The colored leaf as a houseplant

The colored leaf as a houseplant

The colored leaf is not hardy

The genus Caladium originally comes from tropical regions in Central and South America. Although the plant sheds all leaves towards the end of each vegetation period and only overwinters in the underground tuber, the plant cannot tolerate permanent temperatures of well below 10 degrees Celsius. Therefore, due to the large-leaved elephant ear, it can at best be set up seasonally as a container plant. In the house, on the other hand, the lifespan of the attractive and sometimes multicolored leaves can be extended under suitable conditions before the caladias take a break at room temperature.

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The perfect location in the house

As a houseplant, a Kaladie is only grateful for a place directly at the window under certain circumstances. After all, the colored leaf can withstand a little morning or evening sun, but similar to the dragon tree, it should not be given too much direct sunlight. Basically, however, the colored leaf should rather be in a warm room or near the heater, as it can grow optimally at temperatures between 18 and 25 degrees Celsius. In winter, the dormant tubers are stored in a cooler room at around 12 to 15 degrees Celsius. To prevent them from going moldy, they can be placed in dry peat. In the spring, temperatures of at least 21 degrees Celsius are required for new growth.

Maintain the colored leaf optimally as a houseplant

So that the preferences of these exotic tropical plants are optimally fulfilled, the planter should be filled with a rather lime-poor substrate with a high proportion of peat. It is also beneficial to plant health if the leaves are occasionally sprayed with some stale, room-warm rainwater. Please also note the following care tips for particularly magnificent and large leaves on this valued ornamental foliage plant:

  • Apply some liquid fertilizer about every 2 weeks during the summer
  • As the leaves wilt before winter, gradually reduce the watering
  • Evenly high temperatures and high humidity promote leaf growth


When cultivated as a houseplant or in a greenhouse, the colored leaf rarely forms inflorescences that look like the flowers of a calla. However, offshoots can be obtained from the small nodules on the main tuber before it is placed in a freshly prepared planter for new growth.

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