Heavyweight ZZ plant hangs on in there

It’s handy having all those tubers and roots as a source of strength

Zamioculcas zamiifolia won’t hold it against you if you forget to water it. Not even if you forget three times. And although it’s more productive in a light spot, it won’t think it’s the end of the world if it’s placed somewhere a bit darker. In other words, it’s a very relaxed housemate from the Sansevieria family. Attractive to look at, suitable for some trendy styling and almost indestructible. 

Zamioculcas zamiifolia Thejoyofplants.co.uk

Firm base with satellites 

ZZ plant's hardiness comes from its root system. It has quite an unusual way of growing for a houseplant. Under the soil there is a sizeable, thick tuber which can reach a diameter of twenty centimetres. After a while a host of small tubers are added. Thick roots emerge from the top of the primary tuber.

They’re so strong that they can break a pot if it’s too small, but don’t be tempted to place it in a mega-pot. That contains a lot of earth which retains a lot of moisture, which is the one thing the plant can’t cope with. 

Self-sufficient reservoir 

ZZ plants largely regulate their own water supply. For that reason literally everything about the plant is thick: the tuber, the roots, the stems and the leaves. It makes the whole plant one large storage reservoir for water and nutrients. You can see that from the rootball: a big bundle of energy. This energy is obvious in what emerges above the soil: strength, a primeval appearance and calm. Just what you need in order to reboot.