Signs My ZZ Plant Is Dying

It is Zanzibar jewel is known as a houseplant that is easy to care for and they thrive in the lack of attention! But, these tough plants face a variety of common problems that affect their health and appearance.

While the ZZ plant is a great choice for those with the most black thumbs but not everyone is able to keep this beautiful beauty alive. How do we tell when the ZZ plants is dying?

The most common symptoms of a dying ZZ plant are the leaves turning brown or yellow and tips that are brown and a scalding or falling foliage and black spots on the stalks that bend wrinkled bulbs or roots, rhizomes, and a slow growth. Make sure you provide adequate sunlight and water, as well as soil as well as fertilizers to maintain your plant in good health.

The key to keeping your ZZ plant healthy (or any other plant in your home) is to recognize and recognize the root causes and related issues. This article will outline the most common indicators of a declining ZZ plant, and also how to stop the issues from happening again.

Signs That Your ZZ Plant Is Dying

While many believe that ZZ plants thrive on neglect, in reality ZZ plant thrives in neglect All plants require some attention to ensure their survival. They require adequate lighting and regular watering every couple of weeks to thrive.

If your situation is different from the above information Do not be concerned. We’re here to educate you on the 10 most frequent signs that the Zanzibar plants is suffering, and eight great tips to reverse and stop these negative symptoms from returning.

Here is the top 10 indicators that your ZZ plants are dying.

  1. ZZ plant’s leaves are yellowing. ZZ plant’s leaves are turning yellow.
  2. The ZZ plant’s leaves are turning brown.
  3. Brown tips are visible around the edges of the ZZ plant.
  4. Scorched foliage
  5. Leaf drop
  6. Black spots appear on the ZZ stems of the plant
  7. ZZ plant stalks are bent. ZZ plants stalks bent
  8. Rhizomes or bulbs that have wrinkles
  9. Poor or slow growth
  10. Root rot

zz plant

ZZ Plant Dying Common Signs

Let’s talk briefly about the signs:

The ZZ Plant’s Leaves Are Yellowing

Healthy ZZ plant features thick, deep green leaves that have a shiny surface. A sickly plant might show yellowing leaves.

Its leafy yellowcan be a single stem that has a few leaves or the entire plant’s foliage may change color to yellow.

Although yellowing leaves don’t suggest that your plant is dying, they are an obvious sign the Zanzibar plant requires some attention to keep it from dying in the near future.

The yellowing of leaves is usually a sign of:

  • Lack of nutrients A lack of nutrients: Your ZZ plant’s leaves could turn yellow due to the lack of nutrients in your soil. Nitrogen is the element that produces chlorophyll, the pigment that makes plants green.
  • Excessive exposure to sunlight: ZZ plants prefer bright, indirect sunlight. Therefore, if the plant is exposed to direct sunlight for long periods you might observe the leaves turning yellow.
  • Overwatering can damage the ZZ plant’s leaves, causing it to change color to yellow. If the plant is overwatered, its roots remain wet for too long and may drown due to the absence of oxygen. The leaves become yellow and then fall off.

The ZZ Plant’s Leaves Are Turning Brown

Brown leaves are another indicator of it is possible that the ZZ plants is dying. The leaves change color to signal that a component of the maintenance regimen isn’t functioning properly and requires investigation to stop the Zanzibar plant from dying.

It’s normal to see some older leaves to turn get brown and then fall off as they age, there’s something wrong when all of the leaves begin to turn brown suddenly.

Here are some possible causes for leaves turning brown:

  • Water quality is poor: ZZ plants are sensitive to water that is not of high-quality and contains harmful chemicals like chlorine, salts, and fluorine. The unsuitable minerals accumulate within the soil causing an insufficient supply of nutrients and damaging the plant. In the end, the leaves begin to brown.
  • Insufficient sunlight If the ZZ plant is exposed to excessive sun exposure for a long period of time the plant may develop sunburn on its leaves, which can result in brown patches of calloused skin.
  • The ZZ plant is drought-resistant however, waterlogging can cause the rhizomes of the plant to dry out, which can cause brown leaves.
  • Pests: Fungal or Bacterial illnesses can lead to browning of leaves. Pests can affect the health and growth of plants, causing browning the leaves , and eventually leading to death if they are not treated.

Brown Tips On The Edges Of The ZZ Plant’s Leaves

We know that ZZ is a plant that ZZ plant may exhibit the appearance of brown or yellowing leaves. It can also show brown tips along the edges of leaves.

Here’s why:

  • Poor quality water The water that contains harmful minerals such as chlorine, salts and fluorine can affect soil’s quality. In turn, the mineral build-up can harm the roots and causes the plants to become dry and turn brown.
  • Low humidity Low humidity ZZ plant thrives in extremely humid conditions. The moisture allows the plant to grow leaves and stems with vivid green hues. But, low humidity can increase the rate of transpiration and cause it to lose lots of water. If you don’t keep the plant hydrated and it begins to brown, it could cause leaves tips.
  • Too much sun Too much sunlight: A ZZ plant is not tolerant of intense UV rays or long hours of direct, bright sunlight. Long exposure to intense light can cause scorching to the Zanzibar plant’s leaves, which can cause the leaves to wilt and the tips to become brown.

Scorched Leaves

It is important to keep in mind that, despite the fact that ZZ plants are ZZ plant is tough however, it doesn’t tolerate sunlight exposure in direct sunlight well. However, fertilizing too much could also cause scorching of the Zanzibar plant’s leaves.

  • Excessive exposure to sunlight: Long exposure to direct sunlight can cause to cause the plant’s leaves to become dry or burn the leaves of the plant.
  • Over-fertilizing: ZZ plants require minimal fertilizer servings. Over-fertilization can harm the plant and result in burnt leaves. There will be salt deposits appearing as fuzzy, white pieces of soil.

Dropping Leaves

Leaf drop can be a troublesome problem for any plant, as it can be difficult to identify and fix the issue.

If you notice that your ZZ plants dropping several leaves in a single day or if your plant is losing healthy green leaves It could be one of the following issues.

  • Shock: Shock is the primary reason behind leaf loss. When you subject your plants to abruptly changes in conditions such as the temperature and light, humidity and even watering practices the plant may experience leaf loss.
  • Lower humidity: The dropping of leaves due to the low level of humidity can be a natural reaction because the ZZ plant tries to preserve its moisture by shedding leaves in order to reduce transpiration.
  • Pests: Pests such as spider mites, scale and mealybugs may cause leaf loss when you don’t treat your Zanzibar plant.

Black Spots On The Stems And Leaves

Zanzibar plants may suffer from discoloration and black spots on their leaves and stems. You may initially see hints of yellow appearing at the edges or tips of the leaves that later transform into black spots. Additionally some of the areas of black have an outline of yellow.

If your plant is has black spots Here’s the reason:

  • Infections caused by fungal organisms: The main reason for the large black spots is an infection caused by fungal bacteria. Fungal diseases are a result of excessive watering since they thrive in humid environments. So, it is important to make sure that your leaves don’t remain too moist to stop the growth of fungus.
  • Damage from pests: Some of the most frequent pests that create dark spots to your ZZ plant’s stems and foliage are scale, aphids, mealybugsand spider mites.
  • Black spots in your ZZ plant could be the plant’s last cry to get help if you’re excessively watering it. The damage from watering too much initially soaks into the roots before spreading upwards into the leaves.

Bending Stems

Ailments and other unsuitable conditions could make the ZZ machine to look fragile and spindly.

Here’s the reason your Zanzibar plant has bent stems:

  • Overwatering A: The ZZ doesn’t require regular watering. If you overwater your houseplant it causes damage to the roots, which prevents the plant from getting oxygen. The stems begin to lean and drop and causing the plant to collapse.
  • The Zanzibar plant may suffer similar symptoms due to a deficiency of water. The leaves will shrink and shed its stems, while the plant’s leaves or stems will fall.
  • Trauma: If your plant is traumatized the plant may begin to lean and then tip due to stress.

Wrinkled Bulbs Or Rhizomes

If you are repotting the ZZ plants, it might observe wrinkled bulbs, or even rhizomes near the base of the plant. These bulbs are vital to store water and nutrients to nourish the plant and aid in its growth.

The two main causes of wrinkled bulbs and rhizomes is:

  • Overwatering: If you are able to overwater your ZZ plant bulbs, they can show from wrinkles and black spots when they get drowned.
  • Submerging: Watering too much on the Zanzibar plant may cause the bulbs or rhizomes to dry out and get wrinkled.

Slow Or Poor Growth

Poor growth and slow growth could be a sign of the ZZ plants isn’t content with its surroundings. If you don’t see the growth of your plant or new stems appearing in the spring it’s a good idea to get started early before the time is too far.

Before we get into the root causes of slow growth, we would like to remind you that the ZZ plant goes into dormancy in the winter months. If you think the possibility that the plant is expanding due to its death there are two typical causes:

  • Insufficient light exposure: ZZ plant thrives in direct light that is bright. In essence, if the plant doesn’t receive sufficient light, it will not photosynthesis properly enough to generate energy that can be used to develop.
  • The soil that is deficient in nutrients: A houseplant is able to only use the soil that is in its pot. If the soil is deficient in nutrients or depleted it will not develop effectively.

Root rot

Root Rot is a serious and even fatal problem that doesn’t announce its presence when it is first noticed. It can therefore be difficult to identify since it is a problem that occurs beneath the surface of soil. But, there are some indicators to look out for. smelly soil, drooping stems and mushy roots.

The following causes can trigger root rot:

  • Overwatering: This is the most difficult issue of all. The Zanzibar plant requires oxygen to thrive, which makes waterlogged soil an issue. The roots get drowned and then rot in the excess water , and die.
  • Poor soil Unsuitable soil: The ZZ plant may be prone to waterlogging if you do not have a well-draining soil. The combination of poor soil and excessive watering can be detrimental for the ZZ plant since the roots are exposed to excessive water exposure.
  • Insufficient drainage holes: When your ZZ plant is in a pot that has poor drainage, then the excess water will not drain properly leading to root rot and eventually killing the plant.
  • Fungal infections: The fungus thrives in moist conditions, particularly in soils that are flooded. The fungal fungus can cause root rot , and cause death to ZZ plants. ZZ plant.

Frequently Asked Questions About ZZ Plant

Let’s address a few questions to make sure we’ve covered all of your concerns.

Why Are My ZZ Plant Leaves Turning Yellow?

If you notice yellowing foliage It is usually a sign of the frequency of your watering. Change the frequency and timing of when you water your ZZ plant to repair the damage.

What Does Root Rot Look Like On A ZZ Plant?

Root rot may manifest in a variety of ways on the ZZ plant, such as the smelly, mushy roots musty soil, roots that are discolored (gray or even black) and drooping stems.

Does A ZZ Plant Need High Humidity?

ZZ plants are typically extremely robust. They do well in a variety of humidity levels , but they prefer humidity levels that are between 40 and 50%..

How To Get Rid Of Mealybugs On A ZZ Plant?

Mealybugs appear as a white powdery substance on ZZ plant. They are, however, vulnerable to the majority of insecticides, insecticidal soaps oils for horticulture (like Neem oil) alcohol wipes or systemsic pesticides.

The first step is to clean off the substance that looks like cotton using the q-tip and rubbing alcohol. After that spray the plant with insecticidal soap or oil.

Tips To Keep Your ZZ Plant Healthy

Take these steps to keep get your “tough as nails” ZZ plant to ensure it is healthy and flourishing:

  • Make sure to keep your ZZ plant in indirect, bright light. Also, beware of low temperatures because the Zanzibar plant is prone to becoming excessively swollen. However, it is important to avoid direct sunlight to avoid scorched leaves.
  • Make sure you are sure that your ZZ plant is equipped with a standard well-draining potting mix with perlite, a few pieces and sand for drainage.
  • Avoid using clay soil as it could cause soggy conditions.
  • Make sure you plant your plant into a pot with drainage holes that are large enough.
  • It is better to submerge the ZZ plant rather than overwater it. Try to keep a steady water flow by soaking the plant’s water until the water seeps into the drainage holes, and then leaves its mark until soil has dried out completely.
  • Beware of water that is not of high-quality and has chlorine, salts, and fluorine.
  • Try to put your Zanzibar plants in a humid area of your home, such as the bathroom. You can also boost the humidity by purchasing an air humidifier or placing the plant on the top of a tray for water.
  • Although ZZ is a ZZ plant doesn’t require regular fertilization It is recommended that you apply an appropriate fertilizer each four weeks to provide the necessary nutrients throughout the growing season.
  • Plant the plants every two to three years to renew the soil.
  • Cut off the affected areas in the plants (roots stems, leaves, as well as leaves).
  • If your ZZ plant is suffering from root rot, you should consider the possibility of repotting it in new soil to stop fungal and bacterial diseases from spreading.


Although ZZ plants are typically as robust as nails, it isn’t invincible to negligence. However excessive amounts in a positive thing could cause harm.

Therefore, you should be watching your plants in the house for signs that they’re suffering or is dying. There are a variety of ways to revive and treat your plant, however it’s important to first know how to recognize the symptoms and the causes of the dying Zanzibar plant prior to being able to decide on the best strategy for your situation.

Best of Luck with the new ZZ plant!



Went from a bad gardener to a half-decent one over 10+ years. Super happy to share my tips and tricks with you :)