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Origin and Habitat: Sansevieria sinus-simiorum occours in Malawi and (possibly) also in Zimbabwe.
Type Locality: c. 2 km south of Monkey Bay, Malawi.
- Sansevieria sinus-simiorum Chahin.
ENGLISH: Super Bat, Malawi Bat
Description: Sansevieria sinus-simiorum, also known as 'Malawi Bat' is an herbaceous perennial leaf-succulent with cylindrical leaves, similar to Sansevieria hallii (Baseball Bat). However, it leave are thicker and smoother and the leaf channel is not so deep. The edges are not so sharp as in the letter, except at the leaf tip. The leaves have a massive "D" section, making this plant the thickest of all "bats" thus accounting for the previous cultivar name of "Super Bat".
Derivation of specific name: sinus-simiorum Lat. 'sinus', recess, bay; and Lat. 'simiorum', of the monkeys; for the type locality Monkey Bay, Malawi.
Leaves: Upright to somewhat recurved, hard, thick, spear like, cylindrical with a massive "D" section, 60-90(-110) cm long and almost 5 cm wide with a channel that runs the full length of the leaf. Leaf surface dark green to brownish grey not smooth nor shiny, with shades of grey on the young leaves and almost uniform green on mature leaves. The leaves also differ from the other "bat" sansevierias by the impressed black-green lines running longitudinally on front and back of the leaves.
Flowers: From the rhizomes close to the ground, purplish-white.
Notes: The genus Sansevieria numbers about 60 species most of them native of Africa, it has been variously included in the Amaryllidaceae, the Liliaceae and the Agavaceae but is nowadays usually placed in the Dracaenaceae.
Bibliography: Major references and further lectures
1) Timberlake, J.R. & Martins, E.S. (eds.) “Flora Zambesiaca” 13(2): 1-83. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. 2010
2) M. Idariani Tahir, Maloedyn Sitanggang “165 Sansevieria Eksklusif” AgroMedia, 01 set 2008
3) Urs Eggli, Leonard E. Newton “Etymological Dictionary of Succulent Plant Names” Springer Science & Business Media, 29 June 2013
4) Chahinian, B.J. “Sansevieria sinus-simiorum, a new species from Malawi” Sansevieria 3; 24-26.
Cultivation and Propagation: Sansevieria sinus-simiorum are easy to cultivate but very slow growing. A great container plant that needs little care.
Soil: Use a soil mix consisting of 3 parts loam to 1 part of pumice. Always underpot sansevierias.
Moisture requirements: The plants are very drought tolerant and are watered about every other week during the growing season. During the winter months they are watered once a month. Water sparingly and not at all as temperatures dip in winter but can tolerate going months between watering.
Fertilization: They are fertilized once during the growing season with a balanced fertilizer.
Light requirements: Will tolerate low light levels but grows best and flowers if given bright light and even tolerates full sun. In the garden In mild to tropical climates it prefers semishade or shade and it is not fussy.
Hardness: Sansevieria sinus-simiorum is not hardy and it is best to avoid freezing temperatures. If growing outdoors in frost free areas keep in a covered patio or under an area where plants do not receive winter rainfall.
Heat Tolerance: Excellent.
Propagation: Sansevierias are propagated by cuttings or by divisions taken at any time. Cuttings should be at least 10 cm long and inserted in moist sand. A rhizome will emerge at the cut edge of the leaf.
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