Hawaiian Hearts Elephant Ear
Alocasia cucullata is a perennial herb but in some areas it grows as an annual. It has beautiful heart shaped glossy green foliage with prominent veins on tall green stems. The stem, of light green color, is disproportional to the leaves, because it can be very thick compared with the size of the leaves. The plants develop into multi stemmed clumps about 1,2 m tall and often equally as wide
The flies are attracted by a strong, peculiar fragrance emitted by the inflorescences during their blooming sequences.
Alocasia performs best in part shade in organically rich, moist to wet soils. Provide a sheltered location to protect the decorative leaves from strong winds. Leaves often scorch when exposed to full sun. Plants exposed to sunlight will have paler foliage with a yellowish tinge or bleached look about the leaves. Older leaves die off as new ones emerge and should be removed as soon as they become tatty and unsightly. Long, lanky stems can be cut back to almost ground level to induce new, compact growth.
The plant requires regular watering and fertilization. Reduce watering in winter. It grows best in higher rainfall areas of the low land tropics.
All parts of a plant contain calcium oxalate crystals, an irritant to the mouth and esophagus. They are toxic to cats and dogs.
Use this Alocasia Cucullata en masse in sub-tropical gardens to lend bold foliage to rich, green backdrops, to fill in space under large tree canopies and alongside ponds and garden streams. It is ideal for shaded patio gardens, either in pots or planted directly in the ground and it also makes an effective container plant for verandas and well-lit rooms inside the home