overwintering young colos

mantorvillain(z4bMN Dodge)January 19, 2013

I got several new colo varieties last spring and were of course quite small. They did pretty well till fall and I repotted them into 2 gal containers with the intention of keeping them going under lights as I wasn't sure they had made enough growth to let them go dormant as I do my big mature plants.
Well, they've slowly dwindled and are now either dead or dormant (one lonly leaf on an Elena)and I'm wondering my best strategy:
1. Just put the pots in the cooler area of my old basement
2. Bring them up into a window and keep them moist in hopes they'll wake up vs survive

Appreciate your experienced input.

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grabmebymyhandle(6 Kentucky)

heat is what you need, not water, watering dormant plants is a death sentence, get a heating pad for em or build a tent and heat it to 90-100. dont let em get too dry but certainly not wet either.

    Bookmark   January 20, 2013 at 9:55PM
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eclayne(Z6a, MA)

I agree with grab, again.

One mistake I've made is potting into too large a pot where the soil stays too wet. Some grow roots so fast it doesn't matter, others are much slower.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2013 at 12:28PM
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grabmebymyhandle(6 Kentucky)

yea colocasia are funny i under pot most all my alcasias for winter, a few stay in their big pots and alot get poped outta the ground and stored dry, as long as i dont overwater them they do just fine...

colocasia rot, and dry rot under seemingly the same conditions, underpotting helps less with them, they just do all manner of strange things in winter, more tolerant of adverse conditions, yet more likly to succumb to them as well. Luckily most colo's vegativly reproduce like crazy so i just buy em early in summer and plant outside, by the time i dig em in the fall i have enough to kill a few over the winter... no ideal but it works...I prefer to keep them going in winter, if only a leaf atleast i can monitor health better...

    Bookmark   February 5, 2013 at 7:44AM
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aachenelf z5 Mpls

I noticed you're in MN too which is where I am. Yes, this is the season to start these things going again. I just started this week.

Every fall I haul all my big pots into a sunny yet unheated cold room. That's where my colocasia spend the winter. They look like absolute crap right now, but that's normal. In my cold conditions I've found the drier I keep them the better, but it's still kind of a balancing act between too dry and too wet. This winter seems to have gone well.

I would suggest dumping out the pots and sifting through to see what is living material and what is definitely dead. Anything still hard or at least partially hard has possibilities. Then repot the living stuff into as small of pots as possible using barely moist potting medium. Be careful of overwatering at this point. Heat is the most important thing you can do for them right now to get them growing. Once growing, more water. I start 60-70 new plants each winter. Here's a photo of some I repotted just a couple of days ago. Again, they still look like crap, but these will do just fine by summer.


    Bookmark   February 15, 2013 at 1:48PM
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grabmebymyhandle(6 Kentucky)

I would say fine...you will have monsters by july!

i got mine going about a month ago, its time to bump em all up to 1 gallons of better...

I want monsters in may!

    Bookmark   February 23, 2013 at 5:21AM
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