Ask a Question forum→ZZ Plant new growth browning

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Durham, North Carolina
dyllouwil
Jun 4, 2020 7:57 AM CST
I went away for the week and came back and the new growth on this ZZ has developed (or was possibly hiding the entire time) this brown spot. Has anyone seen anything like this before? Any thoughts and whats going on here?

Thanks everyone.





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[Last edited by dyllouwil - Jun 4, 2020 8:00 AM (+)]
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Name: one-eye-luke US.Vet.
Texas (Zone 8a)
Quitter's never Win
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oneeyeluke
Jun 4, 2020 9:21 AM CST
It looks like you may be keeping the soil too wet. Can you post a photo of the plant in the soil?
NOT A EXPERT! Just a grow worm! I never met a plant I didn’t love.✌
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Image
WillC
Jun 4, 2020 9:22 AM CST
I have seen it many times. It is a root-related problem caused by repotting damage or either under or overwatering.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
Durham, North Carolina
dyllouwil
Jun 4, 2020 12:36 PM CST
WillC said:I have seen it many times. It is a root-related problem caused by repotting damage or either under or overwatering.


Thank you Will! I was worried that might be the case. I think I have been over watering, is this root rot and/or life threatening?
Durham, North Carolina
dyllouwil
Jun 4, 2020 12:38 PM CST
oneeyeluke said:It looks like you may be keeping the soil too wet. Can you post a photo of the plant in the soil?


I couldn't get a good photo but I think you are right. Over watering. Have you ever dealt with this before with a ZZ? I'll reduce watering starting today but wondering if there's any long term impacts on the plant. My fiddle lead got root rot and almost died...
Name: one-eye-luke US.Vet.
Texas (Zone 8a)
Quitter's never Win
Hummingbirder Birds Organic Gardener Dog Lover Cat Lover
oneeyeluke
Jun 4, 2020 12:50 PM CST
Every time you think it's time to water, wait 4 extra days before you do, and that should help.
NOT A EXPERT! Just a grow worm! I never met a plant I didn’t love.✌
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Image
WillC
Jun 4, 2020 1:02 PM CST
If that is the first discolored leaf you have seen, then any serious root damage is unlikely. Root suffocation occurs not from a single watering but from not letting the soil dry ut sufficiently over an extended period of time.

Is your ZZ still in its nursery pot?

How do you decide when to water it?

Fiddle-leafed Figs are very hard to overwater and root rot is rare, so I wonder if that is why yours has struggled.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care
Durham, North Carolina
dyllouwil
Jun 5, 2020 9:03 AM CST
oneeyeluke said:Every time you think it's time to water, wait 4 extra days before you do, and that should help.


Helpful rule of thumb! Will do, thank you.
Durham, North Carolina
dyllouwil
Jun 5, 2020 9:07 AM CST
WillC said:If that is the first discolored leaf you have seen, then any serious root damage is unlikely. Root suffocation occurs not from a single watering but from not letting the soil dry ut sufficiently over an extended period of time.

Is your ZZ still in its nursery pot?

How do you decide when to water it?

Fiddle-leafed Figs are very hard to overwater and root rot is rare, so I wonder if that is why yours has struggled.


That is good to know as this is the first discoloration I have seen. I would say that I may not have let the soil dry out for an extended period of time. I moved it to terra cotta as soon as I got it. I have been watering it when the top inch of the soil is dry though I am going to increase the time between waterings now!

With regard to FLF and root rot- this brings me to a more general question about house plant research online. I find such conflicting information it is sometimes hard to know what is evidence-based. I find myself running trial and error on my plants which I'd rather not do. All this to say, it is nice to actually be in communication with someone with experience and I wonder- what resources/books do you recommend, Will? Thanks so much for your help here!
Name: Will Creed
NYC
Prof. plant consultant & educator
Image
WillC
Jun 5, 2020 2:56 PM CST
It is also quite easy to let the soil get too dry, as well. Without seeing how it is potted and not knowing if you removed some of the original soil or added new soil on top makes it hard to guide you with proper watering.

Thanks for the compliment. Most of my information is experiential and based on 35 years of caring for plants exclusively in homes and offices. It contradicts much of the conventional wisdom online and elsewhere that is either anecdotal or based on recommendations from greenhouse growers who have plants growing in ideal greenhouse conditions. Care adjustments have to be made for each unique indoor environment. Good sources of information are hard to find, but this site is a good start.
Will Creed
Horticultural Help, NYC
www.HorticulturalHelp.com
Contact me directly at [email protected]
I now have a book available on indoor plant care

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