How to Care for Alocasia Cucullata
Alocasia cucullata is often called Buddha's Palm because its slender stems topped with heavy, heart-shaped leaves seem to be "waving" with every slight breeze. This tropical plant is a cultivar of the Alocasia group of plants, or elephant ear plants, known for their large leaves. Alocasia cucullata is one of the smaller varieties, making it an excellent choice for either outdoor planting or for container growth. This hardy, evergreen plant can even be grown as a houseplant.
Place your Alocasia cucullata in the proper location. Only grow this plant outdoors in the ground if you live in United States Department of Agriculture growing zones 8b through 11, as recommended by the University of Florida. In other locations, the plant can be grown in a container and brought indoors when cool weather arrives or grown entirely indoors.
Place the plant where it will be exposed to some sun and some shade. Morning sun followed by afternoon shade is best as the bright afternoon sunlight can fade the variegation on the plant's leaves.
Keep the soil moist and do not let this plant dry out. Alocasia cucullata thrives in moist, cool soil and cannot tolerate drought conditions, according to the University of Florida.
Protect outdoor plants from wind damage. There are no major insect pests or diseases that bother this hardy plant. Keep the temperatures consistently warm as freezing weather will kill this plant.
Choose a plant pot a couple of inches larger than the container the alocasia is growing in currently. Rinse with a mixture of one part bleach and nine parts water. Mix together potting soil with slow-release houseplant fertilizer. Place the root ball into the new container and adjust the soil under the roots so that the surface of the root ball is level. Cover the root ball with a thin layer of soil. Direct sunlight can burn the leaves and cause the plant to dry out quickly. If located indoors, then place the container on a drip tray. Let the water drain out of the pot. Do not let the plant stay in standing water.