overwintering a few plants

kbmtholly(7b/NC)August 9, 2004

I'm new to overwintering plants and really in need of some advice. I have some elephant ears. Alocasia, and Colocasia. I see the typical green Colocasia year after year, so I know it's somewhat hardy here. I also have a couple diffrent ones like black magic, nancy's revenge, and rhubarb. I'm pretty sure these are only marginaly hardy here, if at all. So I would like to leave some in the ground, and keep some overwintered just in case. I already have some started in containers. I'm pretty sure they will go dormant in the house, so should I keep them under my house? Should they be kept moist?

I also have alocasia porto dora, and ?macrohizza?. Will these make it as "houseplants" through the winter. I also have some Hedichium ginger that I would like to continue growing this winter. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

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randit(z8 southern NM)

I would think that many of these plants would overwinter in your clime???.. I have overwintered a number of less hardy Alocasias, colocasias in the garage. We pull the pots into the center of the garage, and basically, let them just go completely dry. I would be careful NOT to overwater the pots...you may cause rot. Left outside, my macrorhizza and portadora have come through with a small amount injury, from one 11 degree spell we had a couple years ago (these are protected,and dry, under Oaks).

    Bookmark   August 14, 2004 at 5:41PM
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I agree with Randy T that most if not all would be hardy for you. I live just barely in 8A and grow most of these plants in containers so they really have harsher conditions than if in ground. I tuck them under eaves and keep barely moist. I bring in Colocasia Black Magic to enjoy inside.

I've learned to rely on Tony Avent at Plant Delights Nursery in Raleigh NC since many of my plants came from there... he often tells how long something has been growing at nursery. You can check his recommendations online...most of your plants (except maybe Rhubarb) I think are listed. Good luck. josh

Here is a link that might be useful: Plant Delights

    Bookmark   August 17, 2004 at 9:11AM
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I don't yet have experience with these but in our climite, often the problem with tubers or bulbs in winter, are prolonged wet conditions that can occur in lower lying or heavy soil. But, sounds like these guys like water so that may not be an issue. I've wondered if mulching for cover also contributes to wet conditions for those things that will rot, so is there a mulch or method thats preferred?

    Bookmark   August 17, 2004 at 12:24PM
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Have macrorrhiza and black magic and overwintered it on my windowsill here in Zone 5a. If your windows freeze be sure to keep the leaves of the black m. off the glass or they will look BAD. I would think yours might do ok outside there. If yours is like mine you could cut a pup for the house and keep the rest in the ground and find out. You're safe with one ea. way. :)

I also have portodora and got it in early spring. It hardly grew on the window sill and then after frost I put it out where it has been an extremely slow grower as well.

This fall I'm doing the houseplant thing and basement cold storage-if I have a pup I'm doing both.

Karen (cheerpeople)

    Bookmark   September 16, 2004 at 10:39AM
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I also have portodora which grew VERY slowly this year. Not much at all. I gave them plenty of water, but I don't think it had enough sun. I have just about started everything in pots that I don't want to lose. I have heard a lot of conflicting reports on the diffrent types of colocasia. I'm leaving alot of them outside, and taking the pups I've started in. I guess I will see. Thanks for the help.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2004 at 9:18PM
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