Sansevieria Boncel: The Fascinating World of Starfish Snake Plants

If you’re a fan of succulents and looking to add a unique touch to your plant collection, then you should consider growing starfish snake plants.

These intriguing plants, also known as Dracaena cylindrica var. patula ‘Boncel,’ are aptly named for their starfish-like shape.

In this article, we’ll dive into the world of starfish snake plants, exploring their origins, characteristics, care tips, and more. So, let’s embark on this exciting journey and discover the wonders of starfish snake plants.

Origins and Characteristics of Starfish Snake Plants

Starfish Snake Plant
Image: Starfish Snake Plant

Starfish snake plants, scientifically known as Dracaena cylindrica var. patula ‘Boncel,’ are a rare and captivating hybrid of the more common snake plant, or Sansevieria cylindrica.

Native to Angola, these plants have gained popularity as revered houseplants in China, where they are believed to embody the eight virtues of the Eight Gods. With their striking fan-shaped foliage, starfish snake plants are truly a sight to behold.

Key Characteristics:

  • Light green fan-shaped foliage with dark green concentric circles
  • Young “pups” that can be easily transplanted for propagation
  • Striped, smooth, elongated gray-green leaves
  • Drought-tolerant and only requiring watering once every other week
  • Capable of growing up to 7 feet (2 m.) in length
  • Tubular leaves rather than strap-like, giving it a unique appearance

Growing Starfish Snake Plants

Light and Soil Requirements

Starfish snake plants thrive in bright light conditions, although they can tolerate lower light levels as well. It’s best to place them in a room with ample natural light.

When it comes to soil, a well-draining succulent potting mix is ideal for these plants. This type of soil ensures that excess moisture doesn’t accumulate around the roots, which can lead to rotting.

Watering and Feeding

As succulents, starfish snake plants store water in their leaves, making them drought-tolerant. It’s important to allow the soil to dry out completely before watering them again.

Overwatering can be detrimental to these plants, so it’s crucial to avoid excessive moisture. As for feeding, a general all-purpose houseplant food diluted by half should be applied every three weeks to provide the necessary nutrients.

Temperature and Environmental Conditions

Starfish snake plants are relatively adaptable to different temperature ranges. They thrive in average home temperatures and can tolerate a wide range of conditions.

However, it’s best to protect them from drafts and avoid exposing them to temperatures below 50 degrees F (10 C).

Propagation and Care Tips

Propagation of starfish snake plants is fairly straightforward. The young pups that emerge from the base of the plant can be carefully separated and transplanted into their own pots.

This allows you to expand your starfish snake plant collection or share them with fellow plant enthusiasts.

When it comes to general care, starfish snake plants are low-maintenance. They don’t require frequent pruning, but you can trim any brown or damaged leaves to keep the plant looking fresh and healthy.

Additionally, it’s advisable to periodically clean the leaves with a damp cloth to remove dust and maintain their vibrant appearance.

Benefits of Starfish Snake Plants

Starfish snake plants offer more than just visual appeal. Like other succulents, they contribute to improved air quality by releasing oxygen and purifying the surrounding environment.

These plants are also known for their ability to absorb toxins, such as formaldehyde and benzene, making them a valuable addition to indoor spaces.


In conclusion, starfish snake plants are a fascinating addition to any plant collection. With their starfish-like shape, unique foliage, and easy care requirements, they are sure to captivate both novice and experienced plant enthusiasts.

Whether you’re looking to enhance your indoor environment or simply appreciate the beauty of succulents, starfish snake plants are a wonderful choice. So, why not embark on this delightful journey and bring the wonders of starfish snake plants into your home?

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