This blog is about growing tropical-looking plants in the Phoenix, Arizona area

January 17, 2015

Growing an Elephant Ear plant in just water

Last month, just before Christmas, as I was tidying up the yard, I dug up a little Elephant Ear plant that had sprouted where it wouldn't have room to grow. I've had Elephants Ears here for many years, and they send out a lot of sprouts, which I remove and mostly throw away, but it pains me to do so.

But I'm experimenting mostly, so I put this little sprout in a bottle filled with ordinary tap water and a couple house plant spikes, and put it on a sunny windowsill. Sure enough, it continued growing. Which answers once and for all that you can't ever overwater Elephant Ears, they will grow in just water with no soil. The one in the photo was been in that bottle on the windowsill for about a month and all of the leaves you see are new since it's been in the bottle.

So this morning I am beginning the process of adapting it to be outdoors, called *hardening off*. If I moved it outside and just left it there, it wouldn't like it, it's still too cold outside, especially at night. So the trick is to move it out into the sun for a while, then back to the windowsill and night, and so on for a week or so until it's ready to live outside.

Elephant Ears
Not sure where I'm gonna put it, it may just be planted in a pot. The problem that I have discovered with these plants is how incredibly fast they grow. Planted in the right place, a tiny plant like this can become like a small tree in a couple of years. Mine is a Tropical Paradise, not a jungle, so I want to control how things grow in my garden - and Elephant Ears get out of control fast!

I think I'll go out and wander around and ponder where this one could be planted - if there's room in the garden.
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