Alocasias are not difficult to find, and they are worth looking for if you want a spectacular specimen plant. The erect, thick stems of Alocasia sanderiana carry arrow-shaped leaves 12-16in/30-40cm long and 6in/15cm wide.
They are metallic silver-green, broken by yellowish gray veining, with scalloped edges and a thin white margin; the undersides have a purplish tinge. The rather insignificant petalless flowers are held on a spadix within a typical arumlike spathe.
This attention-grabbing plant is, unfortunately, not really happy in normal room conditions and should be returned to a greenhouse to recuperate after a few months.
A rest period is essential in winter, during which the soil should be allowed to become almost dry between waterings, and feeding can cease completely.
HEIGHT To 30in/76cm with a similar spread.
POTTING MIX Soil-based, with added peat moss or leaf mold.
REPOTTING Annually in spring.
PROPAGATION In spring, by division; by potting up the suckers; or by taking cuttings of the rhizomes.
KEEPING PLANTS Equally good as a solitary specimen plant or as part of a group of houseplants.
PLANT CARE ALOCASLA SANDER1ANA Araceae
- Bright light preferred; avoid direct sunlight in summer.
- Minimum of 65°F/18°C in winter; warm room temperature at other times, preferably above 70°F/21°C.
- Keep the soil moist during the active growth period; reduce watering in winter.
- Humidity is appreciated; so mist the leaves frequently, and stand the plant on moist pebbles.
- Feed every 2 weeks with a weak liquid fertilizer.