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When Do Elephant Ear Plants Flower?

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Elephant ear plants, known as Colocasia and Alocasia, lend an exotic appeal to landscapes and indoor spaces. The large flapping leaves are showier than the flowers.

Leaves

Elephant ear plants fill up vertical space in the garden with large leaves shaped like an arrow. Leaves come in shades of green and purple.

Flowers

The elephant ear plant rarely flowers, according to the University of Florida. When flowers are produced, green-yellow spathes appear in summer. The flower stem is shorter than the leaf stalk and is usually overshadowed by the showy leaves.

Alocasia and Colocasia

One way to differentiate plants from Alocasia and Colocasia genera is by their fruit. Species of Alocasia produce fruits that are orange or red and have no scent. Fruits of Colocasia are not brightly colored but have a strong odor.

Garden Care

Elephant ear plants do not tolerate drought or salinity. Colocasia species prefer wetter conditions than species of Alocasia, and are commonly planted near water gardens. The rhizome of Alocasia is prone to rot if conditions are too moist.

Species Of Elephant Ear Plants

The Alocasia species of elephant ear comes in many varieties with different sizes and colors. Keep the temperature between 60 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit and reduce the amount of water given. Caladium varieties do well in U.S. Department of Agriculture zones 8 through 11. The green and purple leaves are arrow-shaped and measure 8 to 12 inches. Plant caladiums in acidic and clay, sandy, or loamy soil. Check regularly for mealy bugs, slugs, snails, caterpillars and grasshoppers, although these pests are not considered a serious threat. More than 200 varieties of this species exist, with popular cultivar choices such as “Globulifera,” “Trinidad,” “Sacremento,” “Fontanesia” and “Black Magic.” They grow well in USDA zones 8 to 11 and are the only species with peltate leaves. The colocasia species are wetland plants, making them suitable as container plants around edges of pools and water surfaces, but do not plant them near water sources outside of containers because colocasia species tend to spread aggressively.

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