Colocasia esculenta ... worth digging up for winter?

nokiOctober 28, 2007

Planted a large Colocasia esculenta bulb in the ground, it came up in June and it grew well and large (for Ohio, far as i know), with leaves going up over 5 feet. It's about as big as I ever see in the area, got a lot of sun.

Could I dig up the ovoid tuber and would it grow at least as large next year? When would I dig it up? Cut off all the roots and stems? We are close to having a freeze. Do you store it in a pot with soil in a cool but not freezing place to overwinter?

Is it really worth digging up thou? Will it grow as large or larger? If it won't grow as large, I just won't bother and I'll buy a new one next year

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araceaelover

I used to dig up mine every year. Last year I left some in the ground in a sheltered spot next to the house with a southern exposure.

They overwintered well.

in 5B I don't know if they will make it, you could try digging all up and then placing one or two tubers back in the hole before you fill it in.

rinse all of the soil off of them and prune the roots and the dead leaves off of them. and let them air dry in a shady place until they are dry.

Store the tubers inside in a cool dry and dark place.

I put mine in a paper bag and check them every 2 to 4 weeks for rot and excessive drying.

Dust them with a little cinnamon powder before placing in the bag.

If they are drying out, sprinkle with a little water.

They usually put off some babies, and the tuber's do get bigger.

Ideally you should let the leaves die naturally because as they die off the nutrients stored in the leaves go back into the tuber to make it bigger.

I hope this helps.

John

    Bookmark   October 28, 2007 at 6:14PM
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noki

Thanks! I'll try digging it up after the leaves turn brown from frost. Should give it a try at least once.

Just wondered if the plant got enough energy in a non-tropical zone to fuel next years growth to become bigger. I'll guess I will have multiple plants to play with.

    Bookmark   October 28, 2007 at 11:57PM
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bihai(zone 9)

I'd give it a try, definitely, but it your ground freezes, I would expect the root system to turn to mush.

Colocasias left intact here just keep on making more little underground forays into new territory even if the topgrowth is frozen back, but our ground doesn't freeze, and we don't get snow or ice.

But, you never know til you try.

    Bookmark   October 29, 2007 at 9:07PM
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