunlight to grow.

If you’re growing the plant outdoors, make sure there is enough sunlight for it to survive. The moonlight snake prefers warm temperatures all year long, making it ideal for growing indoors or outdoors!

Overview of moonshine snake plant requirements

Moonshine snake plantThe moonshine snake plant requires very little care to survive for years! This durable succulent only needs water every week or two during spring and summer.

Water the plant thoroughly after planting or potting it, then allow the top 1/3 of soil to dry out before watering again. If you live in an area with mild summers, you might not need to water your plant for a month!

In fall and winter, water the moonlight snake plant once every two months. If you live in a warmer climate, though, you might need to water it weekly or biweekly during these months.

In hotter climates with lower humidity levels, consider using a moisture meter to check soil moisture before watering your plant. It’s normal for the soil to remain dry during these months.

Light requirements for snake plants

The moonshine plant needs bright sunlight to thrive. Place your plant in an area that gets six hours of direct sunlight per day, or eight hours for higher light plants. You can also place it under fluorescent lights indoors if you want to grow the plant indoors year-round. If grown outdoors, rest assured that this succulent can handle lows down to 40F.

If you’re growing the moonlight snake plant outdoors, make sure it has plenty of sun exposure on hot summer days. It can survive in full and partial sun, but avoid planting it low or in the shade where temperatures get hotter than 80F. The leaves can turn dark, losing its pretty silver leaves if it does not get enough sunlight.

If grown indoors with fluorescent lights, keep your plant less than 12 inches away from the lights to prevent it from getting leggy.

Watering requirements for Snake plants

The moonlight snake plant thrives in well-draining soil, so it’s normal for the top layer of soil to dry out after watering. Make sure you soak the entire root ball every time you water your plant and always allow excess water to drain from the pot through holes in its bottom.

Excess moisture can cause root rot in your plant, so avoid having your plant sit in water for an extended time.

The moonlight snake plant grows in warm climates all over the world. In its natural habitat, it can survive on rainfall alone or in areas with humid, wet climates – avoid overwatering! It prefers temperatures that range from 70F to 90F during the day and 55F to 80F at night for optimal growth.

The best places to grow the snake plant are in small to medium pots on decks, patios and porches.

The moonlight snake plant is somewhat rare in its natural habitat. However, it’s common in cultivation due to its commercial value as an indoor or outdoor ornamental plant.

Since it’s easy to maintain with low water requirements, the moonlight snake plant is often ornamental.

Soil requirements for snake plants

The soil you use to grow the moonlight snake plant doesn’t matter too much. It can survive in most soils, including acidic soil or alkaline soil with a pH level higher than 7.0.

You can mix in some all-purpose potting mix if your regular garden soil contains sulfur, which some people claim repels succulents.

If you live in an area with sulfur in the soil, try mixing in 5 to 10 percent peat moss into the soil mix. Avoid using potting soil entirely unless it’s 100 percent sterile and free of any fertilizers or chemicals that might burn your plant’s roots!

Mixing sand into the potting soil will also help provide better drainage since succulents prefer well-draining potting mixtures.

Location requirements in the US for snake plants

The moonlight snake plant is widely grown across the US in both commercial and residential landscapes. It’s ideal for planting in full to partial sun, but it can also survive low-light conditions indoors if you place your pot near a window or skylight that gets enough light during the day.

This succulent doesn’t need much water, so growing the moonlight snake plant in warm climates with low humidity levels is best. If you live in an area that experiences cool winters with rainfall throughout the year, don’t worry – your plant will still do fine. Just avoid overwatering!

If grown outdoors, allow at least three feet of space between your moonlight snake plant and other succulents, or you’ll risk getting them confused.

Temperature requirements in different US zones

It’s hard to grow your moonlight snake plant outside in the colder months of the year due to temperature and humidity requirements.

However, you can keep it growing well indoors by protecting it from frost and covering up developing flower buds with a paper bag or old sock to prevent damage.

If you live in an area that experiences temperatures below 40 F, you need to protect your moonlight snake plant from the cold! The minimum temperature it can survive is 35 F, but temperatures below 25 F will cause the plant’s leaves to change color and drop off.

Humidity requirements

The humidity level for your moonlight snake plant doesn’t matter as much as its temperature requirements. It can survive in areas with dry climates and is even drought-tolerant since it’s better at storing water than other succulents!

However, if you live in a humid region, try to mist your plant once or twice a week to prevent fungal growth on its leaves.

Air circulation requirements

The best place to grow the moonlight snake plant is outside in a sunny, windy area with lots of room for these succulents to spread out.

Wind and sun will prevent the leaves from developing fungal problems like powdery mildew or leaf spots. You can also grow these succulents indoors near an open window for a fresh breeze.

Water quality requirements

The moonlight snake plant doesn’t require much water to survive. If you place your pot near a sunny window, however, it might need some extra water in the summertime since it’s getting more light than when grown outdoors.

On the other hand, if you grow your moonshine snake plant outside, keep its soil dry, or it’ll develop root rot from overwatering.

When you water your moonlight snake plant, make sure the excess water drains out of its drainage holes to prevent root rot within an hour! If your soil is dry after watering, wait another few months since these plants are drought-tolerant.

It’s still a good idea to water your succulent at least once every two months if it’s not getting enough light.

Plant Feeding/Fertilizer Requirements

If you want your moonlight snake plant to grow bushier and larger, it’s best to fertilize it every three weeks in the springtime by adding a little bit of water-soluble fertilizer into its water.

When growing succulents indoors, don’t overfeed them since they’re not getting enough sun to provide energy for new growth. Cut back on watering and wait a few weeks before adding fertilizer to avoid overfertilizing your succulent.

Moonshine Snake Planting Requirements

To grow the most effective moonlight snake plant, you need to provide it with plenty of room. It can be grown in groups since it will form a cluster over time!

Just make sure each moonshine plant has enough space for its roots to grow, or they’ll get cramped together and look ugly. If you plan on moving your plants around frequently, try planting them in plastic pots instead of clay since they’re much lighter.

Do not bury the moonlight snake plant’s neck! This can damage or kill it since its leaves grow directly from its base. These succulents hold a lot of water in their leaves and stems – so don’t let their necks sit in water for too long.

When planting these snake plants indoors, try to give them as much sun as you can! They’ll grow shorter and bushier when they’re getting enough light, unlike most other succulents, which grow larger under the sun.

When repotting your plant, make sure the roots aren’t exposed! If you can’t see any of the roots on your plant, then it’s too deep and might get sunburned.

Pruning Requirements

You can cut the leaves off with pruners when you want to make you are succulent look more formal or when it starts growing too large for its pot.

Overcrowding can ruin the roots so when you cut out leaves be sure to be strategic to give enough room for the roots to grow healthy.

If your moonlight snake plant has grown too large for its pot, you can cut off some of its leaves and even part of its base. Just make sure that its neck isn’t buried because this will kill the succulent!

Propagating Requirements

You can propagate your moonlight snake plant by allowing it to form side shoots close to the base of the main plant. Just don’t wait too long to get rid of these shoots since they’ll get in the way if they grow tall enough to reach up past other parts of your succulent. Side shoots often happen when you pinch or prune your moonlight snake plant.

When propagating your succulent, allow the top half to form its root system before you separate it from its parent! Otherwise, it’s much more likely that the newly-separated side shoot will die before it can develop a root system of its own.

If you’re trying to propagate your moonlight snake plant by planting its cuttings, make sure you wrap it up in some type of rooting compound like vermiculite or perlite. These compounds will help to hold the succulent in place while its roots form.

You can propagate multiple plants from a single leave. These do propagate slowly but its well worth the wait!

Re-planting Requirements

If you’re propagating your moonlight snake plant and it hasn’t developed any roots yet, paper towels or toilet paper will work just fine. You can also try placing them on top of some moist sand to get the process started.

If you allow your moonlight snake plant to become root-bound in its pot, it’ll grow shorter and bushier since it won’t have as much room to grow. If you’ve been pruning your moonlight snake plant, remember that it’s going to be a lot more compact once you re-plant into its new home!

Re-potting Frequency

How often you need to re-pot your moonlight snake plant will depend on how much time it spends growing in each container. If you tend to give your plants a lot of free time, then your snake plant will need to be re-potted every year.

However, if you have a plant that spends most of its time in dormancy, it can probably get away with being re-potted only every 2 or 3 years.

When you re-pot your moonshine snake plant, make sure to leave about an inch between the top of its root system and the surface of the soil in your new container! Succulents like to be shallow-rooted, but they also need plenty of room for their roots to spread out.

You should re-pot your moonshine snake plant every couple of years because it’ll give it more time to grow before you notice its roots starting to grow out of the drainage hole. If you don’t re-pot your succulent until its roots become so big they start to pose a problem, you’ll likely need to do it more often than every couple of years.


If your moonshine snake plant gets too dry, its leaves can develop brown tips. This is caused by the plant losing water at an excessive rate due to dry soil! Keep your succulent hydrated, and you’ll reduce the chance of this problem occurring.

Although it’s fairly rare, one of the most common problems that will affect your moonlight snake plant is root rot. If the roots of your succulent become too moist, they can quickly fall victim to fungal diseases.

If you notice that the leaves of your moonshine snake plant are turning yellow and falling off at an excessive rate, it’s likely being attacked by pests such as mealybugs or mites. However, it’s important to remember that over-watering can be an even bigger problem!

If you forget to water your succulent for a long enough period, it’ll eventually start developing symptoms of overwatering. Although these symptoms will differ depending on the species, you’re most likely going to see yellow leaves and black spots form on its leaves.

If you start noticing that pests are attacking your moonlight snake plant, then try spraying it with a mixture of water and rubbing alcohol! This is an excellent way to kill off pests without making your succulent too stressed out.


This beautiful perennial plant is toxic if ingested. While it might be more on the milder sider, it does contain saponins. These are chemical produced by the plant to protect it from fungi and insects. This chemical can cause stomach upset in pets and kids.

If you notice your dog or cat foaming or excessively licking while around this plant, it’s best to call a vet for care. If they tend to try and nibble on this plant, take it away and keep the plant away from their reach.

FAQ/Common questions asked about moonlight snake plant

Q: Is the moonlight snake plant poisonous?

A: Although its sap is toxic, it’s not considered to be poisonous. So if your pet accidentally ingest some of the sap by chewing on the leaves of this succulent, it won’t result in death but it may induce stomach issues.

Q: What kind of soil does a moonlight snake plant need?

A: If you want to use regular potting soil, be sure to mix in some sand and perlite. Topsoil can also be used to give your moonlight snake plant the nutrients it needs!

Q: Which part of a moonlight snake plant is poisonous?

A: Although its leaves are considered toxic, they’re not the only part of this succulent that’s poisonous. Just like the sap it produces, any part of a moonlight snake plant can be considered poisonous when ingested!

Q: Do moonlight snake plants need to be watered every day?

A: When you first get your moonlight snake plant, and it has no leaves, water it once every couple of days. After its leaves have sprouted, reduce watering to once per week.

Q: How can I tell if my moonlight snake plant is getting too much water?

A: Excessive watering will cause your succulent’s roots to rot! If you notice that the soil of your plant is constantly wet, then you’re over-watering it.

Q: How can I tell if my moonlight snake plant is getting too little water?

A: If your succulent’s leaves begin to curl up, then it’s probably not receiving enough moisture! However, the opposite condition of dryness won’t harm this hardy plant, so you can also take a wait-and-see approach when trying to figure out if it needs more water!

Q: What kind of fertilizer should I use for my moonlight snake plant?

A: You can fertilize your succulent by using specific liquid succulent food instead of regular plant food. When you give it the specific fertilizer, mix in some regular plant food too, so your plant’s soil has multiple nutrients in it!

Q: How can I fertilize my moonlight snake plant?

A: You can fertilize your succulent by using specific liquid succulent food instead of regular plant food. When you give it the specific fertilizer, mix in some regular plant food too, so your plant’s soil has multiple nutrients in it!

Q: How can I keep my moonlight snake plant healthy?

A: Make sure to water it frequently if you live in a dry region. If your succulent has too little water, its leaves will begin to curl up. If you overwater you plant, it can turn yellow and get mushy. Help reduce the risk of getting hurt by your succulent’s leaves by wearing gloves when you’re watering or handling them.

Q: How can I make my moonlight snake plant produce more leaves?

A: The best time to avoid your succulent from producing any new leaves is between August and January! If you want your moonlight snake plant to grow faster, increase the amount of sunlight you give it.

Q: What’s the reason for my moonlight snake plant’s leaves curling up?

A: You’re probably underwatering your succulent! If you see that its leaves are beginning to curl up, increase the amount of water it gets.

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