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Re: Alocasia culture

On Sat, 20 Nov 1999, Jean Halverson wrote:

> Neither had a name tag but the nursery worker said one was 'African
> Mask.'

Alocasia x. amazonica, most likely.  Possibly A. "Green Velvet" (cultivar
of A.micholitziana).

>  The other has no name.  The leaves are a dark olive green with
> darker veins and a narrow, dark edge.  The underside is burgundy and the
> leaf edge has a slight wave to it.  The leaves feel quite thick and look
> velvety.  I really like the subtle colors on it.

Alocasia "Black velvet", most likely.

Check, out my page: http://u1.netgate.net/~kk/Araceae/Alocasia/index.html;
you might be able to identify your species by comparing them with mine.

> Should I encourage these to go dormant?  If so, how?  Both pots had a
> plant that looked like they could be separated so a  sister and I shared
> them.  'African Mask' doesn't look like anything happened, the other
> wasn't happy (I may have gotten the offset plant) but is now
> recovering.  Can I keep them growing now, put them outdoors when the
> weather warms up (probably late June here in Zone 5a) and let them go
> dormant next fall?

They go dormant only if stressed by drought, and sometimes don't come back
- I would avoid dormancy. Keep evenly moist, don't overwater.  "Black
velvet" likes humidity and low light (mine starte doing OK only after I
got discouraged by meager performance and put it in the area used as a
transition to the compost bin: under the table in my greenhouse - the
greenhouse is under 60% shade cloth in San Jose, CA).

"Microsoft is to software what McDonalds is to gourmet cooking"

Krzysztof Kozminski

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