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Let's cross our fingers / bow our heads and hope / pray / wish that my new ZZs live.

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2006
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by Amany on March 31, 2006 10:11 PM
I went to Lowes and got the last ZZ Plant they had. I almost left it because it was in terrible condition. It was in six inch pot that was bursting apart (from needing to be repotted) and had about 8 or 9 stalks. The manager took one look at my face when I saw it and offered it to me for 4 dollars. He suggested I give it a trim and repot. The only other ZZ plants I'd come across before were 40 bucks and up. I'm not ready to spend that much on a plant yet, but I wanted one of these really, really bad.

As I was removing the dirt the tubers were separating, so I now have 4 new ZZ Plants in 3 inch pots. There were only about three roots that had a little rot on the ends. I trimmed them back and am hoping for the best. I planted them in cacti succulent soil and have them in medium light. I haven't watered yet. I figured I'd wait a while because the soil in the original pot was moist. I think it had been watered recently.

If anyone has any suggestions or input, I'm open.

Btw, the dirt was full of those water retention crystals. Why would water retention crystals be added to the soil of a plant that thrives on dryness?
by Will Creed on April 01, 2006 08:36 AM
I think you are on the right track, although I am not sure I would have separated them. But at least you put them into small pots and resisted the common temptation to make them grow bigger by using big pots.

The water retention crystals are probably the reason it wasn't doing well.

Although ZZ does well in low light, I suggest that you give yours as much light as possible to help them recover. Also, keep them a bit moister than usual until they have established themselves.

How about some before and after photos so you can demonstrate your success!
by Amany on April 01, 2006 09:37 AM
Thank you will. I will use your instructions. I'll take take a before picture tomorrow and another one in 4 - 6 weeks.
by joclyn on April 01, 2006 03:30 PM
ahh. zz plant. pretty cool looking thing! my boss was sent a bunch of plants by someone who was promoting their company (they do this soil-less soil thingy).

one of the plants is a zz...right now, it's in a combonation of the 'soil crystals' and water. i want to put it in soil (because these 'crysta' things are basically worthless) but know nothing about this plant.

there isn't much of a root system (don't know if that's normal for this plant) and i didn't really notice anything that looks like a tuber.

should i remove all those soil thingy's and then just let it sit in water so the roots become more established? or should i just put it right into soil? is cactus soil the right kind?

what kind of light is best? and how much? what about food? thanks!!
by Amany on April 01, 2006 08:14 PM
I haven't had much experience with ZZs yet, but cactus and succulent type is ideal. ZZs are succulents and don't need to be watered very often. They should dry out completely between waterings. You'd water it the way you would a snake plant. They don't have to have food but, if you decide to fertilize, do it once or twice during it's growing season. They can survive in any light, but bright is best. No direct sun though.
My ZZs have tubers with roots attached to them. The roots are small. It stores water and nutrients in the tubers, stems and the leaves.
I wonder if yours doesn't have a tuber because it's in those water crystals it doesn't have to store water?? That's just a theory. Hopefully someone more knowledegable will come along. Not sure about that one...
I was able to learn about the soil, water and light requirements by using search engines.
by Will Creed on April 02, 2006 07:34 AM

Move your ZZ into a small pot that is just large enough to accommodate the tuber and roots. Lots of bright light - right on a windowsill is best. Warm temps help roots develop. Add a little peat moss to the cactus soil for water retention. Skip the fertilizer for the first year. Don't be too quick to move it into a larger pot.
by joclyn on April 02, 2006 12:32 PM
okay, i'll plant it as soon as i can - i've a few pots that are the perfect size.

i put it on the windowsill in the kitchen - faces west and gets bright, indirect light for most of the afternoon. the plant seems to be doing well there, so i guess i'll leave it there once it's planted.

thanks, will!!
by lcyrose on April 03, 2006 08:02 AM
I am going to ask a dumb question...what is a ZZ plant?
by Will Creed on April 03, 2006 10:16 AM
A ZZ plant is a relatively new plant available commercially. If you do a Google image search you can find out what they look like. They are a great plant for a wide rage of light and for folks who tend to neglect their plants or are away for long periods of time. ZZ's can go a month or more without water and are quite pest resistant. They only thing they don't like are large pots and frequent waterings.

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