It has been proposed by Pei-Luen Lu1 & Clifford W. Morden( in Phylogenetic Relationships among Dracaenoid Genera (Asparagaceae: Nolinoideae) Inferred from Chloroplast DNA Loci, Systematic Botany (2014), 39(1): pp. 90-104, DOI 10.1600/036364414X678035), that the genus Sansevieria should be transferred to the genus Dracaena. This treatment has not yet been taken up universally and so, for the time being, we are leaving Sansevieria as distinct. The proposed new name in Dracaena can be seen below in the list of synonyms.
Dracaena trifasciata (Prain) Mabb.
Sansevieria craigii auct.
Sansevieria jacquinii N.E.Br.
Sansevieria laurentii De Wild.
Sansevieria zeylanica laurentii (De Wild.) L.H.Bailey
Common Name: Mother-in-Law's Tongue
Sansevieria trifasciata is a stemless, evergreen, succulent, perennial plant producing long, narrow, erect or slightly spreading sword-shaped leaves 30 - 120cm long from a rhizomatous rootstock[
The plant is cultivated for its fibre in several tropical countries, it is also harvested from the wild for local medicinal use. It is commonly grown as an ornamental in tropical and subtropical regions, and as a pot plant in many other areas of the world[
The plant contains glycosides and saponins and is very toxic[
Although poisonous, saponins are poorly absorbed by the human body and so most pass through without harm. Saponins are quite bitter and can be found in many common foods such as some beans. They can be removed by carefully leaching in running water. Thorough cooking, and perhaps changing the cooking water once, will also normally remove most of them. However, it is not advisable to eat large quantities of food that contain saponins. Saponins are much more toxic to some creatures, such as fish, and hunting tribes have traditionally put large quantities of them in streams, lakes etc in order to stupefy or kill the fish[
Western Tropical Africa - Nigeria to Gabon, east to Zaire..
Found at elevations from 500 - 1,200 metres[
|Other Uses Rating||
|Cultivation Status||Cultivated, Ornamental, Wild
Prefers a well-drained soil in a sunny or partially shaded position[
], and a pH between 6 and 7[
]. Bright sunlight can lead to bleaching of leaf colour[
]. Established plants are drought tolerant[
The plant is used to treat ringworm and fungal diseases[
The leaf sap is applied directly on infected sores, cuts and grazes, it is also used to treat fungal and scabies infections[
A fibre obtained from the leaves is used to make string, mats etc[
The leaf pulp is used for cosmetics[
An extract of the leaves is used as an ingredient in commercial cosmetic preparations as a skin conditioner[
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