Coontie (Zamia pumila)
Common Name Coontie
Latin Name Zamia pumila
Height 2 to 3 feet
Spread 2-4 feet
Salt Water Tolerance Low
Salt Wind Tolerance High
Drought Tolerance High
Soil Dry, thin, sandy soils
Sun Full Sun to light shade
Wildlife Attractant Atala butterfly
Native to Florida, the Coontie is mostly used as a ground cover and accent specimen along borders of landscapes. Its unique palm/fern like appearance coupled with its red fruit, make for an interesting addition. It is considered a hardy plant, tolerating drought and cold. It is easy to grow and adaptable to many environments.
We love to implement the Coontie into lots of our landscapes!
A unique looking ground cover, the Coontie stands at only 2-3 feet tall, and 2-4 feet wide. Its long leaves resemble a fern but are tough like a palm. The fruit grows from the base of the plant, is red to brown in color and resembles a cob of corn. The Coontie is one of a few cycad species left and can be considered a living fossil. Cycads have been found as far back as the Jurassic Period, which in turn, makes the Coontie a wonderful little peak back into history.
The Coontie is a larval host plant for the Atala butterfly.