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Re: Elephant Ears

Sue, depends on the cultivar as to ultimate size, but considering the
size of most tubers for sale, any size container that fits it with
some space left over will work.  Bigger is a tad better as most of
them appreciate moist soil.  I'd probably start with min. 2 gal.
nursery container size.  

I have one Colocasia - don't know the species as it was given me by a
friend who got her original tuber at the grocery store.  It's now
huge and I had to split it up when I dug it last fall.  Lived for
several years in a 7 gal. nursery container then I started planting
it in a hole I'd dug - called it the mud hole as it was lower than
surrounding grade so it would hold water - this particular plant will
grow in standing water.  Had a heck of a time digging it up last
fall; hence the split as I didn't have a pot big enough for it.

The size of growth will depend on the species and container - in a
smaller container, the leaves won't get as big (on the big leaf
forms) as they will in the ground.  

For several years, I just semi buried the container and all in a
hole, mainly to help keep the soil in the pot moist and even so, I
water every day in summer.

They will grow in about any soil as long as it's moist but prefer
organic rich soil....good dollop of manure and appreciate feeding -
again depending on the species. I'd say clay based rather than sandy
based, but that may be because mine do fine in clay based soil which
does hold water better than sand.  Elephant ears can be Colocasia,
Alocasia or Xanthosoma - generally; there are some others that also
get this common name.  Of these 3, Alocasia puts up with a drier soil
and doesn't actually like to grow in standing water and actually
prefers a bit of shade.  Most Colocasia prefer swampy type

All these plants love heat so do not put them outside until your
nights are continually above 60F.  Bring them in when nights start
dropping into the 50s.  In your area, I'd give full sun....in mine
they do well in part shade, but sun and heat and water are what they

If you're not inclined to dig stuff up in fall, best keep it in a

Marge Talt, zone 7 Maryland
Shadyside Garden Designs

> From: Taborri <taborri@rochester.rr.com>
> I had purchased a couple large Elephant Ears bulbs/tubers a few
years ago and
> planted them.  They grew quite nicely but of course the tuber died
in the
> winter, though I had read to lift the bulb out for winter.  I'm
lazy.  <shrug>
> This year I thought I would plant them in planters.  How large must
> planter be?  What about soil?  Other tips?  Thanks!

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