Colocasia esculenta ‘black magic’ and other species.
Colocasia are grown for the foliage,and both indoors and outdoors they are one of the most sought after plants for decorative foliage. Lark and textured, and sometimes colourful, you will find all of these characteristics in these plants.
Although they are exotics, they are actually known by a few common names, one of these being taro, and this is an edible form. It is the varieties with dramatic foliage that appeals to gardeners, landscapers and those who love indoor plants.
Plant Profile and Growing Hints
Given its dramatic near black foliage which also happens to be large and gives a tropical jungle feel to the garden it is a natural that Colocasia esculenta ‘black magic’ is perhaps the best known of these great foliage plants, however a little bit of extra information and a few different species and cultivars is always useful.
Tropical plants that are happy in a humus rich moist soil. Elephant Ear Plants or Colocasia are aroids that are grown mainly for their foliage. Species and cultivars include Colocasia esculenta ‘Black Magic’ , Colocasia Gigantea or ‘Elephant Ear Plant’ and Colocasia Illustris or ‘Paisley Elephant Ears’. All are fantastic foliage palnts.
Colocasia Species and varieties
- C. Gigantea or ‘Elephant Ear Plant’
- C. Illustris or ‘Paisley Elephant Ear Plant’ or ‘Mottled Taro’
- C. esculenta ‘Black Magic’ (pictured right)
- C. Elena ‘Chartreuse Elephant Ear’
- C. antiquorum ‘Illustris”or ‘Imperial Taro’
Growing Colocasia in pots
The pots need to heavy or weighted so that when the plants puts on growth, and it will grow to large size, the pot does not topple over. Remember to keep nice and moist.
Growing in the ground
Simple given a warm frost free position and a humus rich moist soil, try in a wtaer garden near the margins or in a boggy area. Most species may also be grown next to ponds or streams.
Other areas of interest