Spreading Elephant Ear – Transplanting

Q: This elephant ear started about seven years ago from a shriveled up bulb found in a work bench area. It has gotten so big I need to know the easiest way to transplant some of it to different areas of my yard. Is it easy to transplant portions?

A: Wow – that’s a bigun!!

Several plants are called elephant ear, most are in the species of Colocasia and Alocasia. They have differing growth habits: some make offshoots from a central corm while others spread by sending out sub-surface roots. It looks like you hit the jackpot for a spreading elephant ear!

Gently excavate around the green stems and identify small plants you can sever from the mother plant. These can easily be transplanted in your yard or given to friends for immediate planting. However, not all elephant ear species are winter hardy here.

The solution: If you don’t want to take chances, dig small plants in late October, cut off the stems, and store the roots in a cardboard box in a cool place during winter, planting them outdoors in late April.

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