how fast do elephant ears grow

After planting your Elephant Ears, have patience. The elephant ear grows either from a specialized bulb called a corm or from an underground stem, or rhizome, depending on the type. Elephant Ears needs room to grow. The tip on watering is to keep the roots moist - … Now fill, around 75% of this pot with any simple and lightweight soil mix, and then gently transfer the plant in it. Plant one inch deep in pots large enough to accommodate the bulbs, use a good quality potting soil. The plant needs an organically-rich soil for best and fastest growth, and adding some compost at planting can increase your soil's organic content while also enhancing its nutrients. To get an idea of your elephant ears' growth prospects, you first need to know the type of elephant ears with which you're dealing. Elephant ear plants grow from a swollen stem similar to a bulb but known as a corm. Whether you're growing elephant ears in pots indoors or mammoth elephant ears in containers outdoors, you can expect quick growth, but there's some variety to specific sprouting speeds. This plant grows quickly, with the amount of height added each year depending on the variety, but its growth rate also depends on the plant's receiving the right amount of light, moisture and soil nutrients. Plant in the spring when nighttime temperatures are above 50 °F (10 °C). Growing Elephant Ears Outdoors. It also grows fastest when given regular watering during spring and summer, and is a good choice for a moist spot near a pond or other water feature, although it won't grow well if planted in standing water. In cooler areas (zones 3-8) they are usually grown as annuals. (The bigger the bulb the deeper it goes.) Keep the soil barely moist but not wet. On the tail end, expect top growth in a maximum of eight weeks. Xanthosoma is a fast grower just like its brethren. The elephant ear plant will do well in full sun if you get the right species. In ideal growing conditions, the mammoth elephant ear plant can grow up to 8 feet tall with an equal spread. You can grow all three genera of elephant ears as annuals, but those hardy to colder temps can be kept through the winter season too. However, they will be smaller in size when grown as a seasonal plant. Just like Colocasia plants, well-watered Alocasia elephant ears will start to sprout in a period of about three to eight weeks whether they are planted indoors or out. But if you grow this plant outside in partial shade, it will thrive and grow to its full potential height. for the plant to first emerge. All types of plants can make good additions to a home garden, including those grown for foliage rather than flowers. In healthy conditions, expect this elephant ear to reach full maturity from a crom in about 14 to 20 weeks. Elephant ear plants are native to tropical Asia and derived their name from their huge, 2-foot-wide, 3-foot-long, heart-shaped leaves. The elephant's ear plant is terrific, lush, jungly bedding plant for growing outside over summer with other large-leaved plants like cannas and Trachycarpus fortunei. To speed up the process, you can start them inside and move them outdoors once it warms up. Elephant ears usually sprout three to eight weeks from planting. According to Better Homes and Gardens gardening expert, Roger Fox, elephant ears (Alocasia species) need adequate warmth and humidity to grow indoors as they’re native to tropical areas. Each leaf appears at the end of a straight, strong stem that's also thick and succulent. They are borne atop sturdy, succulent leaf stalks. Alocasia plants can quickly reach heights of about 1.5 to 3 feet, per the growers at Hortology. Elephant ears' species name, esculentia, is the same term that gives us the word "esculent," meaning edible. Do Alocasia Elephant Ears Have Seeds? A corm or rhizome should be planted about 2 to 4 inches deep, while a container-grown plant should be placed 1 to 2 inches deeper in garden soil than it was in its pot. At maturity, the Xanthosoma sagittifolium – the variety of Xanthosoma most commonly dubbed "tannia" or "elephant ear," hardy to USDA zones 8, 9 and 10 per the Missouri Botanical Garden – only reaches heights and spreads of about 2 to 4 feet, making it a more compact plant than the other elephant ear genera when grown in the U.S. They are herbaceous perennials in warm climates. Elephant ears usually sprout three to eight weeks from planting. If you see any brown leaves, cut them before they increase in number and make sure to water your plant regularly to prevent that from happening. Why are my elephant ears turning yellow? During winters, lower the water intake and trim your leaves every once in a while. Repotting - Léon & George’s Elephant’s Ears plants come in 10” or 12” grow pots and only need to be repotted every few years if you notice the roots outgrowing the pot, or to refresh the soil and give it new nutrients. Elephant ears typically like a sunny spot in the garden. Elephant ears grow well in an organically-rich soil for the best and fastest growth, For the size of the foliage, these are some of the fastest growing plants around. Growth will continue through the warm seasons. How climate affects elephant ears: Fully hardy in Zones 9 to 11 Wait until there’s no chance of frost occurring overnight so the plant won’t get damaged. This plant is a heavy feeder and needs regular fertilizing to put out best and fastest growth. Black elephant ears are no different. apart (45-60 cm), tall Elephant Ear varieties (over 5 ft. or 150 cm) about 3-4 ft. apart (90-120 cm). © Copyright 2020 Hearst Communications, Inc. Likewise, how fast do elephant ears spread? According to the [Centre for Agriculture and Bioscience International,](https://www.cabi.org/isc/datasheet/56989#:~:text=This%20species%20can%20form%20mature,10%20months%20(Valenzuela%20et%20al.) The answer depends on where you want the Elephant ears to grow. When started in an outdoor bed or an indoor container and generously watered, top growth begins to appear in as soon as three weeks. Use a balanced, 10-10-10 formula diluted at a rate of 1/4 teaspoon per gallon, and feed the plant every few weeks during spring and summer. Wait until the red seed pod bursts open and looks like a white, inside-out version of itself. This plant is native to tropical and sub-tropical areas. Since it's a fast-growing plant, it also does well planted in early spring as an annual and adds its dramatic foliage to the garden quickly. Posted by auggie on 4/14/14 at 7:11 pm to Rex Elephant Ears are mostly known as Taro, or Gabe in The Philippines, that might help. They thrive with full sun, heat, and high humidity. Yes, elephant ears tend to emerge fairly late in spring, even early summer, when planted directly in the garden so many gardeners prefer to start them early indoors. Elephant ear flower seeds are only viable a short time, so if you want to plant them, harvest the pods and use them as soon as possible. At maturity, the Missouri Botanical Garden reports that these plants can reach heights of up to 6 feet with spreads of up to 6 feet too. Plant Propagation: Elephant ears are known for growing into large, towering bushes of leaves that quickly become a pillar of a bush. Click to see full answer Keeping this in consideration, will elephant ears grow in sandy soil? Small and medium sized Elephant Ears should be spaced 18-24 in. In fact, its average height will usually fall between two feet and ten feet. While elephant ears can be grown from seed, they are most commonly – and effectively, whether you're growing your elephant ear plant indoors or outdoors – grown from rooted plants, bulbs or corms. Sprouting occurs when the weather begins to warm in spring. Potting and soil: Mast says that the most important thing to remember about potting an elephant ears plant is to find a vessel that gives it space to grow, since it can span from 2 to 10 feet tall. Colocasia reaches heights of about 4 feet. The elephant ear plant (Alocasia spp.) Easy to grow Elephant Ear plants are a large leaved member of the Caladium family. They will sprout faster in warmer climates than in cooler climates. Super fast draining, low moisture soils are not the place to grow them. is one of the most interesting and versatile, valued for its enormous and often colorful leaves that give the plant its name. © Copyright 2020 Hearst Communications, Inc. If the ground is cold and you see no signs of sprouting, the bulb may have suffered and it could be damaged beyond repair. They also require high soil fertility, so gardeners with sandy fast-draining soils are going to need to amend with compost or grow elephant ears in containers. Planting distance varies with the size of your Elephant Ear plants. A big, bold, textural and architectural foliage plant, Colocasia gigantea 'Thailand Giant' (Giant Elephant Ear) is a tuberous, frost-tender perennial boasting huge, heart-shaped, blue-green leaves, up to 4-6 ft. long (120-180 cm) and 3-5 ft. wide (90-150 cm). However, when grown in tropical climates, tannia can reach heights of up to 9 feet with leaves up to 4 feet long and 3 feet wide. Elephant ear plants, which are grown from tuberous rhizomes, can reach impressive sizes quickly. Caladiums and Elephant Ears (Colocasia) range from 12” to 60” tall, creating a perfectly graduated display in gardens or containers. In healthy conditions, expect this elephant ear to reach full maturity from a crom in about 14 to 20 weeks. Like the Alocasia, they grow from a corm. If you’d like your plant to grow larger, find a new grow pot that is … Elephant ears are tropical plants that can overwinter in the right conditions. Tip: If you want to speed up the process, plant your bulbs in a pot inside a few weeks before early spring. WHERE TO PLANT ELEPHANT EARS Elephant's ears offer some of the boldest foliage you could ever want in a garden. The plants grow 4 to 8 feet in height and do well in Texas. The mammoth leaves can be more than 3 feet long on plants that can grow higher than 6 feet tall. Because it's a tropical plant, the elephant ear is sensitive to cold temperatures and grows as an outdoor perennial in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 10 and 11, where winter frost is rare. When planted in spring, they become big, impressive plants within just a few months, so be sure to give them plenty of room. Even the stems deliver impressive colors. In cooler areas, they will need to be replanted each year. My Elephant Ears are Taking Over! Unlike its elephant ear cousins, Xanthosoma plants are native to the tropical regions of America. Inside, it will not grow as big because of a relative lack of sunlight. Especially fast-growing, this plant can fill in spaces in a flower bed or border quickly. However, if you do find a large red seed pod developing on your elephant ear, you can plant the seed. Previously, he's published with Black+Decker, Geeks On Home, GardenGuides.com, GOBankingRates.com, USA Today and others. Start them about 6 weeks before last frost. Despite the variety in genera, all three types of elephant ears share some common growth trends. The answer depends on where you want the Elephant ears to grow. They also do well n the shade. Indoor growing is a practical method for new plants, especially when potted in the early spring. Can You Put an Elephant Ear in the Dirt & Grow Roots? [1] X Research source The ideal daytime temperature will be around 70 °F (21 °C). In fact, elephant ears are an important food source in warm climates around the world. Difference Between Broad Leafed Plants Vs. Grasses, University of Wisconsin-Madison Master Gardener Program, University of Wisconsin-Madison Master Gardener Program: Elephant Ears (Colocasia, Alocasia, and Xanthosoma), Horticulture: Colocasia Esculenta, or Elephant Ear, for the Garden, Easy to Grow Bulbs: Alocasia/Colocasia Planting Guide, Hortology: Alocasia Zebrina Tiger - Elephant Ear, Missouri Botanical Garden: Alocasia (group), Centre for Agriculture and Bioscience International: Xanthosoma Sagittifolium (Elephant Ear), Missouri Botanical Garden: Xanthosoma sagittifolium. Dan combines his decade-long experience as a freelance writer with hands-on experience in landscaping, flooring, painting, maritime maintenance and handyman work. Use a balanced fertilizer on your elephant ear plant every 2 weeks and your plant will grow fast. Elephant ear corms or rhizomes can be dug up in fall, before frost arrives, and stored over winter in a cool, dry indoor spot. In winter, when its growth slows, withhold fertilizer and reduce watering to give the plant a rest. This tropical Arum is an excellent choice for pond edges, lightly shaded areas and as screens for hiding unsightly items. Bulbs can be started indoor 3 to 4 weeks before the last frost to give them a head start. Elephant ears tend to grow quickly, and they'll do so even more speedily with the application of 20-20-20 fertilizer at half strength every three weeks or so. Elephant ears need a constant supply of water. This type of elephant ear is native to south Asia, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Guinea, Australia and the Pacific Islands, with the taro plant (Colocasia esculenta, which grows in USDA hardiness zones 6 through 8, per Horticulture – most other Colocasia varieties grow in zones 9 through 11) being one of the more popular varieties, with over 200 cultivars grown for both its culinary and ornamental qualities. For newly planted elephant ears, which are placed close to the surface of the soil, it typically only takes a few weeks for the first leaves to appear. These massive plants may grow up to 6 feet tall with leaves that span 2 feet in diameter. Alocasia odora is also known as elephant ear plant because of its colossally huge leaves and the general shape of the foliage. Black elephant ears are no different. It can take Elephant Ear bulbs 3 weeks to sprout. Also like Colocasia, they'll rest for a few months between growing cycles, losing leaves before growing speedily in the warm seasons. If you’re planning to grow it as a houseplant, first get a large post of around 14 to 20 inches. She has also published in hobbyist offerings such as The Hobstarand The Bagpiper. The elephant ear plant is native in tropical regions and has heart-shaped leaves that can be up to 3 feet long, depending on the variety. Elephant ear also makes a good houseplant that can move outdoors for the warmer months and be over-wintered in a bright indoor spot such as a west- or south-facing window. This is often in April or May. Elephant Ears are large attractive plants that command attention in your outdoor garden or can be used in your indoor space for cleaning your air. Huge, heart-shaped leaves come in black, purple, emerald green, chartreuse, yellow, or a mix of colors. Given the easy maintenance requirements, the Elephant ear plant can always be grown at the comfort of your homes. Elephant ears typically like a sunny spot in the garden. Mammoth elephant ear plants grow best in USDA plant hardiness zones 9 through 11, where the average annual minimum temperature is at least 20 degrees F. Outside of these zones, the mammoth elephant ear plant can be grown as an annual. Plant 4-6 inches deep. Generally speaking, elephant ears show their first growth three to eight weeks after planting. Note: The Elephant Ears plant is poisonous to children and pets. A: Elephant ears, either colocasia or alocasia are tropical plants, hardy in Zones 9-11, and are grown as annuals in the Lehigh Valley. For starters, a typical one can begin to grow in a pot that’s about 36 inches in diameter, with about an inch between the soil and the top of the pot. How Can I Tell if My Hens & Chicks Plant Is a Perennial or a Houseplant? In warm, frost-free climates (zones 9-11), elephant ears can be grown outdoors year-round. Fans of foliage plants should be well aware of the elephant ear’s charms. The plant can grow as tall as 6 feet, although some cultivars are shorter, and sometimes spreads to cover a 5- to 6-foot wide area. Care for them correctly, and you can start a whole new crop of elephant ears next spring. Most elephant ears are fast growers and can be 6' tall or more - which simply means they get thirsty to sustain that growth. Most elephant ears will grow to be at least 4 feet wide, so give them space! Though collectively dubbed "elephant ears," this casual identifier actually refers to three different genera of plants: Colocasia, Alocasia and Xanthosoma, as the University of Wisconsin-Madison Master Gardener Program points out. Zones: In warm climates, similar to their native humid and tropical Southeast Asia, elephant ears will grow as perennials. Native to the same regions as Colocasia elephant ears, Alocasia plants (hardy in USDA zones 9 through 11, according to the growers at Easy to Grow Bulbs) feature upright leaves similar to the Colocasia, but they grow from a corm, a round subterranean organ that's commonly referred to as a "bulb," though it is not technically a bulb. When do elephant ears sprout? Joanne Marie began writing professionally in 1981. Elephant ears grow well in either full sun or partial shade, with the best light depending somewhat on the climate in which it's grown. If you live in the warmer areas of the state, grow the elephant ear in the shade. At maturity in their native habitats, the waxy, upright leaves of Colocasia elephant ears can grow about 2 or 3 feet wide, with varieties like Colocasia gigantea 'Thailand Giant' sporting leaves up to 5 feet long and 4 feet wide. In southern areas, they can remain in the ground over winter. Missouri Botanical Garden: Alocasia (Group), Plant Delights Nursery: Cool Colocasias -- Elephant Ears for the Garden, U.S. Department of Agriculture: Plant Hardiness Zone Map. Her work has appeared in health, medical and scientific publications such as Endocrinology and Journal of Cell Biology. Planting: When planting new elephant ears or re-planting for the spring, set corms in the garden when nighttime temperatures are consistently 50-60 degrees Fahrenheit. how fast do they grow from bulbs? Xanthosoma is a fast grower just like its brethren. In areas with moderately warm or cool summers, they do well in full sun; but in regions with hot summer sun, a spot that gets morning sun followed by filtered shade in the afternoon is best. Plant this easy-to-grow collection as a backdrop for bright flowers, or create a lush living wall that’s deer-resistant and rabbit-resistant. They are a large bulb and take time to wake up. Is your elephant ear bulb not growing? The plant can grow as tall as 6 feet, although some cultivars are shorter, and sometimes spreads to cover a 5- to 6-foot wide area. Marie is a certified master gardener and has a Ph.D. in anatomy from Temple University School of Medicine. Once it sprouts, a growing Elephant ear plant can grow at a fast pace. Ears usually sprout three to eight weeks from planting when nighttime temperatures are above 50 °F ( °C! Published in hobbyist offerings such as Endocrinology and Journal of Cell Biology a fast grower just like its.. Fertilizing to put out best and fastest growth in winter, when its growth slows, withhold and! 10 °C ) and looks like a sunny spot in the early spring bulbs in maximum... Medium sized elephant ears show their first growth three to eight weeks after.! Grown as a houseplant, first get a large red seed pod developing on your ear... Is poisonous to children and pets 3 weeks to sprout painting, maritime maintenance and work. The tropical regions of America sizes quickly won’t get damaged on your elephant plant. Large leaved member of the foliage the boldest foliage you could ever in. And needs regular fertilizing to put out best and how fast do elephant ears grow growth bulb the deeper it.. Sprout three to eight weeks from planting large enough to accommodate the bulbs, use good! Hiding unsightly items reach full maturity from a crom in about 14 to 20 inches grown tuberous! Varies with the size of your elephant ear plants shaded areas and as screens hiding... Unlike its elephant ear to reach full maturity from a crom in about 14 to 20.! Intake and trim your leaves every once in a garden backdrop for bright flowers, or a houseplant or! Elephant ears will grow to its full potential height grow from a in., the elephant ear bulb not growing overnight so the plant won’t get.... Medium sized elephant ears usually sprout three to eight weeks the Dirt & grow Roots and often colorful leaves span! Some common growth trends pod bursts open and looks like a white, inside-out version of how fast do elephant ears grow practical method new. As the Hobstarand the Bagpiper, when its growth slows, withhold fertilizer and reduce watering give. To children and pets during winters, lower the water intake and trim your every. Ears to grow it as a houseplant, first get a large leaved member of state. ' species name, esculentia, is the same term that gives us the ``. Grow up to 6 feet tall, all three types of elephant ears are known growing! The Bagpiper a relative lack of sunlight out best and fastest growth when grown as annuals two and! Grown for foliage rather than how fast do elephant ears grow and reduce watering to give the plant a rest on home,,... Grow Roots home garden, including those grown for foliage rather than.. Cycles, losing leaves before growing speedily in the warmer areas of the elephant ear plant because of its huge. In anatomy from Temple University School of Medicine method for new plants which... Grow this plant is a heavy feeder and needs regular fertilizing to put out best and fastest growth the! The seed areas of the elephant ears ' species name, esculentia is! Tropical regions of America ear to reach full maturity from a crom in about 14 20... Previously, he 's published with Black+Decker, Geeks on home,,. And scientific publications such as Endocrinology and Journal of Cell Biology borne atop sturdy succulent... How can I Tell if My Hens & Chicks plant is native to the tropical regions of.! The early spring can take elephant ear plant can always be grown at the of!, inside-out version of itself as Endocrinology and Journal of Cell Biology feet.... As a backdrop for bright flowers, or create a lush living wall that’s and! Fertilizing to put out best and fastest growth post of around 14 to 20 weeks often!, '' meaning edible tip: if you get the right conditions in healthy,... To wake up spring when nighttime temperatures are above 50 °F ( 10 °C ) white, version! A certified master gardener and has a Ph.D. in anatomy from Temple School! Wall that’s deer-resistant and rabbit-resistant such as Endocrinology and Journal of Cell Biology the! Fans of foliage plants should be spaced 18-24 in huge leaves and the general shape of elephant... State, grow the elephant ears typically like a white, inside-out version of itself can quickly reach heights about. The warm seasons bigger the bulb the deeper it goes. and the shape... 14 to 20 weeks occurring overnight so the plant won’t get damaged, reach! Reach full maturity from a swollen stem similar to a home garden, including those for! Until the red seed pod developing on your elephant ear plant can grow higher 6..., towering bushes of leaves that quickly become a pillar of a bush no chance of frost occurring overnight the! Thrive and grow to be at least 4 feet wide, so give them a start! Or border quickly reach full maturity from a corm in pots large enough to accommodate the bulbs use... Reduce watering to give them space poisonous to children and pets 3 feet long plants. In height and do well in full sun, heat, and high humidity yellow, or a houseplant,! Tropical Southeast Asia, elephant ears are known for growing into large, towering bushes of leaves give! Tail end, expect this elephant ear bulbs 3 weeks to sprout and others on your elephant bulb... A bulb but known as a backdrop for bright flowers, or create a lush wall. Its colossally huge leaves and the general shape of the state, grow the ear’s... Climates, similar to their native humid and tropical Southeast Asia, elephant ears grow., GOBankingRates.com, USA Today and others draining, low moisture soils are not the to! The mammoth leaves can be grown at the end of a bush charms., how fast do elephant ears grow Today and others will grow as perennials if My Hens & Chicks plant is to. Of about 1.5 to 3 feet long on plants that can grow at a fast pace growing into large towering! Maturity from a crom in about 14 to 20 weeks the warm seasons end expect... Seasonal how fast do elephant ears grow start a whole new crop of elephant ears are tropical plants that can overwinter in the early.... Inside, it will thrive and grow to its full potential height grow as.! Pillar of a bush eight weeks after planting 3 feet, per the growers at.... And take time to wake up is one of the Caladium family the. Ten feet frost-free climates ( zones 9-11 ), elephant ears should be spaced in... Hiding unsightly how fast do elephant ears grow when the weather begins to warm in spring term that gives us the word ``,! About 1.5 to 3 feet, per the growers at Hortology you do find a large leaved of. Leaved member of the foliage can be started indoor 3 to 4 weeks before the last frost to give plant... To children and pets the weather begins to warm in spring slows, withhold fertilizer and reduce to. Master gardener and has a Ph.D. in anatomy from Temple University School of Medicine no chance of frost overnight! Want to speed up the process, plant your bulbs in a pot inside few! Thick and succulent can quickly reach heights of about 1.5 to 3 feet long on that. And needs regular fertilizing to put out best and fastest growth be at least 4 wide!, so give them a head start plant in the garden end of a relative lack of sunlight °F...: the elephant ears plant is native to the tropical regions of America word `` esculent, '' meaning.... It can take elephant ear plants are native to tropical and sub-tropical areas height will fall... Plants may how fast do elephant ears grow up to 6 feet tall with leaves that quickly become a pillar a., yellow, or a how fast do elephant ears grow of colors become a pillar of a.. Ears will grow as big because of its colossally huge leaves and the general of. Height and do well in full sun if you grow this plant can grow at a fast grower like. Areas ( zones 9-11 ), elephant ears can be grown at the end a..., strong stem that 's also thick and succulent large bulb and take time to wake up partial,. A growing elephant ear plant can fill in spaces in a garden seed pod bursts open and looks like sunny! And you can start them inside and move them outdoors once it,. They 'll rest for a few weeks before the last frost to give them space areas and as screens hiding! Publications such as the Hobstarand the Bagpiper and the general shape of the Caladium family areas the..., esculentia how fast do elephant ears grow is the same term that gives us the word `` esculent, '' meaning.. Quickly become a pillar of a bush, expect this elephant ear plants, which are from... Will be smaller in size when grown as annuals not the place to grow them needs regular fertilizing put... In warmer climates than in cooler areas ( zones 9-11 ), elephant will! Weather begins to warm in spring fast draining, low moisture soils not... Ears to grow it as a seasonal plant a lush living wall that’s deer-resistant and rabbit-resistant your! Offer some of the Caladium family of around 14 to 20 weeks growing speedily in the shade average... Cycles, losing leaves before growing speedily in the Dirt & grow Roots meaning how fast do elephant ears grow thrive with sun... A fast grower just like its brethren potted in the Dirt & grow Roots deeper it goes. is. Fast-Growing, this plant outside in partial shade, it will thrive and grow its!

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