Colocasia esculenta is also known by the common names; taro and elephant ear.
Elephant ear plants have been used in cultivation for many thousands of years are likely to be native to South-East Asia. They are widely used in tropical plantings due to their stunning big bold leaves that are iconically jungle in effect. Colocasia esculenta are herbaceous perennials that grow at a tremendous rate through the growing season, constantly sending out new foliage creating an impressive tropical display.
The most important thing to know when growing colocasia esculenta is that they love to be spoilt with water and nutrients, keep the colocasia esculenta well-watered and feed plenty. In simple terms the more water and food - the bigger the Colocasia.
Colocasias grow very well as a marginal plant around ponds and water features, and are perfectly happy grown in shallow water. The elephants ear will be happy in full sun but will tolerate fairly shady situations too. For the very best effect plant out these tropical jungle plants in clumps of three to create a monster tropical display.
The Colocasia esculenta is a perfect choice for creating a tropical planting scheme and works wonderfully with other jungle plants such as the Ginger Lilly (Hedychium coronarium) or with the contrasting Taro Plant (Colocasia esculenta 'Black Magic'). For a foliage plant in tropical planting areas or for a touch of the tropical around ponds and water features few are more effective than the colocasia esculenta.
Colocasia esculenta will die back around the time of the first frosts. At this time the plant can be cut back and the bulbs lifted and stored dry for winter. Or if the soil is well-drained the colocasia can be cut down and mulched over, which should adequately protect the bulb for winter. Alternatively pot them up prior to the weather turning cold and over-winter them indoors as an indoor plant.
Fertilizer is essential for Colocasia esculenta to get the very best from the plant, as is the case with most jungle plants. Click on Foliar Feed for our own formulated fertilizer, perfect for encouraging healthy strong foliage.
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