How to Put Snake Plant in Water: A Comprehensive Guide

Snake plants, also known as Sansevieria, are popular houseplants known for their striking appearance and low maintenance requirements. These plants are native to West Africa and have become a favorite among plant enthusiasts due to their ability to thrive in a variety of conditions. One common method of propagating snake plants is by placing them in water. In this article, we will provide a step-by-step guide on how to put snake plants in water, along with valuable insights and tips to ensure successful propagation.

Why Put Snake Plant in Water?

Before we delve into the process of putting snake plants in water, it’s important to understand why this method is preferred by many plant enthusiasts. Water propagation offers several advantages:

  • Easy and accessible: Water propagation is a simple and accessible method that doesn’t require any specialized equipment or materials.
  • Quick results: Snake plants propagated in water often root faster compared to other methods, allowing you to enjoy new plants sooner.
  • Visual appeal: Watching the roots grow in water can be a visually appealing process, especially for plant lovers who enjoy observing the growth and development of their plants.
  • Cost-effective: Water propagation eliminates the need for purchasing additional soil or planting containers, making it a cost-effective method.

Step-by-Step Guide: How to Put Snake Plant in Water

Now that we understand the benefits of water propagation, let’s dive into the step-by-step process of putting snake plants in water:

Step 1: Select a Healthy Snake Plant

Start by selecting a healthy snake plant that you wish to propagate. Look for a plant with vibrant leaves and no signs of disease or pests. Healthy plants have a higher chance of successful propagation.

Step 2: Prepare a Container and Water

Choose a container that is large enough to accommodate the snake plant’s roots. A glass jar or vase works well for water propagation, as it allows you to observe the root growth. Fill the container with room temperature water, ensuring that it covers at least a few inches of the plant’s base.

Step 3: Cut a Healthy Leaf

Using a clean and sharp knife or scissors, cut a healthy leaf from the snake plant. Make sure the leaf is at least a few inches long and has a clean cut. Avoid using leaves that are damaged or diseased, as they may not propagate successfully.

Step 4: Place the Leaf in Water

Gently place the cut end of the leaf into the water, ensuring that the base is submerged. The leaf should be positioned in a way that the cut end is in contact with the water, while the rest of the leaf remains above the water surface.

Step 5: Provide Adequate Light and Temperature

Place the container with the snake plant leaf in a location that receives bright, indirect light. Snake plants thrive in moderate to bright light conditions, but direct sunlight can be too harsh for the newly propagated leaf. Additionally, maintain a temperature between 60-85°F (15-29°C) for optimal growth.

Step 6: Change the Water Regularly

It’s important to change the water regularly to prevent the growth of bacteria or mold. Every 7-10 days, empty the container, rinse it thoroughly, and refill it with fresh room temperature water. This helps maintain a clean and healthy environment for the propagating leaf.

Step 7: Wait for Root Development

Be patient and allow time for the snake plant leaf to develop roots. This process can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, depending on various factors such as temperature, light, and the health of the leaf. Keep an eye on the water level and ensure that the base of the leaf remains submerged.

Step 8: Transplant the Rooted Leaf

Once the snake plant leaf has developed a sufficient number of roots (at least a few inches long), it is ready to be transplanted into soil. Prepare a well-draining potting mix and gently remove the leaf from the water. Plant the rooted leaf in the soil, ensuring that the roots are covered and the leaf is positioned upright. Water the soil lightly and place the newly transplanted snake plant in a location with bright, indirect light.

Tips for Successful Water Propagation

While the process of putting snake plants in water is relatively straightforward, there are a few tips that can increase your chances of successful propagation:

  • Choose healthy leaves: Select leaves that are free from damage or disease, as they have a higher chance of successful propagation.
  • Use room temperature water: Cold water can shock the plant and hinder root development. Always use room temperature water for water propagation.
  • Provide adequate light: Snake plants require moderate to bright indirect light for optimal growth. Ensure that the propagating leaf receives enough light to support root development.
  • Change the water regularly: Regularly changing the water prevents the growth of bacteria or mold, creating a clean and healthy environment for root development.
  • Be patient: Root development can take time, so be patient and avoid disturbing the propagating leaf. Keep an eye on the water level and maintain the appropriate conditions for growth.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1. Can all snake plant varieties be propagated in water?

Yes, most snake plant varieties can be propagated in water. However, some varieties may have different propagation requirements or may not root as easily as others. It’s always a good idea to research the specific variety you have to ensure the best propagation method.

2. How long does it take for snake plant cuttings to root in water?

The time it takes for snake plant cuttings to root in water can vary depending on various factors such as temperature, light, and the health of the cutting. On average, it can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months for roots to develop.

3. Can I propagate snake plants in other mediums besides water?

Yes, snake plants can also be propagated in soil or a well-draining potting mix. Each method has its own advantages and considerations. Water propagation is often preferred for its simplicity and quick results, but soil propagation can also be successful.

4. How often should I change the water when propagating snake plants?

It is recommended to change the water every 7-10 days when propagating snake plants. This helps maintain a clean and healthy environment for root development and prevents the growth of bacteria or mold.

5. Can I propagate snake plants from leaf cuttings?

Yes, snake plants can be propagated from leaf cuttings. The process involves cutting a healthy leaf into sections and placing them in water or soil. Each section has the potential to develop into a new plant.


Putting snake plants in water is a simple and effective method of propagation. By following the step-by-step guide and implementing the tips provided, you can successfully propagate snake plants and enjoy the beauty of these versatile houseplants. Remember to choose healthy leaves, provide adequate light and temperature, change the water regularly, and be patient throughout the process. With time and care, you’ll be rewarded with new snake plants to enhance your indoor space.

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