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Zamioculcas zamiifolia

Phonetic Spelling
zam-ee-oh-KUL-kass zam-ee-FOH-lee-uh
This plant has medium severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

ZZ plant is an erect, semi-evergreen perennial in the Araceae (ariod) family and native to Africa. The species name means with leaves like Zamia, which is an unrelated genus. This plant has a slow growth rate, reaching 2 to 4 feet in height and width.

In the landscape, ZZ plant needs to be planted in partial to deep shade and highly organic or sandy soil with good drainage. It has bulbous fleshy rhizomes that give rise to glossy leaves that store water and make it highly drought tolerant. 

As a houseplant, pot it in well-drained potting soil that is watered routinely but allowed to dry out between waterings, as wet feet are not tolerated. Water it only once a month in winter months when it goes dormant; water twice monthly in the summer, but only if the soil has dried out completely. Use a balanced fertilizer once or twice a year. This plant can be treated in much the same way as cactus and other succulent plants. While they will grow in very low levels of light, even in areas with only fluorescent light, they do best with bright indirect sunlight. Scalding and browning of leaves can occur if the plant is placed in direct sunlight. Propagate by division or leaf cutting. This plant has a medium toxicity to cats and dogs.

ZZ plant is one of the easiest to grow, low-maintenance houseplants and is seen frequently in commercial interiorscapes. In some areas, it may be possible to grow this plant in a container outdoors if it is brought in once the temperature falls below 60 degrees F.  

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  No significant problems.

VIDEO Created by Elisabeth Meyer for "Edibles, Bulbs, and Houseplants" a plant identification course offered in partnership with Longwood Gardens.   

Profile Video:
See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
'Dowon'
Tags:
#evergreen#poisonous#houseplant#perennials#slow growing#interiorscape#low maintenance#herbaceous#spadix#problem for cats#ebh-h#problem for dogs#tropical feel#easy to grow houseplant#hsc#hsc-f
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
'Dowon'
Tags:
#evergreen#poisonous#houseplant#perennials#slow growing#interiorscape#low maintenance#herbaceous#spadix#problem for cats#ebh-h#problem for dogs#tropical feel#easy to grow houseplant#hsc#hsc-f
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Zamioculcas
    Species:
    zamiifolia
    Family:
    Araceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Leaf Cutting
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Africa
    Dimensions:
    Height: 2 ft. 0 in. - 4 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 2 ft. 0 in. - 4 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Houseplant
    Perennial
    Poisonous
    Succulent
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Semi-evergreen
    Habit/Form:
    Arching
    Erect
    Growth Rate:
    Slow
    Maintenance:
    Low
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Deep shade (Less than 2 hours to no direct sunlight)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    High Organic Matter
    Sand
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    9a, 9b, 10a, 10b
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Cream/Tan
    Green
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Spadix
    Flower Description:
    Rarely flowers. Sheath-like green spathe surrounds a white spadix.(an upright spike of creamy white flowers)
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Semi-evergreen
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Fleshy
    Glossy
    Leathery
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Long-lasting
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Compound (Pinnately , Bipinnately, Palmately)
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Pinnately compound glossy green leaves with thick petioles that can grow up to 2-4' long. Around 25 leaflets, each elliptic and about 1-2" long.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Cross Section:
    Round
    Stem Description:
    Thick, fleshy stems from a rhizome. They start out broad and taper towards the top.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Houseplants
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought
    Problems:
    Problem for Cats
    Problem for Dogs
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Medium
    Poison Symptoms:
    diarrhea, vomiting
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    calcium oxalate
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Leaves