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Colocasias are commonly called elephant ears or taro. The huge leaves bring a dramatic, tropical flair to the garden and elephant ears lend themselves easily to many garden situations. As a pot plant, elephant ears add height and coarse texture to a mixed planter. However, the open garden really allows elephant ears to realize their full potential. The bold, dramatic plants provide an excellent backdrop for other plants or draw attention as a striking focal point.
Elephant ears are vigorous and easy to grow. The key to growing big plants is water, nutrients, and warmth. Colocasias are heavy feeders and respond favorably to a rich, organic soil. Regular applications of water soluble fertilizer or a generous side dressing of time release fertilizer will keep the plants well nourished. Elephant ears are tropical plants and enjoy ample moisture. Burned leaf edges are an indication of a lack of water. Colocasias are a staple feature in water gardens, where they are normally called taros. Taros thrive in the shallow marginal areas of a pond. Elephant ears grow well in sun or light shade, but full sun brings out the most vibrant colors.