ZZ plant

Looking for a low-maintenance houseplant with gorgeous glossy-green leaves? It’s time to add a ZZ Plant to your home!

ZZ Plant, or Zamioculcas zamiifolia, is a tropical plant grown frequently as a houseplant. This plant is known for its drought tolerance and generally requires watering only once every 2-3 weeks. ZZ Plant is also not prone to common plant diseases or pests and thrives even in low-light indoor conditions.

Read on to learn all about ZZ Plant!

Zz plant

ZZ plant basics

ZZ Plant (Zamioculcas zamiifolia) is a perennial plant native to Africa. ZZ Plants have glossy green leaves and thick, water-storing rhizomes. ZZ Plant is also called Zanzibar Gem, Eternity Plant, and Aroid Palm.

ZZ Plant is a recent introduction to the houseplant world, having been introduced in the late 1990s. Since that time, the plant has become popular with home gardeners due to its attractive shiny green leaves and low maintenance requirements. It is now quite popular on social media and is a must-have for many houseplant parents.

Buying ZZ plants

Although rare several decades ago, ZZ Plants are becoming easier to find in garden centers and plant nurseries. You can find them at big box stores and sometimes even at grocery shops and corner markets.

Zz plants

Caring for ZZ plant

ZZ Plant is an easy plant to care for. They grow best when planted in light, succulent potting mix and in containers with good drainage. ZZ Plant tolerates low light levels and generally only has to be watered every 2-3 weeks.

ZZ Plants are not prone to many common houseplant insects or diseases. They may get some mildew or root rot if the soil is kept damp. These are houseplants that do better without too much water. Let the soil dry out between waterings, trusting that the thick underground roots are storing water for dry periods.

Zz plants at plant nursery

Best potting soil for ZZ plants

ZZ Plants will thrive in high-quality potting soil. For the best results, look for an organic potting mix that contains perlite or pumice for drainage. These plants do not like soil that stays wet for a long time. And always fresh potting soil to repot your ZZ Plants to avoid transferring soil-borne diseases.

Fertilizing ZZ plant

ZZ Plants grown in containers require feeding with plant fertilizer as they are isolated from their natural ecosystem. Choose an indoor plant food that you like, and be sure to read and follow the instructions. Beware that fish-based organic products can be stinky indoors, so I avoid those.

Zz plant

Leaf-drop in ZZ plants

ZZ Plants are generally evergreen perennials but may drop their leaves like deciduous plants if they become stressed. Lack of water (drought) is a common reason ZZ Plants drop their leaves. The plants drop their leaves and focus on storing their remaining water in their underground rhizomes. If watered soon after leaf drop, the ZZ Plant may grow new leaves as it rehydrates.

Pests and diseases affecting ZZ plants

ZZ Plant is not susceptible to many pests or diseases.

It is, of course, susceptible to root rot, just like most plants are, but this can be avoided as long as you are careful about keeping still water out of the planter. The most common sign of root rot is wilting leaves. When this happens, you will probably have to dig up the plant, cut away the rotten parts, and possibly even repot it in fresh, dry potting mix.

Mary Jane Duford
Mary Jane Duford

Mary Jane Duford is a quintessential Canadian gardener. An engineer by trade, she tends to an ever-expanding collection of plants. In her world, laughter blooms as freely as her flowers, and every plant is raised with a dash of Canadian grit.

Mary Jane is a certified Master Gardener and also holds a Permaculture Design Certificate. She's also a proud mom of three, teaching her little sprouts the crucial difference between a garden friend and foe.

When she's not playing in the dirt, Mary Jane revels in her love for Taylor Swift, Gilmore Girls, ice hockey, and the surprisingly soothing sounds of bluegrass covers of classic hip-hop songs. She invites you to join her garden party, a place where you can share in the joy of growing and where every day is a new opportunity to find the perfect spot for yet another plant.

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