ZZ Plant : Benefits, Care and Maintenance Tips
ZZ plant, with its wide, attractive, dark green leaves, boasts many favorable traits for offices and homes. ZZ plant tolerates neglect, is drought tolerant and accepts low-light conditions without throwing a fit. Its waxy, smooth leaves reflect sunlight and brighten rooms. ZZ usually grows slowly to a height and width of two to three feet so it is not a plant monster that outgrows containers quickly. Care of ZZ is simple, making it the gold standard for houseplant beginners, preoccupied office workers and brown thumbs.
ZZ plant benefits
- The plant is an air-purifier, which can eliminate toxins in air such as xylene, toluene and benzene to a great extent.
- ZZ plants are easy to care and maintain as they can survive in minimum sunlight and are resistant to drought conditions. It is mainly because the plant roots have rhizomes that help store water.
- The plants help reduce stress and have a positive effect on health.
- In some parts of Africa, ZZ plants are used for medicinal properties as their leaves can cure earache.
ZZ plant significance in Vastu and Feng Shui
ZZ plant is a popular and easy-to-care houseplant. As per Vastu Shastra and Feng Shui, the ZZ plant is an auspicious plant that attracts good luck and brings harmony in a house. Hence, you will find this plant in homes and offices. According to Feng Shui, placing ZZ plants in a house ensures prosperity for the family and helps gain more opportunities and success.
ZZ plant is also known as a fortune tree as it symbolises good luck. You can also gift the plant to someone starting a new venture. It also makes for a perfect housewarming gift for new house owners.
The plant also denotes the following characteristics:
- Growth: The plant is known to have slow and steady growth. It is also recognised for its strength.
- Dedication: People believe the plant’s perseverance is an example of how one should remain dedicated and work hard to achieve one’s goals in life.
- Encouragement: The plant also symbolises encouragement through the way it grows and develops over time.
- Steadiness: ZZ plant also symbolises steadiness and consistency.
Types of ZZ plant
- Lucky variegated: This variety of ZZ plants has green foliage variegated with white and yellow, which may fade under inadequate light conditions.
- Zamicro: It is a dwarf variety of the plant having smaller leaves and shorter stems.
- Raven: It is a newer variety compared to other types of ZZ plants. It is characterised by its dark purple-maroon leaves.
ZZ plant care and maintenance
ZZ plants are low-maintenance plants that can tolerate drought-prone conditions. These drought-tolerant plants grow from rhizomes that store water under the soil. However, they require watering once in two weeks. Among the ZZ plant gardening tips for beginners is that dust may accumulate on the shiny leaves of a plant and hence, one should wipe down leaves using a damp cloth.
ZZ plants can withstand varied lighting conditions. Thus, they can be easily grown indoors in minimum light but can start to look frain quickly without enough light. Placing them near south-facing windows inside a house will give the plants bright and indirect light. When growing the plant outdoors, place it in a pot or a container that can be moved indoors when the temperature cools down.
ZZ plants grow well in normal temperatures and humidity levels at home. However, they may not tolerate cold temperature of less than 45 degrees Fahrenheit or 7 degrees Celsius. The plant does not need extreme humid conditions, but you must avoid dry places. You may increase the humidity levels around the plant with the help of a humidifier.
The plants may tolerate irregular watering, mainly because of their thick rhizomes. However, they need watering if the soil completely dries out, which may happen once in two weeks based on their growing conditions. Wet the soil thoroughly until water runs through the drainage hole in a container. Avoid overwatering the plant and remove excess of water.
Soil and fertilizer
ZZ plants need well-draining soil. The commonly available garden soil mix may be adequate for the plant. Adding perlite or sand will help provide additional drainage to the soil. Zanzibar gems do not need regular fertilising but you can use indoor plant fertiliser by diluting its strength to half in its growing season to increase size or vigour.
ZZ plant problems
- Ensuring the ideal amount of water for the plant is a challenge that plant owners and gardeners face. The plant is dehydrated and requires watering, if its leaves begin yellowing or drooping. Similarly, the plant needs watering if you notice that the upper three inches of soil is dry.
- The plant requires protection from houseplant pests such as aphids, mealybugs, scale, fungus gnats, etc. You can use insecticidal soap to tackle pest problems.
ZZ Plant Propagation
ZZ plants can be propagated in different ways as explained below:
Division: Propagation by division is the simplest method. Divide the rhizomes with at least one leaf stalk. Replant the divisions in separate containers using fresh soil.
Stem cuttings: This method may take a longer time than propagation by division. It takes six to nine months for roots to start growing.
- For quicker propagation, cut off an entire leaf stalk at the base. Remove the bottom leaves from the stem.
- Place the stalk in water and indirect light.
- Roots will appear in a few months. Make sure to replace water to avoid bacterial growth.
- Once you notice substantial root growth, place the plant in a container filled with potting mix.
The ZZ plant is having a moment, and rightly so! It’s one of the easiest houseplants to care for (right up there with snake plant and pothos!), so you don’t have to fuss with it or worry too much if you, ahem, forget to water, for example. Plus, ZZ plant, short for Zamioculcas Zamiifolia, looks good in almost any room of your house with its glossy green leaves and upright form.