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Everything to know about the ZZ Plant

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ZZ Plant

Common Name: ZZ plant, Zanzibar gem, Eternity plant

Latin Name: Zamioculcas

Family: Araceae

Plant Time: Perennial

Mature Size: 2-4 ft. tall, 2-4 ft. wice

Sun Preference: Partial

Soil Preference: Well-draining, Neutral, acidic

Bloom Time: Mid-summer to early autumn

Flower Color: White or brown

Native Area: East Africa

Toxicity: Toxic to humans, toxic to pets

Growth Rate: 6 inches per month

Wildlife Value: -

The ZZ plant, scientifically known as Zamioculcas zamiifolia, is a popular houseplant native to East Africa. Recognized for its attractive, glossy, dark green leaves, the ZZ plant is often favored for its ability to thrive in low-light conditions and its resilience to neglect, making it a perfect choice for novice plant owners and those with busy lifestyles. The plant’s unique appearance, with tall, arching stems covered in smooth, oval-shaped leaves, has earned it various nicknames, including “Zanzibar Gem,” “Eternity Plant,” and “Emerald Palm.” Besides its aesthetic appeal, the ZZ plant is also renowned for its air-purifying qualities, helping to improve indoor air quality by removing toxins. However, it’s worth noting that all parts of the ZZ plant are toxic when ingested, so it’s essential to keep it out of reach of pets and children.

How to care for ZZ plant?

Zamioculcas zamiifolia plants do not require too much care, but there are a few things you should pay attention to. The first thing is that you always have to give the soil time to dry out between waterings. ZZ’s are fine with being watered every 2-3 weeks (or 1 a month in winter).

The second most important thing is keeping your plant away from very bright and intense direct sunlight. They feel the most comfortable in medium light, between 6 to 12 hours per day. A south-facing window is a perfect spot for it. If the leaves turn yellow and burning , immediately move it to a place out of direct light and water it a little. The leaves should be protected from the intense sunlight at all times. If the leaves are yellowing but there are no visible signs of burning, there is a risk of overwatering. In this case, try to move it to a drier environment with lower humidity.

How much water does the zz plant need?

The zz plant does not require much water. Thanks to the water stored in the rhizome, it can go for a long time without water, so you don’t need to water it too often. To avoid overwatering, the zz plant should only be watered when it is dry. Under suitable conditions at room temperature, this means watering once a month.

What temperature does the zz plant need?

The zz plant can be placed indoors or outdoors. Temperature should be a major concern. It prefers a warmer environment, room temperature is just enough for it to grow. The ideal temperature at which a zz plant will grow most efficiently should be between 60-75°F (15-24°C). The minimum temperature at which you can grow a zz plant is 45°F (8°C). Keeping it below this temperature can cause frost damage to the plant.

From a climatic point of view, the USDA zones 9 and 10 are the most suitable for the development of the zz plant, as these zones have the most extreme temperature fluctuations.

How much light does the zz plant need?

Zamioculcas plants do not require much light. Its leaves are sensitive to direct light, so it should not be exposed to direct light. If you notice any scorching or burnt areas on the leaves, it means that your plant’s leaves have received a lot of direct light, which the zz plant does not like. In this case, the plant should be placed where it is exposed to indirect light, i.e. where the light bounces off other objects, thus weakening the light’s power. The zz plant prefers this type of light.

The zz plant grows perfectly well under artificial light, making it a popular plant for offices and rooms where natural light is not available.

What humidity does the zz plant need?

The zz plant does not require high humidity. A relative humidity of 40% is enough to reach the ideal range for the plant. The zz plant can also be placed in a bathroom, even without a window, and will not be bothered by high humidity. The only danger for the zz plant is that bacteria are more likely to colonize in higher humidity. Care should be taken with bacteria, if any lesions are visible on the leaves, it should be moved immediately to a drier environment.

What soil do zamioculcas plants like?

Zamioculcas plants prefer slightly acidic and neutral soil with a neutral pH. The correct pH should be between 6.0 and 7.0. The flower mixture should be neutral. Charcoal, perlite can be mixed into the soil and mixed with potting soil.

What are the risks of having a ZZ plant?

Despite the fact that the zz plant is a beginner-friendly plant, difficulties can arise with this species. The most important feature is its toxic and irritant properties. Further, care should be taken against common pests and diseases. Attention should be paid to problems that occur during growth as well.

Is the ZZ plant toxic?

Yes, the ZZ plant is toxic. It comes from the calcium oxalate crystals in the sap. All parts of the ZZ plant are toxic and any physical contact will cause health problems. Eye and skin irritation may occur if the zz plant is touched. Consumption of zamioculcas plants often causes nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. The ZZ plant is extremely dangerous for pets and it is not recommended to keep this plant if you have pets. They are especially dangerous for cats and dogs, as ingestion of even a small part of the plant can pose a serious health risk to your pet.

What disease can occur?

The diseases of the ZZ plant are largely caused by poor climatic conditions. Bad conditions can happen naturally or due to neglect. Neglect of the ZZ plant can lead to its irreversible death. It is necessary to keep the plant in a suitable place, away from direct light and protect it from overwatering. In addition to rotting of the roots, which can be caused by overwatering, there may be direct sunlight on the leaves, which can turn yellow and burn.

What are the common pests?

The common pests are listed below.

  • Fungus Gnats
  • Whiteflies
  • Scale Insects
  • Aphids
  • Mealybugs
  • Blight
  • Mites

Why should you grow a zz plant?

Zamioculcas plants are recommended for novice gardeners and people who are not familiar with these subjects, as they are easy to care for, maintain and thrive with minimal sunlight.

The zz plant has highly effective air purifying skills, which is why it is favored for use in enclosed offices and rooms such as bedrooms. It is also used for medicinal purposes, most notably to treat earaches.

How to propagate ZZ plant?

There are several methods on how to propagate ZZ Plant. You can do it from stem or leaf cuttings, from division, in water, or in soil. The most popular method is stem cuttings.

When do you need to repot the ZZ plant?

Experts say it is necessary to repot the zz plant every year. In addition, the zz plant gives signals to the outside world that it needs to be replanted. These can be root overload, slow growth and waterlogged soil. It is recommended to replant in spring or summer, when the plant is most active.

How much does a ZZ plant cost?

The ZZ plant costs between 20-40 USD. The price varies depending on the type of the plant, whether it is live or artificial, or what condition it is in.