Nothing screams tropical in the summer garden than the magnificent Elephant Ear! These beloved, easy to grow tubers produce the most dramatic, exotic foliage summer to fall. There are two main types of Elephant Ears - Alocasia (upward pointing, glossy leaves) and Colocasia (tall stems with velvety leaves that hang similar to elephants's ears). Elephant Ears range in color, height, pattern and texture. Colocasia esculenta is grown in Hawaii for food and is commonly known as taro.
About this Variety
Elephant Ear Tea Cup produces shiny, olive-green leaves, with a purple veined underside that forms a tea cup-like form and catches water during rain. The rain water pools in the cup until it gets too full, at which time the stems bend slightly to pour out the water, and then the process starts all over again. This variety is pest resistant and attracts numerous pollinators.
- Exotic, tropical foliage
- Grows well in containers
- Foliage summer through fall
- Thrives in moist areas, including standing water
- Easy to grow
Full sun to partial shade
Foliage Summer to Fall
Grows 36-60" tall
Plant 18-24" apart, 2-4" deep
Grow as Perennial in zones 8-10, Grow as Annual elsewhere.
Plant Elephant Ears outdoors in the spring after all danger of frost has passed. Elephant Ears thrive in a full sun to partially shaded spot in moist, rich soil. Elephant Ears will tolerate full sun but prefer to have a little shade. Plant tubers 2-4" deep and 18-24" apart. When planting a large number of bulbs in one bed, excavate the entire area to the recommended depth, work fertilizer into the bottom of the trench, set out bulbs and then cover all at once. Water thoroughly at planting. While actively growing, water frequently and thoroughly so that water will reach roots. Mulch to keep the soil cool and to prevent the soil from drying out. Fertilize at planting and during growing season every two to three weeks. In areas where Elephant Ears are not winter hardy, dig up tubers in fall before frost. Clean off roots and store at 50ºF. Replant tubers in spring after all danger of frost has passed.
Elephant Ears are suitable for large pots, raised beds and will grow in standing water. Water well during dry periods. Some varieties of Elephant Ears can be grown indoors in a very bright location in consistently moist soil.