ZZ plant

How to grow Zamioculcas zamiifolia

Flowering time: ZZ plants can produce flowers, however it is very rare. The flowers they produce aren’t particularly attractive either. Instead this plant is known for its glossy, dark foliage. The leaves on this plant are a deep shade of green, or a wonderful shade of black in a Raven ZZ.

Location: This plant is ideal for a windowless office or bathroom where it will only receive small amounts of fluorescent light. [see ‘Light’ for more info on why!]

Soil: Cactus and succulent soil is great for the ZZ Plant.

Light: ZZ Plants will be completely fine in extremely low levels of light. Or even rooms with no light at all as they will accept fluorescent lighting as a substitute for natural day light. The glossy leaves of the plant reflect light back into a room and help to brighten the environment around it.

Care: Thrives on neglect.

Water: Water sparingly, especially in the winter months.


ZZ Plant


This low-light loving plant is perfect for that dark spot in your home where most other houseplants would fail.

Zamioculcas zamiifolia has been around for hundreds of years and originally comes from drought-prone areas of Africa. In the 1990s a Dutch nursery spotted the propagating potential of the ZZ plant. In 1996 the ZZ plant started to be distributed commercial from Holland to the rest of the world. Since then it has become a firm favourite of offices and homes alike.

Zamioculcas zamiifolia goes by a few common names including:

  • Zanzibar gem
  • ZZ plant
  • Zuzu plant
  • Aroid palm
  • Eternity plant
  • Emerald palm ZZ


ZZ plant


Plants offer a full foliage with wide, dark green leaves. It has many traits that make it popular as a house and office plant.

This leafy plant will tolerate neglect, it is drought tolerate and lived well in low-light condition including spaces with artificial lighting. ZZ Plants usually grows slowly making it manageable for those with busy lives. It will reach heights of up to 1 meter. The spread of the plant depends on the size of the pot it is kept in.

This plant will grow and spread via swollen rhizomes under the soil. ZZ Plants like to be kept root bound, however if you afford this plant space in the pot, it will develop further rhizomes and offshoots to increase its spread.

When you plant becomes pot bound, you will know. It will distort the shape of a plastic nursery pot, of even start to push the plant out the top of the pot. At this point you can propagate your ZZ Plant. Propagating a ZZ is easy. Unpot the plant and brush off the soil. This will expose the rhizomes (they look like potatoes), you can separate these rhizomes and replant. Your ZZ Plant will grow quicker and stronger if more than one rhizome is potted together.

The ZZ Plant is a great air purifier. In a NASA study in the 1980s, researchers found that this plant was particularly good at removing toxins such as xylene, toluene, and benzene from the air.


ZZ plant

What’s different about this plant?

The Zamioculcas zamiifolia is one of the easiest houseplants you can own. It will thrive where other plants may struggle. It is ideal in areas of your home with low, or no natural light. It also thrives on artificial light, making it a great plant for offices.

Its rhizomes store water, which means this plant is drought tolerant and is the perfect touch of green to those of your with busy lifestyles or those of travel on a regular basis. It can be left for long periods of time without care and attention. It would even be the perfect plant for holiday lets and Airbnb properties, which tend to have no or very few houseplant in situ.


ZZ plant

Where you can get hold of a Zamioculcas zamiifolia?

Zamioculcas zamiifolia are available from many plant nurseries, or can be purchased from www.prettycactus.co.uk to be delivered direct to you door.


ZZ plant

Donna from Pretty Cactus

About Pretty Cactus

Pretty Cactus is run by Donna and her lovely team from the shop in Brooke, South Norfolk.

Donna started the business in 2018, growing a passion into a business. Donna had always been a plant lover, spending hours in the garden centre and DIY stores picking up sad and reduced pants, and nursing them back to health. The homegrown plants were sold at country fayres and craft markets. Before long, Donna was so busy she decided to give up her corporate job and run Pretty Cactus as a full-time venture. Opening her very first shop and website to sell online.

Donna now works with a team or growers and distributors in the UK and Holland to source plants, trying, where possible to get hold of more unusual cacti, succulents, and houseplants.

Donna and the Pretty Cactus team are always looking for new ways to style plants. Displaying these ideas in the shop and on social media. The Pretty Cactus shop has become an inspirational hub for plant lovers near and far who love to visit the store for ideas, plants, pots, and a bit of friendly plant chat too.

  • Stacey Yecats

    My ZZ produced a flower early fall last year. She’s now got 2 flowers coming out -early March!! She sits near a south facing window and gets a fair amount of light. Yes, these plants survive low light but boy do they thrive in lots of light!

    March 5, 2022
  • Does it signal an issue or that something is wrong if it flowers? Like, do I need to repot it or something?

    January 21, 2023

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