ZZ plant is the perfect one for every plant lover and forgetful gardener. It is a prevalent plant and can be seen in every plant lover’s house.
About the plant
The botanical name of this plant is Zamioculcas zamiifolia. It is commonly known as ZZ plant, Zuzu plant, Zanzibar gem, eternity plant, emerald palm, or aroid palm.
The name Zamioculcas zamiifolia is quite tricky to pronounce and remember, so its botanical name is called ZZ plant in short form.
ZZ plant belongs to the Araceae family, and it is a genus of flowering plants.
ZZ plant originated in Africa. In 1996, the Dutch nurseries of South Africa saw this plant and observed its propagating potential, and they started distributing it all over the world.
Since then, the ZZ plant has made its place in everyone’s heart, home, and office as well.
Overview of the plant
ZZ plant is a tropical perennial plant, which has attractive, glossy, wide, and dark green foliages. The leaves of the plant can grow 40-60 cm long.
The plant has unique roots. The roots of these plants look like a potato known as rhizomes. Rhizomes store water and nutrients in it.
It is a drought-tolerant plant, due to the rhizomes and the plant rarely produces any flower.
Sometimes people mistakenly assume it as an artificial plant because the entire plant appears waxy and shiny, so it resembles the plant made of plastic.
These plants needed very little care and always looked fantastic and healthy. These plants are indestructible and can tolerate the negligence of its owner. They can endure neglect and thrive well without any care for months and months.
Growth preferred area
It is not a fast-growing plant. These plants grow slowly to a height and width of 2-3 feet. Like other houseplants, the ZZ plant also favoured bright to moderate indirect sunlight.
The rhizomes of this plant store water and nutrients, that’s why the plant flourishes well during droughts.
These plants can even thrive well without proper conditions. They are very low maintenance plants.
The ZZ plant originated in eastern Africa and also found in Kenya to northeastern South Africa.
|Botanical name||Zamioculca zamiifolia|
|Common names||ZZ plant, Zuzu plant, emerald palm, eternity plant, aroid palm, Zanzibar gem|
|Species||3 species (till now)|
|Plant Type||Evergreen perennial succulent|
|Mature size||2-3 feet or more|
|Native area||Eastern Africa|
The cost of the plant
The cost of the plant will be around INR 400-800 or more. Prices may vary according to the species and the place you live.
How much does seed cost?
The cost of the seeds will be around $2.5-6 or more. The price of the seeds varies upon the quality and the quantity of the seeds.
The total varieties of this plant are not known. Earlier it’s said that only one species of this plant exists, but now two more types exist.
Here are the varieties of ZZ plant:
- Zamioculca zamiifolia ‘Dowon’
- Zamioculca zamiifolia ‘Zamicro’
- Zamioculca zamiifolia ‘Raveen’
ZZ plant care guide
By the way, ZZ plants can grow well without any care, but these plants require minimal effort, they should get them.
These plants can survive in a minimal light source as well. These qualities make them best for indoor decoration.
Here, are the few care tips for ZZ plant
ZZ plants prefer bright to moderate and indirect sunlight. They can even flourish well in low light conditions and under fluorescent light. These make them an ideal plant for the workplace. Avoid placing them under direct sunlight.
These plants prefer water when the soil gets fully dried. The roots of these plants, which are known as rhizomes, store water in it. So, this doesn’t require lots of water.
If you forget to water them, they still thrive and look well & healthy.
Allow the top surface of the soil to dry out completely between watering. Overwatering or underwatering can cause rhizome (root) rot.
Watering them once in every 3-4 weeks will be enough. A good drainage hole in the pot is essential.
The ZZ plant favored temperature ranges between 18°C-24°C (65℉-75℉). Avoid temperatures below 15°C (59 ° F).
Average house humidity will be enough for these plants, but if the air is dry in your home or workplace, then increase the humid level. Misting will be best to combat the dry air and to raise the humidity.
You can feed your ZZ plant with diluted liquid fertilizer during the growing season (spring-summer) once a month. Apply water immediately after feeding the plant. These plants prefer organic fertilizer.
The major drawback of this plant is it’s all parts are poisonous. Always wear gloves while handling it and wash hands thoroughly to avoid any skin irritation.
Keep it out of the reach of the pets and children.
Pests and problems
The ZZ plants are pest-resistant, but if you notice any yellow spots on your plant, it could be aphid infestation.
To combat the pests and insects, use neem oil or eucalyptus oil or any insecticidal soap.
- Root rot: This is one of the most common mistakes that people do. Overwatering causes root rot.
The plant’s rhizomes store water, so they don’t need frequent watering.
Before watering, always make sure the 2 inches of the soil is thoroughly dry out.
- Turning brown: It is also caused by overwatering. Overwatering the plant generates lots of problems. Water them once every 3-4 weeks.
- Leaf tips turn brown: If the tips of your ZZ plant turn brown that indicates, the air is dry around the plant, or low humidity can also cause tips brown. To avoid this problem, mist the leaves to improve the humidity level.
Repotting and propagation
Repotting is needed when the plant starts coming out of the pot and growing from the drainage holes. Repot the plant in a bigger pot than the previous one.
Repotting the plan once in a year will be enough.
Propagating ZZ plants is very easy. They can be propagated by division method or stem cutting method. Both ways are easy to follow.
Here are the steps:
Step 1: Take out the entire plant, divide it into two sections. Separate the rhizomes gently.
Step 2: Fill a pot with a well potting mix.
Step 3: Now, replant it carefully in the new pot and fill the remaining half of the pot with potting mix.
Stem cutting method:
Step 1: Cut a healthy and fresh stem with a couple of leaves on it.
Step 2: Plant the stem in a well-drained potting mix.
Step 3: Now, place the cutting in a warm place, under bright but indirect sunlight, occasionally water it. Avoid overwatering it; otherwise, it won’t survive.
Be patient. The plant is a slow grower, so it’ll take time to thrive. It may take several months to show any signs of rooting.
The ZZ plants are slow growers, so pruning is not really needed to maintain the size and height of the plant.
Prune the yellow and brown leaves, so that the plant looks healthy and fresh.
Benefits of the ZZ plant
Air purifying quality
The plant has air purifying qualities for the indoor atmosphere.
NASA study researchers found that the plant has the ability to reduce air toxins such as xylene, toluene, benzene in an adequate amount.
In 2014 the study from the department of plant and environmental science found that ZZ plants are effective in reducing air pollutants.
It is said that this plant is medicinally used in Malawi’s Mulanje district. In Tanzania’s Usambara mountains, the liquid extract of the leaves of the ZZ plant is used to treat earache, inflammation, and ulceration. There is very little information about this, so to what extent it is true, there is no guarantee if it has any medicinal qualities or not.