ZZ Plant...Cuttings?

gardenbug(8b)June 29, 2005

Hi, I have a ZZ plant which I've had for about 2 years and is seems quite healthy (5 branches, 2ft tall. I want to start 2 new plants for each of my grown sons because these plants are soooo easy to care for. I thought they'd be the perfect plant for these guys since they both tend to forget to water their plants. How do I go about starting new plants? Please I need step-by-step instructions. BTW, what kind of fertilizer is best for the ZZ plant. I appreciate any/all help that I receive.

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HabRob(z7 PA)

I'm attempting to do this myself right now. Goto the link below and scroll down to the propagation section for instructions. You make rootings from the leaflets by planting the leaflet in a rooting mix about halfway in and wait. It can take up to a year. The leaflet will begin to form a tuber and grow roots. The leaflet will die back but the tuber will remain and soon start to send up a leaf stalk. The link I've added is the best info on the web I could find concerning this plant.

As for fertilizing I used a mix of seaweed extract and fish emuslion. I just got my ZZ about 6 weeks ago. The plant must have liked it because I have two new leaf stalks pop up and two more that are just breaking the surface of the soil.

Here is a link that might be useful: http://members.chello.at/norbert.anderwald/Zamioculcas/index_e.htm

    Bookmark   June 29, 2005 at 4:21PM
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gardenbug(8b)

Hi HabRob! Thank you very much for this link. Yes - it does have some very helpful information and I've bookmarked the page. Extract and fish emuslion? Where can you purchase it? Forgive my lack of knowledge but will it make your house smell fishy? I appreciate the help.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2005 at 4:54PM
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HabRob(z7 PA)

I have the stuff on hand because its the best fertilizer I've found for peppers(habaneros) and tomatos. THe fish emulsion(4-1-1) I use is Alaska brand which seems to be low/no odor but some brands are quite fishy smelling. If you have a cat it may not be the best fertilizer to use for indoor plants since it tends to attract the attention of cats who will dig in your pots or garden after an application. THe fish emulsion I got at walmart but I've seen it at both lowes and Home depot. I order the seaweed extract/concentrate(0-4-4) from Johnny's select seeds online and off hand I think the manufacturer is "PGR". The seaweed extract provides alot of trace nurtients and hormones as well. It makes an excellent foliar feed.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2005 at 5:20PM
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plantermunn

Zz will root very well. I knocked one off and just put it in the fish bowl. It rooted. I stuck another in the dirt same result.

Some people say you can root a leaf. I have never tried that.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2005 at 5:25PM
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gardenbug(8b)

PlanterMunn, thanks for the information. Obviously there must be a connection with fish? - HabRob (above) used "fish emulsion" and you stuck yours in a "fish bowl" hmmm maybe something to that? ZZZZ LOL

BTW - What kind of soil are you folks using for your ZZ??

    Bookmark   June 29, 2005 at 6:30PM
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gardenbug(8b)

Hi HabRob, No I don't have a cat, so maybe I will consider the fish emulsion. Thank you for telling me the kind you use. Since it's doesn't smell real fishy, I will try it. I hope my plant doesn't end up with scales... LOL

    Bookmark   June 29, 2005 at 6:33PM
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Cena(S CA 10A)

Don't be fooled by all this new growth. Zamioculcas zamiifolia (NOW you know why they call it ZZ!) put up new growth, only once a year. Since it is a tuber, they store up 'energy' and produce this growth only once during the active growing period.

I wish to welcome you all to HousePlants Forum. Not too often we get such a crop of totally new posters!

Awesome plant, when you can find them. I can see why you would wish to start some for your sons!

    Bookmark   June 29, 2005 at 8:41PM
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gardenbug(8b)

Hi Cena, thanks for the nice welcoming. I dont' have a lot of houseplants but I do love my ZZ plant. Can it be transplanted now? It's been in a 4" pot for about a year now and I'd like to put it into a 6" pot. My plant is now about 2'tall. I think this board and the people here are absolutely wonderful. Thanks again!

    Bookmark   June 29, 2005 at 9:41PM
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plantermunn

Cena 2001 you are an old timer.

Now that you have mentioned it my zz has shown some new growth latley.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2005 at 9:48PM
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HabRob(z7 PA)

ZZ plants are rather abundant around here....all the home depots have them right now in my area. I was at a large independent nursery this morning that had at least 25 medium ZZ plants and maybe 6 huge plants that surprized me as I didn't think ZZ plants got that large. The huge plants were $65 a peice. I didn't bother to look at the medium sized.

My ZZ plant with the two new leaf stalks. THere are two more that I can see that have just surfaced but ar still small nubs.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2005 at 10:33PM
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gardenbug(8b)

HabRob; you're ZZ is marvelous. Oh sooo shiny leaves and very healthy looking. What kind of soil are you using? I want to transplant mine from a 4" to a 6" pot, is it okay to do that now? Thank you for sharing your photo. Very nice ZZ!!

    Bookmark   June 30, 2005 at 4:49AM
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JMLehrer(z7 LI NY)

The thickened central axis (petiole, rachis) of one of the leaves on a ZZ of mine split halfway towards the end of a leaf after I walked into it. It was "hanging by a thread" so I left it. After a few months a mini-tuber formed at the break point -- in mid-air!! Kind of like air-layering. I detached it and planted it and it grew fine.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2005 at 9:49AM
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gardenbug(8b)

JMLehrer, That is soooo cool! That must have surprised you. It's nice to know these things just in case I should break one of mine by accident. Thanks for sharing that bit of information.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2005 at 12:46PM
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HabRob(z7 PA)

I used scotts potting soil but found out after I transplanted that I probably should have mixed it with some perlite to improve drainage and aeration or used a Cactus/succulent mix. The potting soil is a bit heavy and holds water better than my ZZ wants or probably needs.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2005 at 3:44PM
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gardenbug(8b)

HabRob, I transplanted my ZZ today and it so far it looks pretty good. I used the soil that was already in the 4" pot because it was sandy and mixed it with regular potting soil w/a bit of perlite and put it in a 6" pot, I hope this will work out fine. I'll take a photo tomorrow and show you mine. Thanks for all your fantastic help.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2005 at 2:46AM
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tommyr_gw

HabRob,
Try using Pro-Mix potting soil. Scotts is WAY too heavy of a mix. Pro-Mix is close to perfect IMHO. Sometimes I will add some extra perlite depending on the plant.

Tom

    Bookmark   July 3, 2005 at 5:32AM
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Gardener972(7b-8a DFW)

I'm experimenting with that myself. I took one apart in the spring because it looked puny. It had started to get root rot over the winter even though the top 3" of the soil was bone dry. I wonder if they get so root bound that this happens? Anyway, I broke apart about half of the plant, stuck leaves, stems, partial stems, half stems, everything in dirt. It takes a LONG time but I'm getting roots on all of them.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2005 at 2:36PM
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greenlarry(UK 8/9)

I have a leaf going, i struck it last september and its still not ready!
Slow growing!

    Bookmark   July 3, 2005 at 2:41PM
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pixiedm(Z8 No. FL.)

I recently found a large stalk from a ZZ plant at a nursery laying on the ground. I brought it home, trimmed the callused area off the end, & stuck it in water. I had never heard of this plant but decided to try rooting it this way. In less than 1 month, I have nice roots growing from the base. Will let them get bigger before potting in soil.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2005 at 10:51AM
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martha2(z7NC)

I have 2 zz plants that I have had for a few years now and a few stalks on each of the plants are getting pale green almost a yellow not nice and green like the rest of the plant. does that mean It needs repoting? I havent had new growth on these plants in years.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2005 at 5:36AM
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birdsnblooms

Martha, nope, doesn't mean it needs repotting..
Do you ever fertilize? If so, when you do, use a food high in nitrogen..this will help maintain nice, green leaves.
Actually, I think ZZ's do best when a bit potbound.
Fertilize when plant is producing growth. (Not in winter)

ZZ's also need to dry between waterings so it's possible your overwatering..
They are slow growers, but if you've had this plant for years it should have put out new leaves. (S)
Maybe your plant is really roobound..what size pot is it in and how tall is the plant?
You can always add new soil on top for the time being..then in spring, repot, andding new soil..One that is well-draining. Toni

    Bookmark   November 14, 2005 at 4:18PM
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rainbowtrout

I just found that something is eating holes in the young leaves that are nearest to the soil. In digging around, I found no bugs or slugs, but did find some small (3 mm) aqua colored spheres. When I opened them, they had liquid inside. What are these? What can I do about the holes? Also, has anyone had their plant bloom? I read that they bloom in mid-summer. Thanks.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2006 at 12:01PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi Rainbow,

This is an older thread & therefore might escape folks' attention. May I suggest you please post this as a separate question, it's likely to get more responses.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2006 at 12:54AM
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msjoyce

I recently got this great plant as a gift but I feel that is is too bunched it looks to be about 8 plants in a 10 inch pot is that too much?

    Bookmark   September 17, 2006 at 1:48PM
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joy4me(z6 NY)

I agree with hopefulauthor on the ZZ liking to be pot bound too. Yellowing leaves?. Is the ZZ in the same pot in which you brought it home? Sometimes the soil is not properly mixed coming from the nursery/store. Thus, the water runs down the outer rim of the pot, not penetrating the root-ball.. Same thing can happen if re-potted and the root-ball has non-porous soil.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2006 at 8:33PM
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gobluedjm

Rainbowtrout, those blue spheres are most likely plant food.

Msjoyce it could be or not. It depends on how big they are.
I have mine in a 12 inch pot and has about 20. It came in a 10 inch pot and I had to cut the plastic pot off.
I water it about every 6 weeks and had new shoots in early summer.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2006 at 10:22PM
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tootswisc(z4/5Wi)

Every 6 weeks...how can you allow yourself to neglect giving water to a plant, lol. I'm thirsty, I'm thirsty is all I can hear your plant saying.

I have trouble skipping one week let alone 6. My plant looks great. Are you saying ignoring it for 6 weeks is better care. This is truly the perfect plant.

btw...it was nice to see a post from cena...that deserter...one must visit the garden forum site to talk to her these days.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2006 at 7:48PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

I water mine every week or every other week at the latest, mine are small & young. Have started them all myself either from single leaves, bare stalks or my newest 3rd one, from a full branch which I water rooted last April. It grew a green tuber which I let get the size of a green pea & then potted it up. Month or 2 later I got a new shoot which now has 2 leaves. All deeply green, healthy looking beauties. This too gets water once a wk, can't imagine letting them go 6 wks, yikes!

But to each his own, whatever works for the individual.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2006 at 11:39PM
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msjoyce

Thanks for the info (gobluejm) I am new at this I was thinking of rolling it around until it came lose. Repotting it today keep your fingers crossed.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2006 at 12:06PM
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christinapink

My Boss has a zz plant in here office and cut off a branch and gave it to me. I had it in a glass of water for 2 months and then I potted it. Will it grow? Is there anything I am missing.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2006 at 6:05PM
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birdsnblooms

Christina, I don't know much about rooting ZZ plants, but will try helping. Did it have roots when you potted it up?
How does it look? Is it still green? Don't expect much growth, especially this time of yr since they're slow-growing..As long as it looks green then it's probably doing something in the soil..Toni

    Bookmark   November 13, 2006 at 11:27PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi Christina,

Yes, it should grow, especially if it's an entire branch. I did this last Spring (as I wrote earlier in this thread); someone gave me a whole single branch w/ 7 pairs of leaves on it.

I placed it in a vase of water & over a month or so it grew what looked like a small green pea-sized ball. That's the tuber, there were also a couple of small white roots w/ that.

Once I had that, I took it out of the vase of water & potted it up in mix, but didn't water too often, maybe every 10 days or so. After a while (month or 2) it threw a small shoot, which turned out to be a new branch (or stem) w/ a pair of leaves on it.

As Toni suggests, it may go a bit more slowly now as it's not the preferred time of year to do this, but it should work. Pls. be patient & once you pot it up, don't water it too often.

If for some reason the visible part of the plant dries up, don't toss it, the tuber is usually still active below the mix where we can't see it & can still produce a plant.

You just need to be really patient w/ this, but it WILL happen.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2006 at 12:15AM
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christinapink

It was still green and healthy looking. There was no tuber or roots when I potted it.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2006 at 12:52PM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Just curious, if it had no roots or tuber, what made you decide to switch it from vase of water to potted up? Not criticizing, just asking; I do think it'll be fine either way; these plants seem programmed to survive almost anything.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2006 at 6:24PM
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christinapink

I have potted many plants that did not have roots or tubers and they are just great. I thought I would try it and see if this plant would root.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2006 at 11:52AM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Thanks for answering. It should, but I wouldn't take it out anytime soon to check. If it were mine, I'd just wait to see signs of new growth to be certain, & again, it may take quite some time.

    Bookmark   November 16, 2006 at 12:52AM
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flash14756(z6 Boise, Idaho USA)

I want to get one, check out this link, cool pics

Here is a link that might be useful: Interesting Images

    Bookmark   November 18, 2006 at 10:27PM
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dynishal

Hmm, these posts get me to thinking. I've had a ZZ cutting in water for about 6 weeks now, but so far, there's no sign of a root or tuber developing. (I'm in Brooklyn & got the cutting from a friend in Austin, TX.) I've been toying with the idea of planting the stem. Though I won't be able to watch for new developments with the stem tip beneath soil, I think the plant may be more content, since it prefers dryer conditions. Given the time of the year, it may be a while before any rooting happens, and I'd hate to have the stem rot on me from being immersed in water for that whole time.

Christinapink, please write again to let us know how your plant develops. I fell in love with these plants in South Africa and had a hard time finding one here until recently. Then last week, I went to my local Ikea and found that ZZs were their "plant of the week!" They were selling fairly large, healthy plants for $24. So, if you're looking for a ZZ, Ikea may be a good place to check. I held off on buying one, out of loyalty to my cutting . . .

    Bookmark   November 26, 2006 at 2:11PM
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lyn2011_comcast_net

i propagated zz's when i was in honolulu. it took me 7 months to have a shoot come out of the soil using an adult leaf buried halfway standing up in potting soil. watching it develop the shoot from a leaf is a very rewarding experience. i look forward to buy a plant and propagate it this way again now that i am in california. i hope it will work, too, in this kind of weather.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2011 at 4:47PM
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