Re: Aroids in the garden

Krzysztof Kozminski writes:
> I am not too worried about the Amorphophallus,
 > > Arisaemas, or Pinellias, but I do worry a bit about the Alocasia. Should I
 > > keep it potted and winter it over inside before planting or would I have
 > > better luck putting it into the groud? The plant is supposed to be a good
 > > size already, and I think I could have it pretty well established before
 > > the first frost, but I am really stretching the limits of the hardiness of
 > > this plant as it is, what does everyone else think I should do?
 > I'overwinter it indoors, definitely. By next spring it should be 3-4 ft tall,
 > and then if you get enough humidity outdoors, you can expect it getting to
 > maybe 8 ft tall, with 4-5ft leaves.
 > Check out
 > or for a possible outcome - I think well worth an inconvenience of having it
 > indoors. In zone 6, it is not likely that you'll get enough growing season to
 > get it to the full size without a big head start indoors...
My experience with Colocasia in zone 7b has been that the plant dies back
and during warm winter (an oleander survival winter, such as the last two)
makes a strong comeback--a single tuber has colonized
a 3'x3' area now.  In cold (10-20 F) winters, it survives, but most often the 
largest tuber has turned to mush, though lots of small side plants spring up 
from it.  I've only had A. macrorrhizos one winter, and I decided to bring it 
into the cellar after the first frost had nipped it back.  The light there is
weak--geraniums survive but don't flower--and it didn't do a thing overwinter.
It went back out in April.  It is now about the size it was when the frost 
got it last year--noticeable but nothing like Krzysztof's!  How big is the pot
yours is in Krzystof?  Other Alocasias do as Julius suggested--they go out 
in pot then after a scrubbing the pot comes back in with the orchids in the 
fall.  I'll probably pot up the macrorrhizos this fall and leave it in pot.

Clear skies,
|Al Wootten, Slacktide, Sturgeon Creek at the Rappahannock|
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