Sansevieria trifasciata outside in Socal?

dimitrig(SoCal z10a/21)September 30, 2013

I have seen this plant used indoors in bright light, but I noticed that the Ritz Carlton in downtown Los Angeles had these outside in a planter next to a south-facing wall. They create a very striking effect when planted en masse.

I have a difficult spot in my yard under a sycamore tree that gets full sun in winter when the tree loses it leaves and almost total shade (bright indirect light) the rest of the year. This spot is also fairly dry even though I have irrigation, because the tree roots soak up all the moisture.

The only plants I have been able to grow successfully in this spot are some types of azaleas, clivia, daylilies, agapanthus, and coleus (as an annual). Clivia in particular is well-suited.

It would be great if I could use Sansevieria trifasciata in this spot, but I am concerned about whether the full sun in winter will harm it. I am also concerned about frost, but when I saw it planted outside at the hotel it made me think this is maybe a non-issue (or else maybe they cover it when a frost is expected).

Can I plant Sansevieria trifasciata outside in SoCal in a spot like I described?

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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

I don't think the sun would be a problem, but frost will ruin foliage. As fast as they grow with plenty of sun and water, those leaves would easily/quickly be replaced if you did have an occasional problem and occasional damaged tips are OK with you.

Pics of some of mine in the ground here (and a new pic from a couple weeks ago below.) I anticipate any I don't dig up will be killed by winter here, not just frost on some leaves. I would certainly try a few experimental pieces in your location.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 12:20PM
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Solar_Storm(24 CA)

I live in Torrance, CA about 4 miles from the coast. All my sans (maybe 30 plants) are in pots (all species, no tri cultivars) outdoors on shelves in front of a south facing wall. They've been there for over 10 years and although some show leaf damage from low temps or improper watering (too much or too little), they do pretty good.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2013 at 2:01PM
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Stush2049(Pitts., Pa. 6)

Oh how I wish those plants of yours stayed that bright white with green markings. Looks so nice. You grew them well this year.
Do you think trifasciata is more frost prone to damage than the others. Interesting thought. Most can take zone 9?? And trifasciata zone 10??

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 2:27PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL

Stush, thanks! But all I did was a dig a hole, insert plants, then do nothing since March. A dozen inches of rain in July? No problem. Last year - no rain all summer? No problem. At least for summer where possible, I recommend it. So easy to dig up, unlike many other plants. Takes seconds to excavate for trades/postage. Putting in a pot for winter, if necessary, would just take a few more.

    Bookmark   October 2, 2013 at 3:35PM
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I live in a hot valley, more like Africa. I have seen them in front of a Bank along a So. faceing cement wall they all seem to look good all year long. Now I am wondering if my spell check is working. Please let me know my feeling will not be hurt. Norma

    Bookmark   October 16, 2013 at 3:06AM
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Stush2049(Pitts., Pa. 6)

I for one will never tell some one how to spell. With out spell checker I could not last a minuet. Even spell check gets confused with my typing. Thank you very much for posting.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2013 at 11:30AM
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hermine(S. CA)

the plants outside the hotel are replaced, rotated with fresh plants because over the years, they have not maintained their crisp and perfect appearance. I remember thinking that this would have to be done when I first drove past them. MANY plants in the public landscape are replaced when nobody is looking in order to give the appearance of perfection. If you want to grow them to PERFECTION in So CA, you will need to move them around, put them under shade cloth and in general NOT treat them like perennials under the naked sky. I am sure many of them will survive, but if their appearance matters to you, this is a nice place to grow them, but you will not get perfection, from a cosmetic standpoint.

    Bookmark   October 17, 2013 at 6:17PM
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Solar_Storm(24 CA)

After thought . . . It's not so much that sans like trifasciata don't like water, it's more that they don't like their feet (roots) to stay wet. So planting them in ground that drains pretty quickly should not be an issue.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 12:09PM
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