Alocasia wentii of the Araceae family is a large elephant ear plant that is easy to care for so long as you grow it in the right growing condition, to beautify your home and patio. This Alocasia genus plant originates from tropical regions and you can find it growing naturally in the mountains of New Guinea and nearby countries. Due to its size and beauty, many plant enthusiasts collected Alocasia wentii plants from their natural habitats and spread them across the world.
Read this guide to know everything about Alocasia wentii including its history and care tips.
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- What Is Alocasia Wentii?
- Alocasia Wentii Care Tips
What Is Alocasia Wentii?
Alocasia wentii is a giant elephant ear plant popular amongst plant enthusiasts as an indoor and patio plant. The plant is prized heavily for its huge size. Even though Alocasia wentii is a very beautiful and large plant, it is very easy to grow so long as you give it the right care.
Alocasia Wentii Care Tips
Note that elephant ear plants are very easy to care for so long as you are growing them in the right growing conditions.
If you have some problems in growing your Alocasia wentii, you should check this article for the suitable growing conditions, as well as solutions to some problems that you may face.
Here are the care tips for your giant elephant ears:
– Water Requirement
Water is very important for plants as they need it to grow. If you do not understand your plant watering needs, however, you can harm the plant by overwatering it or not giving it enough water.
While Alocasia wentii plants love water, they also love a dry substrate. The best substrate for elephant ears is one that is well-drained, nutrient-rich and very quick to drain.
The best time to water your Alocasia wentii plants is when the top one to two inches of the substrate is dry. If you water your plants too soon, you may be overwatering them and can expose them to root rot.
Watering your plants too late can cause stunted growth. Make sure that you find the balance when watering your plants.
– Light Requirement
Every plant needs light to grow as it cannot photosynthesize properly without sufficient light, as Too much light, can burn them. The optimum light for Alocasia wentii is bright but indirect light. You can easily achieve this if you are growing them indoors as you only need to grow them in a bright living room.
If you are growing your elephant ears outside, grow them under a canopy or try to filter the light. Remember that they do not like direct sunlight, hence you may see that their leaves are burning or wrinkling if they have too much light or sunburn.
Humidity is important for plants as it helps them in transpiration. If the humidity is not enough for your plants, they can lose water easily and become weak. If the humidity is too much, your plants can become susceptible to root rot and other diseases.
Alocasia wentii is a tropical plant and needs around 60-80 percent humidity. If the humidity in your home is not up to 60 percent, you should place the pot on a pebble tray with water so that the evaporating water can increase the humidity. Additionally, you may also use a humidifier.
If you choose to mist the plant for humidity, mist the surrounding of the plant and not directly on the leaf. If the humidity of the room is way above 80 percent, you should increase the ventilation of the room so that excess vapor can leave the room.
You should always consider the temperature of the room or environment. Temperature can boost or inhibit the growth of plants, for instance, the temperature can trigger transpiration and water/nutrient absorption.
Alocasia wentii plants do not like a quick or drastic temperature change, so if you are growing them indoors, you should keep them far from heaters and air conditioners. The optimum temperature to grow elephant ears is 70-80 degrees Fahrenheit. Remember that Alocasia wentii has tropical origins.
The temperature should never go close to 90 or 44 degrees Fahrenheit. As a heat-loving plant, you should not grow your elephant ear outside in frost and very cold temperatures. Note that the best USDA hardiness zone for your Alocasia wentii is zone 9b-11.
As you already know that nutrients are very important for plants to grow, however the major nutrients that your Alocasia plant needs are nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. They also need nutrients such as iron and magnesium in little quantities.
You can use water-soluble fertilizer for your Alocasia wentii plants. You should give more nutrients to potted plants as they can quickly lose nutrients. You can give nutrients to your Alocasia wentii plants while you water them. Simply add the water-soluble fertilizer to the water.
If your plant is suffering from one or more nutrient deficiencies, you can apply foliar fertilizer on the leaves to quickly fix the deficiency.
Pruning is not a must, but it is important to control the size and growth rate of your Alocasia wentii. Alocasia wentii plants can grow very large, hence if you feel that they are outgrowing their space, you can prune them regularly to reduce their size or slow their growth.
To prune your Alocasia wentii plants, you should use a sterilized knife or scissors to cut the leaves or petioles. When pruning the plant, check for and remove dead parts so that the plant can continue to look fresh and beautiful. Remember that it is not a must to prune your Alocasia wentii.
If you want your Alocasia wentii to grow big, repotting is crucial, as you should repot Alocasia wentii plants once a year in spring. When repotting, use a pot that is four to five inches wider than the previous one.
To repot Alocasia wentii or elephant ear, gently tap the pot to loosen the soil. You can use your hands or a garden trowel to dig off the plant. It is important to make sure that you do not damage your Alocasia wentii roots. Furthermore, before transferring it into the new pot, you can check the roots for damaged roots and try to prune off every damaged root.
– Soil Mix
Mulch helps your plants and also gives your home better aesthetics. Mulch can also help retain some moisture in the substrate so that it does not fully go dry. Mulch also prevents weed from competing with your plants. According to the type of mulch that you use, mulch can beautify your home by adding various colors.
You can use organic or inorganic mulch, for instance, indoor Alocasia wentii plants, go for inorganic mulch such as pebbles and other beautiful stones. You can use organic mulch which also acts as a slow-release fertilizer for your outdoor Alocasia wentii plants.
The first factor in the environment of your elephant ear that you should consider is the substrate and pot.
The suitable Alocasia plant soil is porous and has a pH of five to eight. Your elephant ear substrate should be nutrient-rich as you can amend it with organic matter. You can buy a suitable potting mix for your elephant ear plants, make some by yourself or simply grow the plant in your garden soil.
To make a suitable potting mix for your elephant ear, mix one-part loam, half-part sand and half-part organic matter such as compost, it is important to continue mixing them until you have an even consistency. You can add perlite and vermiculite to boost the water drainage and moisture retention ability of the substrate.
– Bloom Care
Even though you can choose not to care for the bloom, you can help your elephant ears by cutting the flowers to save energy. When they produce flowers, they use most of their energy to produce pollen and other agents of pollination.
It is completely safe to leave the flowers in your elephant ear plants, however, you do not need the flowers to propagate your plant as there are other easier methods to do so.
How do you propagate your giant elephant ear plant so that you can have more without always going to the store to buy another one? Keep on reading.
It is fun and easy to propagate Alocasia wentii plants. Use the methods and tips below:
– Soil Propagation of Cutting
Propagating the cutting in the soil is the most conventional way to propagate Alocasia wentii. Elephant ears will grow in clumps, so you can propagate them by dividing them. To propagate your elephant ear, gently remove them from the substrate.
Use a sterilized knife to divide the plant. Wait until the cuts are dry and then plant the cuttings in the soil. Water the plant regularly until you see growth. Note that you may have to wait for up to 10 days before you notice new growth.
– Water Propagation of Cutting
You can easily propagate your Alocasia wentii cuttings in water. This method of propagation helps you to monitor the growth of your plant until you are ready to transfer it into a suitable substrate. To propagate the cutting in water, you should first divide it just as you did in the previous method.
Dip the cutting in water so that around four inches of the bottom part is submerged while the remaining part is above the water level. Make sure that the water is clean. You should replace the water regularly so that bacteria cannot attack your plant.
In less than 10 days, you should see roots developing in the cutting. When the root system is matured enough for planting, you can transfer the plant into a suitable potting mix.
– Stolon Propagation
Remember that Alocasia wentii grows in clumps hence before the runner or stolon grows into another plant that clumps with the mother plant, you can quickly collect it and propagate it with water just the way you did in the previous method.
Water propagation is best for the stolon as the roots may not be fully developed when you want to propagate it. Remember to replace the water regularly so that bacteria do not attack your young plant. If you are finding it difficult to grow the stolon as roots will not appear, you can dip it in a rooting hormone before planting it.
Now you are properly fit to care for and propagate your Alocasia wentii. While you are good to go, you also need to watch out for some problems that you may face when growing elephant ears. Continue reading to find out more.
Here are some problems (as well as their solutions) that you should watch out for:
Overwatering is a common problem that people who grow Alocasia wentii face. If you are not careful, you can give more water than what your plant needs. You can tell that you are overwatering your Alocasia wentii when you notice sweat or water droplets on the leaves. Another way to know is when you notice brown spots on the leaves.
Remember that overwatering can lead to root rot, so you should not give your plant too much water.
– Not Watering Enough
Every plant needs water, so you need to consistently water your elephant ears. If you do not give enough water to your elephant ear, you may notice wrinkled leaves as well as stunted growth. You may also notice that the plant is weak and dying.
You should water your Alocasia wentii as soon as the top few inches of the substrate are dry. Therefore, do not wait until the entire substrate is dry before you water the plant.
– Insufficient Light
As noted, light is very important for every plant. Hence, without sufficient light, your elephant ear can have stunted growth, the leaves will become pale and it may die soon. Your elephant ear needs bright but indirect light, hence if you are growing it outside, make sure that it has between four to five hours of the morning sun.
For indoor plants, make sure that the light is switched on so that your plants can properly photosynthesize.
If you give your Alocasia wentii too much light, it can get a sunburn, additionally, you will know that your plant has sunburn if the leaves are wrinkled and look burned on their edges. Sunburn also causes the leaves to look pale. Remember that you should filter the light reaching your outdoor Alocasia wentii. You can plant it under a canopy or use a shade cloth.
Too many nutrients in the soil can burn your elephant ears. Over-fertilizing can kill your plant as well. Make sure that you use water-soluble fertilizer or organic matter. If you must amend the soil with manure, make sure that it is rotted manure so that it does not burn your plants.
If your plant looks burnt, you should reduce the rate of feeding it. Nonetheless, you can flood the substrate with clean water, it is key to remember that the substrate should be well-drained.
– Pests and Diseases
Pests such as spider mites, thrips, and mealybugs frequently attack Alocasia wentii. Some garden snails can also cause havoc on your plant. You can use neem oil to repel insect and mollusk pests.
Leaf blight and rust are fungal pests and you should get proper treatment products from gardening shops to cure these diseases. A safety tip is to isolate sick plants so that they do not spread diseases to other plants.
Alocasia wentii is toxic, so you should not allow your kids and pets to play with or consume the leaves. The leaves can irritate the stomach.
– How Do I Pick My Alocasia Wentii?
You can start your Alocasia wentii by cutting. You can buy Alocasia wentii cutting from various online stores as well as gardening shops near you. If you are buying your plant from a local gardening store, examine the leaves and make sure that each leaf is fresh.
Do not buy plants with spots on the leaves, in addition, do not buy weak plants. If you want, you can buy matured Alocasia wentii plants, but if possible, go for younger plants as they will adapt to their new environment (i.e. your home) easily.
– How to Identify Alocasia Wentii
The best way to identify an Alocasia wentii plant is with its size. This elephant ear plant can grow leaves with lengths up to 12 inches. The leaves are lush and deep green. Beneath each leaf is a display of purple and bronze. Alocasia wentii plants can grow up to 118 inches tall except when you are growing them in little pots or are pruning them regularly.
The flowers of this elephant ear are not so impressive as they are pale-colored spathes. Each bloom can last for a few days. The flowers of Alocasia wentii are not the desirable feature of plant enthusiasts searching for indoor plants.
– What Are the Uses of Alocasia Wentii?
The major use of Alocasia wentii is keeping it as an ornamental plant. Elephant ears make excellent houseplants because of their broad and beautiful leaves. You can also grow Alocasia wentii in sheltered gardens, use them to beautify your walkway, as well as give them to someone. Before gifting an elephant ear to someone, remember to tell them of the size.
If you want to redesign your home, try to include Alocasia wentii on your patio. This plant fits perfectly well on patios. You can grow them in white or gold-colored pots as they add to the beauty of the plant and your home.
– Do the Elephant Ears Need Care?
Elephant ear plants are very popular because of their broad leaves, so you have the responsibility of caring for the plant leaves so that they can always look fresh. You should protect your Alocasia wentii leaves from the winds as they hate a windy environment.
In terms of caring for the leaf, growing Alocasia wentii indoors is best as they are protected from winds and other elements. You should use a damp cloth to wipe the Alocasia wentii leaves occasionally so that they can remain shiny. Do not wipe them too hard or until they start dripping, else you may be exposing them to harmful pathogens.
Now you know everything that you need to know about Alocasia wentii, right? Here are some useful points that you should remember:
- Alocasia wentii is a tropical plant, so you should grow it in warm environments.
- You can propagate Alocasia wentii with the cutting and stolon.
- Use a rag to wipe the leaves of your Alocasia wentii often so that they will remain fresh and green.
- The suitable potting mix for elephant ears is well-drained. You can achieve this by mixing loam, sand, and organic matter.
- You can mix water-soluble fertilizer with water while watering your plant so that you do not need to fertilize them again.
After reading this informative article to learn about Alocasia wentii, when do you intend to start growing yours?