Please Help with EE information

sunny43(Z 6 Pa.)March 15, 2005

I've been researching EE from library books and the internet. I've found several contradictions. After weeding though them, I've come up with the information below. For those who know, can you please make any corrections you may deem necessary. This is for the coastal area of Texas zone 9. Thank you.

Elephant Ears are not a scientific name but one we comely use. There are three genera, from the family of Araceae, that are the most commonly planted Elephant Ears. They are Alocasia, Colocasia, and Xanthosoma. There are many species within each genus. Before you grow Elephant Ears, you need to research the species you plan on growing. Some can take more sun and moisture than others can. Other species can grow outdoors as far north as zone 7 as oppose to certain species that grow only in tropical climates outdoors. The following information is only a general guideline. There is a wide assortment of species in each genus of Elephant Ears below.

Alocasia, in most cases has shiny, erect, upward pointing leaves with heavily raised veins. The leaves can be divided or undivided. Grown outdoors in a rich well drain moist soil in partial shade. You can find Alocasia usually at damp areas by streams and marshes. You have some giants in the family that can grow over 96" tall.

Colocasia is the Elephant Ear most widely grown in our area. The leaves have a tendency to flop down and usually have a matte finish. The leaves on the Colocasia are always undivided. You can grow this plant in 12" of water so they would be good for your pond. If planted outdoors grow in fertile, humus rich, slightly acidic, moist or wet soil. When it is dormant, try to keep it on the drier side. Colocasia are very heavy feeders. Depending on the species, you can grow Colocasia in sun or part shade.

Xanthosoma leaf on the underside of it leaves is ribbed and the top is smooth. On the Xanthosoma, the leaf stem attaches at the notched edge of the leaf not like the Alocasia and Colocasia, which attaches away from the edge of the leaf. They are grown for their eatable tuber and leaves. Stems are eatable on some species. Grown outdoors in a rich fertile, well drain soil in partial shade. Avoid saturation. Grow in a slightly acidic soil. Feed every 2 or 3 weeks. Xanthosoma includes some of your largest species.

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I have found that Colocasia in our area grow better in moist, but not wet soil. I, too, have read about the ability to grow them under a foot of water, but all those planted in wet soil rotted. In moist and damp soil, they are fine, though.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2005 at 10:19AM
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hen11(z7 Eng UK)

i wouldn't agree that xanthosoma has the largest of the species, alocasia robusta and borneo-giant are definately the largest i've seen:

Here is a link that might be useful: A.robusta

    Bookmark   March 18, 2005 at 6:56PM
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I'm in Galveston. I've found that most except our native ee, they are growing behind the Ford company on Broadway in the ponds back there, do much better in partial shade. The purple stem that I uh, obtained, from Moody Gardens does OK with some afternoon sun but not all day sun. Tally Ho!

    Bookmark   July 10, 2005 at 6:53PM
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