Covering up scars

plantladyott(5)July 9, 2004

Hi! I have a question based on the esthetics of Sansevieria. Has anyone ever tried to cover up the ugly scars on the leaves of snake plants? Being an interior landscaper, we sometimes have to trim damaged tips which then scar over, not to mention scratches and scrapes from abuse by the public. I've alway wondered if using say a marker in the right shade of green would work or maybe wax crayons or a dab of acrylic paint.


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Solar_Storm(24 CA)

Do you think people really notice? Since Sansevierias are notoriusly slow growers, I suggest you find artificial plants, switch to a different genera, or perhaps find a nursery that rents plants.

Using wax on the leaves would be like depriving them of air and they would suffocate.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2004 at 1:44PM
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Cena(S CA 10A)

Rather than do that, I would just cut the offensive leaf off at soil level.

I know that certain types of plant textures and structures invite vandalism, and I have seen young adults etch their names into leaves of these plants... I often enjoy the thought of this behavior with Euphorbia plants carved up the same way, thinking about what a surprise the vandal got later, but poor defenseless sans have nothing to fight back with.

Really, I don't think your answer lies in 'covering' anything up. Perhaps, as SS says, a different plant would suit the location better.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2004 at 5:01PM
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Goodness I wouldn't wax the whole leaf! Just the beige scarred parts which don't function anyway. Vandalism alas is a fact of life in our business especially when placed in hotels! As far as changing the plant, my clients hate silk and the plants are thriving in their locations. It's just the ugly scars that I notice and want to find a way to blend them in. I've used acrylic paint once and it didn't hurt the plant, but was not the right shade of green. Kinda like wound paint I suppose. The solution would have to be portable so my technicians could carry it in their pockets like a crayon. Get it?

    Bookmark   July 12, 2004 at 10:48AM
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jderosa(z6 NJ)

What about green magic markers? They are portable, and even if the color isn't perfect, it has to be better than the scar.

Joe 'you could also rotate the plant' DeRosa

    Bookmark   July 13, 2004 at 8:43AM
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I will have to go shopping for something in a close shade and try it out I guess. Just thought maybe somebody had already done it. Thanks!


    Bookmark   July 14, 2004 at 11:27AM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

I really don't think folks notice all that much, or look that closely; I suggest it's just you that sees it. I like Joe's idea of rotating the plant, if it were mine I'd try that, tho' I might also try a green crayon for just those spots.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2004 at 12:21PM
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I should think that acrylic would cover up those beige scars better than either magic marker or crayon. An artist supply shop would have a larger range of color choices, and you can blend two shades if necessary. If you need glossy results to match a leaf, they should also have a gloss medium you can mix in with the colored paint to get that effect. Another nice thing about acrylics, as you probably already know, is that while you can wash them out with water before they dry, once they do dry, they are waterproof; so once you treat a plant, that color will really stay. Hey, I think I may fix the ugly tips on a plant or two!

    Bookmark   July 18, 2004 at 12:57AM
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I've done it, and yes, it works! I had a couple tan sunburn scars on my otherwise-perfect S. suffruticosa (which btw, is budding now- pics to come later.) I touched them up with some dark green acrylic paint, and they blended right in so you can hardly see them. That was maybe 3 years ago, and the paint still covers the scars and nothing has been harmed by it.
When I post pictures of the flowers, I'll include a shot of the touch-up job.

    Bookmark   July 20, 2004 at 3:58PM
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I just used acrylic craft type paint, but I may have wound up mixing colors to match (I do that all the time for stuff I'm touching up.) The paint comes in plastic bottles, maybe 3" tall, so they wouldn't be difficult to carry, and the paint is water-soluable so that'd be good for on-site use, too. Best of luck with it!

    Bookmark   July 20, 2004 at 4:02PM
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I confess also to using green crayon to cover-up a couple of ugly brown patches on a newly-bought Sansevieria trifasciata, and it worked, and the leaves suffered no further harm. I wasn't that good at matching the greens, though.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2004 at 2:45PM
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