Zanzibar Gem

The Zanzibar GemTM (Zamioculcas zamiifolia) is a beautiful design of nature that is virtually indestructible. It is a very straight forward plant to take care of and is incredibly versatile and trendy with its glossy leaves and contemporary structure.

Your Zanzibar GemTM won’t kick up a fuss if you forget to water it and it will remain obediently green without complaint. It can tolerate a lot of neglect due to its excellent root structure. The Zamioculcas zamiifolia originates from Zanzibar Island in Tanzania. Due to the harsh and dry environment of Zanzibar Island the Zanzibar GemTM has a large tuber system under the soil that stores water. This allows the plant to regulate its own water supply and produce a strong, stable plant.

The Zamioculcas zamiifolia isn’t a rapid grower, and while it doesn’t mind a shady spot it will be much more productive in a bright location. It will reach around 90cm in height and maintain un upright growth structure if it receives good light levels. A Zanzibar GemTM will be happy in its same pot for a number of years, but it will need repotting into a larger pot when the tubers become root bound. Make sure that you use a free draining soil mix.

Overall, the Zanzibar GemTM is a very relaxed plant. It is the perfect choice for those who are time poor or for an office environment where a plant that requires minimal care is desired. One of the best traits of the Zanzibar GemTM is that it has air purifying qualities. A study completed by the University of Copenhagen found it to be successful in removing volatile organic compounds benzene, ethylbezene, toluene and xylene making indoor air healthier for humans to breathe.

Common Names: ZZ Plant, Zanzibar Gem, Aroid Palm, Eternity Plant, Golden Tree, Zu Zu Plant

Zanzibar Gem Plant Care


Your Zanzibar GemTM will be quite happy with indoor temperatures. It won’t tolerate temperatures below 16°C if left outside on a patio. It is best not to be left in fluctuating temperatures.


The Zanzibar GemTM likes bright light but avoid direct sun light. It can tolerate low light levels.


Let your Zanzibar GemTM plant dry out between watering’s. Water less during cooler months. They don’t like to be overwatered as this can cause the stems and rhizomes to rot.


A Zanzibar GemTM will be happy in the same pot for a few years. Should you need to re-pot it, select a pot that is about 5cm larger with good drainage holes.


Use a good quality potting mix that is fast draining


If a stem grows too big for the rest of the plant don’t hesitate to remove it completely. If any leaves yellow it is fine to cut them away.


During spring use an all-purpose liquid plant food to promote new growth.


The Zanzibar GemTM can be toxic and should not be ingested by humans or animals.

Potential Problems

Lower leaves are yellowing: A few yellow leaves here and there around the base of the plant is normal for the Zanzibar GemTM. If a lot of leaves are yellowing, ensure that you are not overwatering.

Leaves are Browning: This will generally be caused by overwatering, where the leaves feel damp and soft.

Tips of the leaf are turning brown: This is often a sign that the air is dry and the plant requires more humidity. Try misting the plant.