Large leaved colocasias/alocasias/xanthosomas


Dick Mansell has posted 3 pictures (rather large - about 70K each, so be
ready for longer download times if you look) on the Aroid ID Center - they
are numbers 132a, 132b, and 132c. You can reach it via the IAS we page at or directly at

I have at least a couple of questions - first as to its identity. The
Tulsa Parks department grows this in several outdoor plantings during the
summer, and they know it as Colocasia 'Fontanesii'. Looking at Tony
Avent's catalog, he lists C. fontanesii as having large green heart shaped
leaves with a black cast. The leaves of this Tulsa plant I'd have said
were more sagittate than cordate, to wax formal about it. 

To further confuse the issue, there is a plant also in Tony's 1997 catalog
listed as Colocasia 'Burgandy Stem' which he says was formerly mistakenly
listed as C. fontanesii. This plant sends out long "wild looking" runners.
I have a taro which also does this, and Dick Mansell has referred to a
"cranberry taro" which exhibits this behavior. Are they all the same?

I also have a plant which has typical Colocasia esculenta looking leaves
when they first emerge, perhaps a bit darkish in color, but which turn
almost pure matte black within a day or so. Anything like the "Black
Magic" or "Voodoo" cultivar we discussed a few weeks back?

I'm interested in getting some concensus on all these, and thought perhaps
I would upload a few more pictures to Dick and ask those more knowledgable
than I to comment. Any comments on this first set?


-- Steve Marak

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