clean air filter indoor houseplants

Subpages for Best Air Filters for Home: Plants that Purify:

Snake Plant

Snake Plant aka Mother-In-Law’s Tongue aka Bedroom Plant

Snake Plant (Sansevieria trifasciata, ¬†laurentii), AKA Mother-in-Law’s Tongue or Bedroom Plant

snake plants purify indoor bedroom air of toxic gases at night

Main Points:

Called Mother-in-Law’s Tongue (for its sharply pointed leaves), Sansevieria is especially good at clearing formaldehyde out of indoor air. Formaldehyde is a known human carcinogen often found in the glue used in carpet backing and wood furniture, among other places. This is a special plant that differs from most houseplants in that it produces oxygen and removes carbon dioxide at night. Keep this one in your bedroom.

This plant is easy to grow and rarely infested with insects. If you need to bring a housewarming gift, choose a Snake plant for the busy person or college student. This plant survives without a second look.  The snake plant offers a pleasing vertical contrast when grouped with other plants in a sunroom or atrium display.

The snake plant is, however, poisonous to your pets (due to hemolytic saponin and organic acids found in the leaves and flowers) so do not let them snack on its leaves. Symptoms of ingestion include vomiting, salivation, diarrhea, and hemolysis.


Semi-sun to semi-shade to shade.

If the plant blooms, remove the flowers; they secrete a sticky substance.

Water sparingly and let the soil dry between waterings. The snake plant might suffer root rot if overwatered. Feed a dilute liquid fertilizer once a month or whenever the rent or mortgage payment is due.

Grow in standard potting soil in a standard container. Repot annually. If you opt for hydroculture, the Snake plant can go years without repotting.