How to Care for a ZZ Plant

How to Care for a ZZ Plant

Use these instructions to care for a ZZ Plant. This guide will tell you how to water your ZZ Plant; its light, temperature, and humidity preferences; and any additional care your plant might need to help it grow.

ZZ plants do best in moderate to bright indirect light, but will do fine in extremely low light areas. If the light is too intense for your ZZ, you may see some scaling (brown spots) on the leaves. Curling leaves can also indicate too much light. This plant is ideal for a windowless office or bathroom where it will only receive a small amount of light from fluorescent lights.

The ZZ Plant is like a cactus in that it needs less, rather than more, water. Water your ZZ Plant only when the soil is dry—perhaps every 1-2 weeks depending on your indoor climate. Let the water drain through the bottom, empty the saucer of any water, and then allow to dry out again. One of the only ways you can kill this low maintenance plant is to over water it. A ZZ Plant that turns yellow means that it is getting too much water and it may be rotting.

This plant does not require any extra humidity.

Fertilize your ZZ twice a year with a general purpose plant food.

As a survival technique, the ZZ Plant has evolved to start dropping its leaflets to conserve moisture during periods of severe drought. If you forget to water yours and see the leaves fall off, don’t give up hope! Water your plant immediately and it should come back. This plant is shiny on its own, never spray with leaf shine. Ignore this plant and it will be happiest.

ZZ Plants are mildly toxic to pets and humans. Typically, ingestion will cause mouth and stomach irritation and possible vomiting.