Sunday, March 1, 2009

Elephant's Ear propagation

We have an Elephant's Ear in the corner of our garden under a palm tree. It appeared by accident, but I think it's no coincidence as the Elephant Ear likes compost (according to this useful guide to 'General Aroid Care'), and that's where we put a lot of the larger waste that we can't fit in the compost bins.
elephant's ear and palm tree

The official name is Alocasia macrorrhizos, and another name is Giant Taro.
Elephant's Ear

As you can see, it spreads easily too - it is known as a hardy plant that can also survive in less favourable environments, and works as a house plant too.
young elephant's ear plants


It spreads by stolons that form corms - here you can see the roots, or stolons I'm not sure, coming out of the stem.
elephant;s ear stolon









13 comments:

garden girl said...

Oh I wish I could keep mine outside all year like that!

My Elephants Ears are overwintering in the basement under a sodium grow light along with the rest of my tender plants. I tried the EE's in a sunny window, but they dripped sap all over the hardwood floors, so they are banished to the basement for the duration of winter!

julian said...

Yes that is a nice thing about the climate here - on the other hand, weeds never stop growing either! :)

Kanak Hagjer said...

One of the easiest things to grow, really. But it does look attractive.

julian said...

Because it gets so big, we find it useful to act as a screen on the fence, which is just near a main road.

Sunita said...

I like the way it looks backlit like that. And the leaf makes such a nice contrast againt the feathery leaves of the palm. Unintentional maybe, but very effective!

julian said...

Unintentional in effect, but serendipitous :)

Bangchik and Kakdah said...

hi... a very nice touch on compost..

julian said...

Thanks for dropping by :)

HappySurfer said...

You know I've always thought these are yam plants and that they bear yams that can be eaten. I must be mistaking them for the real yam plants. hmm..

julian said...

I'm pretty sure there's nothing edible there!

Spencer Woodard said...

Elephant ear makes a fantastic sheet mulch. You can cut back completely and it begins to grow back almost instantly. I have always been under the impression that the tuber are inedible. But it seems like there must be a way to prepare them for consumption.

julian said...

Apparently it is possible to eat the tuber, but it takes a lot of preparation and is not commonly done at all - check these out:

Tung Kin Foong’s Blog
International Aroid Society
'Taro' is eaten, but it's a very different variety or something

Anonymous said...

Tubers(the edible part) in the Caribbean are called malanga .Softened and with milk and butter they are eaten to soothe the stomach. Not sure if your varuety is the one sold in stores as edible. It's like a pastier potato.