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Tropical Bog Plants: Colocasia esculenta 'Black Magic'

Botanical name: Colocasia esculenta 'Black Magic'

Common name: black taro

also known as (elephant's ear)

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Planted
2
times

Sprite
created by:
chief cultivator

Mercer island, Wa

at a glance

Soil: damp, acidic, clay
Sun:
  
Zones: 7a thru 10b
Care:
average
Lifespan:
perennial
Category:   
Attributes:

poisonous

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description for "Tropical Bog Plants: Colocasia esculenta 'Black Magic'"

Black taro has very dark maroon, elephant ear shaped leaves on burgundy stems. Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings. Elephant’s ears are generally not hardy anywhere colder than Zone 9, so treat them like other summer-blooming bulbs. Let frost kill the top growth, then dig up the bulbs and dry them in open shade. Soon they look shriveled, and any clinging soil dries up and falls off with the roots. Hang them in well-ventilated sacks in a dry, cool (about 50°F) place.When spring arrives, plant the bulbs in 1- or 2-gallon pots and put them in a greenhouse to give them an early start. Position them so that any remnants of last year’s stem rise above soil level. Since the bulbs have no roots at this point, water them once, and don’t douse them again until leaves emerge. Grow in a warm greenhouse or outdoors at a pool margin, in a moist border, or in large aquatic containers. Propagation: Divide in winter or early spring. Problems: Soft rot, bacterial blight, corm and root rot, and dasheen mosaic virus are common. Aphids, whiteflies, and spider mites occur. [Source: http://www.finegardening.com/plantguide/colocasia-esculenta-black-magic-elephant-ear.aspx] -edited by dtd siegelgirl

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