ELEPHANT EARS

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Alocasia cucullata (chinese taro) - A very handsome, compact "elephant ear" which develops multiple erect stems that display the attractive, glossy, dark green, heart shaped leaves well.  Zones 8 - 10.

Alocasia 'Hilo Beauty' (hawaiian elephant ear) - An amazing foliage plant for any semi-shady location.  It combines beautifully green, creamy white and yellow in just the right way to enhance any garden setting.  It goes dormant in the winter and while dormant prefers not to be watered.  Thus, it is perfect for container culture where moisture can be better controlled during the winter months.  Zones 8 - 10.

Alocasia odora (fragrant elephant ear) - A huge and imposing plant in the landscape with erect, sagittate-ovate leaves up to 40 inches long.  A favorite of all garden visitors that is hardy in zones 8 - 10.

Alocasia plumbea (colorful elephant ear) - A vigorous, herbaceous perennial with large, arrowhead shaped foliage that provides unique color and form in the landscape.  Zones 8 - 10.

Alocasia plumbea 'Metallica' (violet elephant ear) - This clone has a light purple sheen on the leaf blade and a marbled effect on the petioles.

Alocasia plumbea 'Rubra' (red elephant ear) - This very beautiful, large elephant ear has a reddish color and tinting over the entire plant.  This is a very showy plant and is easy to grow.  It is well liked by all who see it.

Colocasia antiquorum:  Please see Colocasia esculenta 'Antiquorum'.

Colocasia 'Black Magic' - A splendid, herbaceous perennial cultivar up to 3 feet tall with attractive, reddish petioles and very handsome, deep maroon leaf blades.  Please note that this plant does not like to be in water!  Zones 8 - 10.

Colocasia esculenta (cocoyam / taro / dasheen/ elephant ear / tanyah) - A herbaceous, tuberous perennial that is robust and leafy.  It has been cultivated since antiquity and is an important staple for carbohydrates in the humid, lowland topics (often in lowlying areas around stream and river banks).  They are used as a substitute for potatoes and may be eaten boiled, baked or roasted but not raw!    The velvety, green leaf blades are borne on petioles up to 3 feet long and get up to 32 inches long by 14 inches wide.  They are cordate-sagittate and display conspicuous veination.  They spathe is pale yellow.  These plants grow best in fairly heavy, fertile, moisture retentive soils that are rich in organic matter.  They should be watered plentifully and actually grow quite well in up to one foot of water, making a nice choice for the bog or pond edge.  This species is native to the tropical regions of Asia and is naturalized throughout the tropics and warm temperate regions worldwide.  Zones 8 - 10.

Colocasia esculenta 'Antiquorum' (egyptian taro / eddo) - The culture for this variety is the same as for the species.  However, this one is more tolerant of sandy soils, cold and drought.  It also has a particularly good, nutty flavor when roasted.

Colocasia esculenta 'Black Beauty' - This is a tissue culture mutation off of 'Illustris' that was selected for having a more thorough coverage of the black coloration on the leaf blades.  A real beauty!

Colocasia esculenta 'Fontanesia' (violet stemmed taro) - The petioles of this clone are dark red-purple to violet and the leaf blade is a dark green having violet veins and a violet margin.

Colocasia esculenta 'Illustris' (imperial taro / black caladioum) - The light green leaves of this clone are beautifully marked with bluish black between the primary veins.

Colocasia esculenta 'Nancy's Revenge' - This clone sports a white center when the leaves are mature.

Xanthosoma atrovirens:  Please see Xanthosoma sagittifolium.

Xanthosoma belophyllum:  Please see Xanthosoma sagittifolium.

Xanthosoma mafaffa - A splendid, large, herbaceous perennial with large (2 feet by 3 feet), matte green leaves that are held horizontally on leaf petioles up to 6 feet long.  It makes a dramatic statement in the landscape.  Hardy in zones 8 - 10.

Xanthosoma robustum (giant ape / giant elephant ear) - This is the largest of the elephant ears that we grow with magnificent leaves up to 5 or 6 feet across and from 7 to 8 feet long.  These spectacular plants can dwarf a large man.  Hardy in zones 8 - 10.

Xanthosoma sagittifolium (green ape / tannia) - An edible, tuberous perennial with stems to about 3 feet and huge leaves.  These broad, sagittate to triangular leaves are fleshy, dark green above and glaucous beneath.  They have prominent veins and are borne on petioles up to 6 feet long and have blades up to 6 feet long.  The spathes are up to 12 inches long, being yellow-green to white internally and green externally.  The tubers are an important food crop, being the staple carbohydrate source throughout the tropics.  They may be eaten grilled, fried, pureed in soups or barbequed.  The skin should be avoided.  The young leaves and shoots may also be eaten if boiled first.  The plants are sensitive to water-logging and should be mulched to protect from the cold.  This species is native to the neotropics and is hardy in zones 8 - 10.

Xanthosoma sagittifolium 'Albomarginatum Monstrosum' (mickey mouse elephant ear) - This is a vigorous growing, smaller clone with leaves having green, white, gold and yellow variegation.  It is very ornamental and quite a conversation piece.  The apex of the leaf blade often forms a pocket that holds water and has a "tail".  In overall appearance, the leaf blade resembles the shape used to represent Mickey Mouse's head.

Xanthosoma sagittifolium 'Lanceolatum' - An unusual sport of the above with blackish, lance shaped foliage.

Xanthosoma sagittifolium "Yellow Leaf" - An attractive elephant ear with leaf blades and petioles having a golden cast.  Makes a great contrasting companion for the blacks and purples.

Xanthosoma violaceum (blue ape / blue tannia / blue taro) - This is an exceptional foliage plant with large, arrow shaped leaf blades in an inky shade of violet, especially beneath.  It is a tuberous perennial with stems up to 3 feet tall.  The dark purple-brown leaf petioles are up to 6 feet long and the leaf blades also up to 6 feet long.  The spathe is up to 12 inches long being cream within and green-violet outside.  The tubers of this species have pink flesh.  This species is native to the neotropics and is hardy in zones 8 - 10.