A beautiful pot completes a plant. It must be very exciting to pair up a newly purchased plant with a beautiful pot. The snake plant, also known as Mother-in-Law’s tongue, is a gorgeous plant with green, fleshy, and upright leaves.
If you’ve just got yourself a snake plant from the nursery or are planning to repot an existing one, you may be wondering about the right pot size for the plant.
Pot size for snake plant
A general rule to find the right size pot for snake plants is to go for a pot that is 1/3 the size of the roots in both length and width. For fast-growing plants, you can get a pot 2-4 inches bigger. For slow-growing plants, a 1-2 inches bigger pot. Overall, 8-12 inch pot will work just fine.
Different species needs different pot size. Let’s get a clear idea about it.
Large snake plant:
It is only natural that the pot of a large snake plant would be large as well. But, the difference between the plant width and pot width shouldn’t be too much.
If a pot is too big, it’ll only provide more room which can be fatal to snake plants.
If the plant that you have is a fast-growing type, you can go for a pot two to four inches larger than the plant.
This gap will ensure enough room for the plant to grow and spread. For a slow-growing plant, you can choose a pot that’s one or two inches bigger than the plant.
Tall snake plant:
Among many different types of snake plant varieties, the tallest species are known to reach up to 10 to 12 feet in height. Generally, tall snake plant leaves can be anywhere between 6 to 8 feet in height.
If you have a tall variety of snake plants, the leaves will grow quite tall. As the plant gets bigger, it may require to be repotted in a large pot.
Since roots absorb water from the soil, a pot that is 1/3 the size of the root is better for a snake plant. This way, the roots will get enough room to grow and receive water.
If the size is bigger than that, the roots will get too much water which can lead to root rots. Curling of leaves, soft or wilted leaves, and mushy roots – all of these can be signs of root rot in snake plants.
Baby snake plant:
Snake plants can create pups or baby plants from the main plant. These baby plants slowly develop as new plants with their own root system and can be separated from the main plant.
You can repot the baby snake plants in pots slightly bigger than them. Since snake plants grow a lot when they fully mature, it will take time for the baby plants to mature hence small pots will be better for them.
The dwarf variety is the most suitable type to grow in small pots indoors. They go perfectly well on office desks or tabletops and need very little care. You have to be careful with the watering of baby snake plants in small pots.
Small pots drain quickly so the soil may dry too fast. You should make sure that your plant doesn’t stay without water for too long. You also shouldn’t over-water the plants.
What is the best pot for a snake plant? Deep or wide?
You shouldn’t get a pot that is too deep or too wide for a snake plant. Snake plants don’t usually need bigger pots to grow properly.
They love to be snug in their pots. If you get a pot that is too wide, it will only allow the soil to retain more water and increase the risk of root rots.
Whether or not to get a deep pot for a snake plant depends on the root depth of the plant. Some varieties of snake plants grow deep roots that will need slightly deeper pots to spread properly.
But most varieties of snake plants grow smaller roots that require shallow pots to stay happy and healthy.
3 factors that determine pot size for snake plant
There are certain factors responsible for them. Let’s know about them.
The variety and size of the plant:
There are so many different varieties of snake plants out there in nature. Some of them can grow very tall, while some don’t tend to grow much and stay the same for a long time.
The variety and size of the plant should be among the first things you consider while deciding on a pot size for your snake plant.
The plant’s growth rate:
We want nothing to affect the growth cycle of a snake plant. While it’s true that snake plants don’t need frequent watering and as much care as many other houseplants do, you still shouldn’t overlook the health of your snake plant.
There are different varieties of snake plants and some varieties grow out to be a lot bigger than others.
While deciding on the pot size for a snake plant, you need to consider the growth rate of the plant so the pot can sustain the growth and cater to the plant’s needs.
The root growth of the plant:
Some varieties of snake plants grow large roots and may need slightly deeper pots.
But most varieties have small roots that like to be crowded in shallow pots. Usually, large plants have bigger foliage and tend to have deeper roots. While small snake plants have small roots.
How do you know when your snake plant needs a bigger pot?
If the roots start peeking out of the holes below the pot, it means they have grown quite big and can’t contain inside the pot anymore. It’s a sign that you need a slightly bigger pot for the plant.
In this case, though, it’s the depth of the pot that’s more important. Even though the leaves of snake plants live and thrive better when they are crowded, they can grow out of proportion and the pot can become too small for their proper growth.
Maybe it’s time you go for a pot a few inches bigger than the current one.
Tips to choose the best pot for snake plants and how to grow snake plants in them
There are certain things to look out for. Let’s get to know them.
The pot should have holes for proper drainage:
Snake plants need proper drainage to live. Indeed, snake plants don’t die easily, but they do get root rots if proper drainage is not ensured.
Root rot is one of the worst things that can happen to a plant hence it is quite important to let the excess water flow out of the soil.
If you, by any chance, already got yourself pots without holes, you need to drill some holes under the pots to make them suitable for repotting the snake plants.
This will help the plant to absorb all the necessary nutrients from the water while not getting overloaded with it.
Think about the placement of the pot:
The placement of the pot also plays an important role in letting your snake plant grow up beautifully. If you are planning to set up the pot outside, you should take the climate and the environment outside into consideration.
Even though outside plants require low maintenance, the harsh weather they may have to face needs to be taken into account.
Choose a pot that can protect your plant and let it grow. If you have plans to use the snake plant as an ornamental plant to bring life inside your home or office, you can look for decorative pots that will suit the ambiance of the place.
Small potted snake plants can be kept on your office desk or side table in your home.
The material of the pot is important:
The material of the pot is also quite important when it comes to choosing the right pot for your snake plant.
Since snake plants don’t need too much water and require adequate drainage, terracotta pots will work best for planting them. These pots help to strip the moisture out and provide better aeration to the soil.
If you’re planning to place the pot in a dry place, you can give plastic or ceramic pots a try. These materials tend to keep moisture in longer. However, they might be risky if you tend to overwater your plants.
Another good thing can be to use good quality soil mix. You can add perlite to the soil or you can use cactus or succulent soil mix for your plant.
The right size pot for snake plants is considered to be 1/3 the size of the roots. If you are getting a pot for a new plant, you can opt for 1-2 inches bigger than the plant. However, for fast-growing or mature snake plants, you can go for 2-4 inches bigger pots. Overall, 8-12 inch pot will work.