The Growing Place
Calidora Elephant's Ear foliage
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Height: 7 feet
Spread: 5 feet
Hardiness Zone: (annual)
Other Names: Alocasia, Taro
Large and impressive leaves with thick ribs and strong petioles, that emerge in an upright and arching habit, and can reach up to 7 feet; elegant as a large accent or screen; perfect for patio containers
Calidora Elephant's Ear's attractive enormous crinkled heart-shaped leaves emerge light green in spring, turning bluish-green in color the rest of the year. It features solitary conical powder blue hooded flowers with white centers rising above the foliage in mid summer. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.
Calidora Elephant's Ear is an open herbaceous annual with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its medium texture blends into the garden, but can always be balanced by a couple of finer or coarser plants for an effective composition.
This is a relatively low maintenance plant, and usually looks its best without pruning, although it will tolerate pruning. It has no significant negative characteristics.
Calidora Elephant's Ear is recommended for the following landscape applications;
- Mass Planting
- General Garden Use
- Container Planting
Planting & Growing
Calidora Elephant's Ear will grow to be about 7 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 5 feet. It has a low canopy with a typical clearance of 3 feet from the ground. Although it's not a true annual, this plant can be expected to behave as an annual in our climate if left outdoors over the winter, usually needing replacement the following year. As such, gardeners should take into consideration that it will perform differently than it would in its native habitat.
This plant should be grown in a location that is shaded from the hot afternoon sun. It is quite adaptable, prefering to grow in average to wet conditions, and will even tolerate some standing water. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in rich soils. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This particular variety is an interspecific hybrid, and parts of it are known to be toxic to humans and animals, so care should be exercised in planting it around children and pets.
Calidora Elephant's Ear is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. With its upright habit of growth, it is best suited for use as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. It is even sizeable enough that it can be grown alone in a suitable container. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.