Elephant ears, a popular member of the Caladium family, are well known for their big leaves that resemble the ear's of an elephant. The leaves can be green, burgundy or variegated white and shades of green, extending color and adding textural depth from summer into fall. The plants are easy to grow in both sun and shade. Elephant ear plants grow from tuberous bulbs, which can be saved and grown for many years with proper care.
Cut the elephant ear plant leaves back in the fall, after they have died back. Leaves should be cut back to the ground.
Use a hand spade to dig up the bulbs if you live in an area . Use care so you do not nick or damage the tubers.
Shake off excess soil. Wipe bulbs clean with a cloth or paper towel. Do not wash them in water.
Store bulbs in paper bag with several handfuls of peat moss to keep them from drying out. Label the bag with name of bulb and close bag. Store in a cool, dark area until spring. University of Illinois Extension Specialist advises against storing the bulbs in an unheated garage or basement, as they may be damaged if temperatures dip below 60 degrees.
Cover with mulch in the South. Elephant ear bulbs can remain in the ground during winter months in warm-weather areas, says bulb retailer Van Bourgondien, but should be covered with a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch to protect bulbs from occasional cold snaps.