Do you know time it is?.......well if not....it’s ‘Caladium Time’! If you have some growing in medium to large pots you may now see the stems and a few leaves starting to show up. If yours are in the ground....well probably not quite yet. Tom and I love our caladiums and we have many of them and in different colors around our yard.....in pots and in the ground and we’ll have a few in pots on our pool deck as they begin to show their leaves.
Photo: Joani MacCubbin
Caladiums are the toughest shade-loving plants. They come in just about any color arrangement and design you can imagine. Springtime is when you will probably first notice the bulbs at your local garden center as they are usually displayed along with other ‘bulb’ plants. Many people pass them by as they don’t wish to be bothered with planting ‘bulbs’.....but when you first see them at the stores and garden centers they are available and ready to plant in your pots or in the ground. And....even better.....a little later in the season you may also find them as a full sized plants in their color in the garden centers.
Caladiums are wonderful plants for a shady area by your home or even add some nice color around your pool deck as they don’t shed or become messy at all. They will give you some very nice color there. They will also do well in a shady or part sun garden areas.
If you decide to add a few to your home. Plant the bulbs 1 - 2 inches deep in late winter or spring.....use good soil. Water lightly until its leaves begin to show then it will need a little more moisture. Eventually your Caladiums will grow 18 to 24 inches tall.
Caladiums will die back in the late fall and that’s ok as they will return better than ever the following spring. Many people become ‘caladium collectors’ when they discover their beauty and find out just how many different color patterns there are.
They don’t seem to mind our summer heat or humidity at all. When mature water 2 - 3 times a week.....and give it a little fertilizer once a month.
Another thing you should know......it has very few problems.....maybe a few snails will irritate it a little but they are a very tough and a very pretty plant to add to your yard.