7 Easy Steps to Divide & Repot a Snake Plant

how to separate snake plant

Have you decided it’s time to divide your large healthy snake plant? 

You may want to divide your snake plant if it has become too large for its pot or if you simply want more than one snake plant. To separate your plant, let it dry out, gather supplies, remove it from the pot & soil, cut the rhizome, repot the pups, and water your plants. 

First, establish your reasons and goals behind separating your snake plant. Then gather the supplies you’ll need.

Common reasons for dividing a snake plant

1. It has grown too large for its pot.

A happy snake plant will keep growing and may outgrow its pot. While snake plants benefit from not having extra room in their pots, your plant can eventually become rootbound. 

If you notice your snake plant is drying out extra fast between waterings, or see roots growing out of the bottom drainage holes, it’s time to see if it needs repotting. This gives you the option to divide your snake plant rather than getting a larger pot. 

2. You would like to have more than one plant.

Maybe you would like to have a snake plant in an additional location of your home or to give to a friend. 

snake plant before separating
My snake plant before separating

What You’ll Need

  • Soil: If mixing, use a succulent mix and add orchid bark, pumice, or perlite for extra drainage.
  • Two or more pots with drainage holes: Terracotta or nursery pots with several drainage holes are best. You can use a cover pot to achieve the right aesthetic. See this article for guidance on selecting a pot for snake plants.
  • A clean, sharp knife
  • Garden gloves and a catch-tray for dirt if working indoors

Steps for Separating your Snake Plant

1. Let your snake plant dry out

Wait until your snake plant soil is dried out before starting this process. This will make it easier to remove it from the pot. 

2. Gather your supplies and mix the soil

If you don’t already have a preferred soil mix, you can use a succulent mix and add elements for extra aeration. 

Mix at this ratio: Mix ½ succulent mix with ¼ perlite or pumice and ¼ orchid bark. This is a well-aerated mix to help prevent root rot. If you are generally careful not to overwater, you can try slightly less aeration with ¾ succulent mix, ⅛ of perlite, and ⅛ of orchid bark. 

3. Remove your entire snake plant from its pot

Carefully turn your snake plant and pot over horizontally. Gently pull the soil and plant loose from the pot. 

4. Remove the soil

remove the soil

Gently remove soil while being careful not to damage the roots. You can hold the roots under a running faucet to gently remove any smaller pieces of dirt. Use lukewarm to cool water, and avoid using hot water or extremely cold water on the root system (this can damage or shock the roots).

5. Cut the rhizome to separate the roots

separate snake plant roots

Carefully cut your snake plant’s rhizome precisely between the pup groups. Make sure each plant has its own root system. Then gently separate the small roots.

6. Pot each plant in its appropriate pot

repot snake plants after dividing

Ensure that the pot for each of your snake plants is not too large. Pots that are too large can lead to root rot as the root system isn’t large enough to absorb the water from the bottom half of the soil. 

7. Water your plants

Once you have potted each snake plant pup, top-water until you see water coming from the drainage holes. Allow your plant to drain thoroughly before placing it in a cover pot. 

dividing a snake plant successfully

Care Tips For Your Newly Divided Snake Plants 

Now you have two snake plants to enjoy or share with a friend.

If you have decided to keep both of them, give your plants the best chance to thrive with adequate light. We suggest giving your plants similar growing conditions as you provided when it was just one plant.

Avoid selecting a dark corner for your second snake plant pup.

While snake plants are tolerant of low light, they thrive in bright indirect light. Since they are prone to root rot, giving your plants adequate light helps them dry out thoroughly between waterings. If you would like to know when it is time to water your snake plant, check out this article

how to divide a snake plant

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