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Known as Korokio, zig-zag plant or the wire netting bush, Corokia cotoneaster, originates from New Zealand but is a beautiful, visually interesting addition to indoor and outdoor gardens world-wide. The plant gets its common name from the zig-zagging pattern of the branches that grow delicate obovate leaves.
C. cotoneaster are evergreen shrubs and one of the hardiest in the Cotoneaster family, but young plants don’t like very cold winters. In the spring, they bloom with delicate star-shaped flowers.
This versatile shrub can be grown both indoors and outdoors and even kept as a bonsai. They deal well with heavy pruning to maintain a small size or can be left to grow up to 8 feet tall.
Although the care for these plants may seem straight forward, they can be very finnicky, so we don't recommend them for beginner houseplant enthusiasts.
Korokio prefer to be kept in full sun or partial shade. If you’re keeping your plant indoors, you’ll need to have a window that gets bright sun all throughout the day.
These plants don’t like having soggy roots, so be sure that your pot contains a well-draining soil that is allowed to dry well in the top layer between waterings. Wire netting bushes can be sensitive to excessive drought so you'll need to keep a close eye on it during the warmest months. In winter, the cold dry air can also cause damage.
If you have drafty windows or an air conditioner nearby, be sure to keep this plant well clear of them. They hate cold drafts and very dry air.
The genus Corokia is unique to New Zealand with its name being derived from the indigenous Māori name: korokio. Corokia cotoneaster has the widest range of these plants and has been adapted well as a houseplant. The most common cultivar is ‘Little Prince’ which stays smaller in size and has signature gray, downy hairs on new growth.
Scientists theorize that the zig-zagging shape of the branches serves to protect the leaves from the sun in the winter when it can be quite intense.