Zamioculcas zamiifolia ‘Zenzi’, also known as ZZ ‘Zenzi’ is the perfect plant for you if you’re short on space and don’t have a lot of light to play with in your home.
It’s a dwarf cultivar of the ZZ plant, and looks a lot like most ZZ plants, except the growth is fuller, and it doesn’t get as tall as its other relatives.
It still possesses the great qualities of a regular ZZ plant (see also How To Get Your ZZ Raven Plant To Thrive), where it is adaptable to very low light conditions, it will do absolutely fine if you leave it to its own devices for a week (or three), and it is very easy to care for.
Interested in growing your own ZZ Zenzi plant? Here’s everything you need to know.
Is A ZZ Plant A Succulent?
First, we should clarify something. While ZZ plants do have some traits that are shared with a lot of succulents, ZZ plants themselves are not classed as succulents.
For one thing, these plants are tolerant of growing under any kind of light condition, from bright and indirect to no natural sunlight at all (provided there is a grow light or fluorescent light involved), and this is not something that succulents can cope with.
It’s easy to confuse ZZ plants as succulents, as they can and do go without water for long periods, and they are very robust, and have thick leaves.
But place this plant in direct sunlight for more than a few hours at a time, and watch the poor thing decline. ZZ plants cannot tolerate bright sunlight for long!
But these plants are semi-succulent, which means they have similar qualities to succulent plants, but not enough to classify them as full succulents.
A Note On Toxicity
It’s worth noting that all ZZ plants are toxic to pets. Keep them well out of reach of pets and children, as the worry is not worth the risk.
How To Tell The Difference Between A ZZ Plant And ZZ Zenzi
The Zenzi ZZ plant is a cultivar of the ZZ plant species, which means that it has been created by us to have certain traits.
In the case of Zenzi, it’s been bred to have a smaller eventual height but fuller growth than the regular ZZ plant species. So this plant will not reach the height of a regular ZZ plant (which is around 4 feet), and instead will reach about 45cm tall.
ZZ Plant ‘Zenzi’ Care Guide
While Zenzi is a cultivated variety of the ZZ plant, the care it needs is the same as the regular species.
These plants are extremely easy to look after even for beginners, and their unique looks mean that they remain a favorite of houseplant enthusiasts everywhere.
While they can thrive in growing conditions that other plants would rapidly decline in, it’s worth giving them more ideal conditions, as this will really show them off at their best.
Adaptable To Different Light Levels
The ZZ plant is one of the few plants that will survive with no natural light at all, provided that you give it some form of light.
This makes it perfect for an office with overhead lighting, for example. If you find that your plant starts to look ill, and the growth starts to space out, with more and more room in between each leaf, the plant is getting leggy, and it’s time to give it a brighter position.
To truly get the best out of this plant, it ideally needs more light. As these plants grow quite slowly, it’s best to provide it with more light if you can, preferably in front of a window.
Try to avoid placing it in a South-facing window, as the prolonged sunlight is too much for the plant. If this is all you have, set the plant further back from the window, or use a sheer curtain.
Some direct sunlight can give the plant a boost, as long as it isn’t for more than a couple of hours a day.
Average Household Temperatures And Humidity
Aim for temperatures between 65°F and 80°F, or 18°C and 27°C. You don’t even need to worry about humidity, as these plants do just fine in drier air.
Sharply Draining Soil Mix
This plant needs sharp drainage, so an ideal mixture would be 2 parts cactus compost, and one part pumice to give the plant what it needs.
Allow The Soil To Dry Out
Thanks to the underground storage system, ZZ Zenzi can go without water for prolonged periods, but there is always a point where it can be too long.
Once the potting mix completely dries out, water your plant thoroughly. Wait until it dries out again before you pick up the watering can.
Don’t leave it for weeks when it has dried out, as the plant won’t thank you for that!
How To Propagate ZZ ‘Zenzi’
There are three different ways of propagating a ZZ plant: you can take stem cuttings, leaf cuttings, or divide the plant at the roots when it needs to be repotted.
ZZ ‘Zenzi’ is a beautiful plant, perfect for those who are short on space, natural light, and time, as this plant isn’t demanding.
It’s a good idea to give it more light and fertilize it regularly, to help support the slow-growth rate, otherwise you may be waiting a while for new growth to appear!