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ZZ Plant Flower: Everything You Need to Know

A close friend gave me a young ZZ (Zamioculcas zamiifolia) plant on my birthday. Seven springs passed before I could finally enjoy watching it bloom.

Native to East Africa, this ZZ plant has adorned my study room ever since. Although the ZZ plant is a flowering plant, it rarely flowers.

Generally, the ZZ plant flowers from the middle of summer to the beginning of autumn when it is 5 to 6 years old. ZZ plant flowers are unique, with spathe and spadix in yellow, creamy white, bronze, and pale green.

ZZ plant inflorescence
ZZ plant produces inflorescence containing spathe and spadix, which are not exactly pretty.

However, sometimes, things are not the way we want them to be. What if your ZZ plant starts flowering in an immature stage?

Well, do not worry! This article will explain what you can do if your ZZ plant starts blooming while it is still young.

Moreover, making a ZZ plant bloom is fun if you like challenges that put your patience to the test.

Continue reading the article to learn how to make them bloom and how to care for them after they bloom.

How Often does the ZZ Plant Flower?

ZZ plants are famous among avid gardeners for their bushy and unique foliage.

The Zz plants must be at least 5 to 6 years old to bloom. They rarely bloom in the wild and even rarely indoors.

Inflorescence of ZZ plant
ZZ plant has to be at least 5 to 6 years old to bloom.

This perennial, tropical plant usually flowers during mid-summer. However, the blooming season can last till early autumn.

Although the plant has a lifespan of about 10 to 12 years, its blooms will last about a mere 48 hours after they appear.

So, do not expect your plant to bloom every year. They may reappear, but that would require intensive care, and the blooming may be irregular.

ZZ Plant Flower Overview

ZZ plant is the acronym for Zamioculcas zamiifolia. It is commonly known as the Zanzibar gem, zeezee plant, aroid palm, and in some regions as the eternity plant.

Although ZZ plants are classified as flowering plants, they rarely flower.

Many people admire the plant for its beautiful lush green small oval-shaped foliage rather than its flowers.

ZZ plant in a white pot in its full growing stage
Many people admire the ZZ plant because of its lush green oval-shaped foliage rather than its flowers.

The ZZ plant produces unattractive flowers, but you will love the creamy white ZZ plant flowers if you find simple things beautiful.

Let us look at the basic overview of the ZZ plant flower.

IndicatorIdentity
StructureLong spadix with numerous small flowers surrounded by a spathe.
SizeUp to 7 inches long
ColorWhitish-yellow to brown-bronze
FragranceNo fragrance
ToxicityToxic to pets and humans
LifespanUp to 48 hours
FruitsSmall berry-like fruits
Blooming SeasonMid-summer to early-autumn.

People usually do not prefer to see their ZZ plant flowers as they are not very showy.

The ZZ plants bloom once in a blue moon, and there are no pollinators indoors. As a result, the chances of your plant producing seeds are slim.

After pollination, the female flowers get fertilized; hence, the plant produces a berry type of fruit with one or two seeds.

The seeds are ellipsoidal, monocotyledonous, and are quite rare to come across.

How do you Pollinate the ZZ plant flower?

The inflorescence of the ZZ plant is called a cob consisting of female flowers at the bottom and male flowers at the top.

There are rows of sterile flowers in between. As a result, there is a low chance of self-pollination.

Hence, crawling insects naturally pollinate the flowers. Who knew ants and beetles could help you with your gardening?

Upon maturity, the flower bends down as low as possible, hoping that some crawling insect will climb on the spathe. But the plant has one more trick up its sleeve.

The female flowers produce pheromones or perfume to lure male insects. These insects are led to believe that the pheromones are created by their female counterparts.

Beetle
Insects like beetle and ants are pivotal for pollinating the ZZ plant.

So, they crawl past the male flowers at the top of the cob. Attached to their bodies are tiny pollen grains that they drop off when crawling over female flowers at the bottom of the cob.

All of this occurs under the influence of pheromones. Hence, the pollination process is completed, and fertilization takes place.

The fertilized female flowers appear white, and fruits are formed shortly after.

How to Make a ZZ Plant Flower?

Here comes the hard part: making the ZZ plant bloom. Consider several factors if you want to see your adorable plant bloom.

Here are some tips to make your ZZ plant bloom.

  • Maintain a temperature between 60-80°F for your plant to provide a good environment for flowering.
  • Give your ZZ plant at least 8 hours of bright indirect sunlight daily. Your plant will thrive in the west or north-facing window.
  • Provide Succulent fertilizer rich in phosphorus for your ZZ plant every 2 to 3 weeks during the growing season.
  • A well-draining potting mix with extra sand and perlite can benefit the ZZ plant.
  • Water your ZZ plant once every two weeks during summer and once every two months during colder seasons.
  • Maintain humidity between 40 to 50% for your plant. 
ZZ Plant humidity
You should be careful while providing humidity for the ZZ plant. Too much moisture can kill the plant.
  • Select a pot of size 7-11 inches for a mature ZZ plant.
  • Check the plant regularly for the signs of pests and diseases and eliminate them in time.
  • Prune the damaged, diseased, or dead stems and leaves in the spring and summer to encourage blooming.

Make sure you are not trying to make the plant flower during its dormancy, i.e., winter. All your efforts will be in vain.

Why is my ZZ Plant Not Flowering?

Your ZZ plants are not blooming? Well, it could be one of the following reasons.

FactorsReasons
Inadequate Sunlight Succulents like ZZ need a lot of light to bloom.
Temperature ExtremitiesZZ cannot handle the extreme fluctuations and won't be able to produce blossoms in such conditions.
Improper FertilizerIf you choose fertilizer that is rich in nitrogen but not phosphorus, it may hinder blossoming.
Over fertilizationToo much fertilizers will cause salt buildup in the roots.
Improper ContainerIf the planter is too big or too small for the ZZ plant, say bye bye to the idea of seeing the blooms.
Lack of Air CirculationLack of proper air circulation can degrade plant health and discourage blooms.
Pruning in Wrong TimeIf you prune the ZZ plant in wrong time, the plant will get stressed and focus its energy on the foliage.

What Should you do With Your ZZ Plant Flower?

Although the flowers are not much of a show, some people still choose to leave them as they are.

You should consider leaving the flower on the plant. Just enjoy its simple beauty.

It becomes quite a dilemma when an immature ZZ plant starts flowering.

Should you call yourself lucky or unlucky?

Flowering soaks away a lot of your plant’s strength. You must be especially concerned when it comes to a young ZZ plant.

If your ZZ plant flowered in an immature stage, it risks contracting various diseases. Your best bet is to take out the flower and let your plant mature.

ZZ plant young flower
ZZ plant may flower even when it is still young.

How to Remove the Flower from the ZZ Plant?

If your plant is mature, but you still want to remove the flower, here’s what you can do:

  • Wear protective gardening gear and sterilize the gardening equipment.
  • Grab the inflorescence with your hand and cut the bloom off the connecting stem.
  • You can also snip off the stalk of the flower at the base. But make sure you do not hurt the plant.

It is important to note that you should stop fertilizing your ZZ plant after it flowers. You can reduce the watering frequency well.

Avoid performing any transplants and propagations at all costs after the plant flowers.

ZZ plant has many benefits like purifying air, medicinal uses, table plant, etc., but the flowers do not have any specific uses to mention.

Health Considerations to Keep in Mind

ZZ plant may make a good addition to the decorations of your house, but it has one very important drawback you should consider.

All parts of the ZZ plant are toxic to you and your pets. This is because the cell sap contains calcium oxalate.

ZZ plant toxic to pets
ZZ plant contains calcium oxalate crystals that can be dangerous to your pets.

Calcium oxalate is a compound that has a crystalline structure with sharp edges. Therefore, we recommend you wear safety gloves when handling leaves, stems, or seeds.

Pro Tip: It is always a good idea to wash your hands thoroughly after handling the ZZ plant.

If you have little children or playful pets in your living space, then you must consider moving the ZZ plant to a high place.

Even though consuming the plant parts is not fatal, serious symptoms like diarrhea and vomiting might occur. Mild symptoms include burning, pain, and swelling of the skin area upon contact with the plant sap.

If there is skin contact with the plant sap, use soap and warm water on the affected part to get instant relief.

In case of emergency, call ASPCA at 1 (888) 426-4435 or Pet Poison Helpline at 855-764-7661.

Read more: Are ZZ Plants Toxic to Cats?

ZZ Plant Flower Meaning

One of the common names for the ZZ plant is ‘fortune tree,’ so you must have had the idea about its significance.

Speaking of common names, the ZZ plant has a plethora of them. Let us look at the terms and their meanings.

  • ‘Fortune tree’ signifies that the plant brings good luck and fortune.
  • ‘Eternity plant’ signifies that the ZZ plant is a sign of growth and assistance.
  • ‘Zanzibar gems’ signifies their spotless, dark green leaves.

According to the Chinese feng shui, the ZZ plant placed in the bedroom, dining area, and the main door is responsible for spreading positive energy to the surrounding.

You can also gift this plant to someone to signify encouragement, dedication, and steadiness.

The glossy, dark green leaves that give the plant an artificial look signify vibrant life and the colorful flowers signify a bright mind.

Watch the video to learn about ZZ plant care tips.

Conclusion

To summarize, the ZZ plant deserves a spot in your living space if you love indoor plants. While the flowers may not be all that special, you will still love them after the long wait.

Even if you do not end up with a ZZ plant with a flower, the shiny dark green leaves will make an eye-catching display.

Get one for yourself!

Want to find out more about the ZZ plant? Read our article on ZZ plant benefits 

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