Zamioculcas zamiifolia or Zanzibar Gem is a robust tropical flowering plant. Even though this plant is mainly native to Africa, the ZZ plant is now a popular houseplant worldwide.
The reason behind this familiarity is the surviving power of the herb in an unfavorable environment.
That is why the ZZ plant is the best choice for a forgetful or lazy gardener.
The robust herb can thrive in adverse situations like low light, hot and arid weather, infertile soil, and even pest infestation. But, to maintain the speed of the growth, you need to repot the plant annually.
How to repot a ZZ plant?
Like any other indoor plant, the ZZ tree also flags signs that it wants repotting. But, we often overlook the signals, as they lie underground. It is easy for any gardener to spot the abnormalities related to flowers, leaves, or any parts that stay above the soil.
But, inexperienced gardeners often miss the root-related issues.
The rootbound or congregated root ball situation shows various symptoms like restricted growth, withered brown leaves, dried-up soil, dehydration, and an overall wilted ZZ plant.
However, if you change the pot of the ZZ plant annually, the risk of getting rootbound decreases.
Also, when the rhizomes get enough place to spread out, they become less prone to catch fungal diseases.
The repotting of your plant at least once a year also promotes a long, healthy life for your ZZ plant.
Transfering the houseplant in a bigger pot every year also reduces the risk of clustered root balls and deteriorated mold.
ZZ plant generally is a neglect-tolerant plant that thrives in a low-light, arid climate. As a result, the shrub is so familiar as a sturdy indoor plant.
Plus, its adaptability power has made the ZZ plant thrive well in any soil.
So, while repotting, you can use any potting mixture for your robust houseplant. Here we have shared the task of changing the container of the herb in detail.
Keep the items within reach
An effective repotting requires a few essentials. First, you need to purchase sphagnum peat moss for a good potting mixture.
Along with it, horticulture perlite will make the soil more fertile. Also, you can arrange organic compost and sterilized loam to add them to the potting medium.
The next thing you will need is a garden trowel.
While changing the pot, you will also require some tools. In that case, hand pruners, root hooks, and utility knives are enough to complete the job. In addition to it, you will need an enormous tub than the current one since you are repotting the ZZ plant.
Getting the potting mixture ready
After arranging all the essential items, first, you need to get the potting medium ready. A fertile, nutrient-rich potting mixture helps your ZZ plant to thrive well. So, while repotting the herb, make sure you use the most effective potting medium to plant the tree.
You can also follow our recipe for making a potting mixture.
We suggest mixing an equal amount of sphagnum peat moss, organic compost, horticulture perlite, and sterilized soil. All these ingredients will increase the nutritional value of the mold.
While measuring the products, a passionate gardener need not show any stinginess regarding the quantity.
Use enough of all the essentials so that you can fill the new larger pot. Here, we will give you an example so that you can estimate the quantity. If the tub has 16 inches depth, you will need four parts of each ingredient to mix.
Irrigation is another important step
You need to spray the ZZ plant until the water completely drains from the container. If the houseplant is suffering from a rootbound condition, irrigation is a vital step to follow before transferring the plant.
If you are not familiar with rootbound situations, examine whether your ZZ plant shows some typical symptoms.
Such signs can include fractured containers, excessive withering, dwarfism of the houseplant, and immature browning of the foliage. You can also spot the rhizomes come through the drainage hole of the pot.
Shake the pot to remove the plant
Now, it is time to take out your ZZ plant from the container. So, you need to place your hand on top of the soil and flip the tub upside down.
It is the most effective way to remove a herb from a 4-10 inches container.
The method ensures no harm to your favorite plant.
Now, you need to shake the tub up and down to lose up the root balls. After shaking the pot, you will notice the root ball slides out from the tub.
Remove the old soil
After removing your ZZ plant from the old pot, scrape off the mold from the root ball. First, try to remove as much soil as possible by hand. Detruncate the twisted roots with the help of garden shears or hand pruners.
These vital steps will help the roots grow healthy and fast.
Also, trim any black, sick, and swollen roots with the help of a pruner. Then, with the help of a utility knife and a root hook, untangle the stiff root balls as much as possible.
A few tasks before final plantation
Now you need to arrange the ingredients in the new pot. First, place a mesh screen at the bottom of the new container. On top of that, position an adequate amount of moist potting mixture.
The final task of replantation
After arranging the new container with the potting medium, you need to place the ZZ plant on the potting mixture. The root ball of the houseplant needs to sit almost one inch below the lip of the tub.
But, if you notice the rhizomes sit below more than one inch, add a bit more mold.
Now, try to divide as many root strands as possible, and spread them at the bottom of the new container. It will help the rhizomes of your elegant ZZ plant to thrive well.
Then, fill the blank space of the pot with the moist potting mixture. Do not press the medium but, allow the water to settle down the soil.
After repotting the ZZ plant, the gardener needs to monitor the herb and look after it carefully. That will ensure the 100% surviving chance of the houseplant.
Do ZZ Plants Like to Be Rootbound?
No, the ZZ plant does not prefer to be rootbound. Like any other indoor plant, this sturdy plant does not like to stay in a small container. The tiny pot hinders the growth of the rhizomes of the ZZ plant. As a result, the phenomenon influences the overall growth of the shrub. Stunted root growth prevents the plant from thriving rapidly.
In the case of a healthy ZZ tree, the roots grow large and spread widely underground.
As the plant thrives, so do the roots, and the rhizomes want to take more space.
But, while living in a small tub, the rootlets have to stay there forcefully also in a clustered condition. The phenomenon can increase the risk of root rot and other fungal infections.
As we have said earlier, the ZZ plant thrives along with its roots. The matured rhizomes replace the entire mold. If you are a newbie gardener, it could be difficult for you to understand the rootbound situation.
So, here we will tell you how you can identify the rootbound of your favorite ZZ plant.
After keeping the herb in a smaller pot for a very long time, the rhizomes get clustered and take the form of a root ball. The stiff, cluster root ball fails to absorb adequate nutrients from the soil.
As the rhizomes do not get enough area to thrive, they form a congregated ball form.
So, this phenomenon leads to brown, rotted roots. If the gardener does not repot the ZZ plant in this condition, it can kill the herb. In addition, the rootbound situation can create excessive drainage issues.
Whenever you water a plant, the soil absorbs the moisture.
But, when the clustered root of the plant displaces the mold, no growing medium is present there to absorb the moisture.
As a result, the water directly passes through the drainage hole. So, your thriving ZZ plant cannot take adequate hydration.
The sooner you identify the problem, the sooner the tree will recover. Often some gardeners ignore such issues. But little do they know that a trivial rootbound condition has the worst consequences ever.
It leads the ZZ plant wilted and pale.
If you cannot examine the shrub thoroughly at this point, it will be impossible for you to save the graceful plant. As a passionate indoor gardener, you should never want that.
You need to repot the ZZ plant immediately when you see the rootbound condition of the herb. Expert gardeners suggest repotting any houseplant at least once a year, as it promotes growth.
But, to keep your likable ZZ plant thriving, you need to check its root frequently.
The constant monitoring can help you distinguish the problem and repot the shrub at the earliest.
Since every plant has different requirements and distinct thriving speeds, we suggest repotting your ZZ plant whenever needed. We hope our article will help you perform a successful repotting.