It’s not easy to get rid of elephant ears. It necessitates perseverance. Herbicides and physical digging up of the aggressive tubers are required for the removal of undesired elephant ear plants. Read the product label carefully before choosing a herbicide, especially if you plan to replant in the area you are spraying.
Replanting the area too soon would be a waste of effort and resources because some pesticides can linger in the soil for a very long time. Always pay attention to labels. An all-purpose herbicide is the best choice for treating elephant ear.
Spray the herbicide liberally over the plant’s aerial portions, then give it time to begin acting. As the herbicide penetrates deeper into the tuber, the foliage and stems will start to wither. Digging up the tubers should begin when the foliage has withered. Wear gloves; not only can touching elephant ear tubers cause skin irritations, but handling herbicides can result in unpleasant chemical burns.
To ensure you are removing all the tubers, dig down 2-3 feet (61-91 cm). Any little tuber that remains in the ground can grow into a new cluster of elephant ears very soon. Additionally, if any rhizomes are attempting to spread out on their own, dig out farther than the elephant ears were in the landscape. When you believe you have finished with the elephant ears, throw them away right away and refill the soil.
The effort will be made simpler by keeping a close eye on the area, using herbicide, and digging up any elephant ears that come back right away. Now you just have to wait; they might come back and you might have to repeat the entire procedure. Elephant ear control that is repeated and consistent will finally be successful.
Recall that organic methods of control are more environmentally friendly and should only be employed as a last option. It is advised that you attempt to remove the entire plant by hand before turning to the application of herbicides.
What might elephant ear plants die from?
Herbicides have a difficult time eliminating taro and elephant ears in the Xanthosoma species. Repeated applications of a 2% glyphosate solution to the leaf surfaces may be successful. All three species of elephant ears may be defeated by spraying a herbicide on the stem. Glyphosate is a nonselective systemic herbicide that is commonly administered to plant leaves. It is offered in a wide range of goods with various application guidelines. Always read and abide by label directions for optimal results.
Does elephant ear salt taste good?
The first natural mineral, Epsom salt, was found in Epsom, England. Epsom salt is commonly used as a laxative or to treat aches and pains in the bathroom, but it is also a garden additive that professional gardeners vouch for. You can use it to grow luscious, wholesome plants, flowers, and trees.
Magnesium sulfate, often known as epsom salt, is useful in the home garden since it provides the soil and fertilizer with much-needed magnesium and sulfate boosts. Plants are able to absorb more nutrients from the soil they are in thanks to the added minerals. The plant’s output consequently rises as a result.
Help late-season peppers and tomatoes grow. Late in the growing season, when their leaves start to turn yellow between the leaf veins and their fruit production slows down, tomatoes and peppers may exhibit symptoms of magnesium insufficiency. Epsom salts do appear to have certain advantages when used before they begin to deteriorate. When planting your plants, either put 1 tablespoon of Epsom salt into the soil of the planting hole for your tomatoes and peppers. When the plants begin to flower and again when the first young fruits begin to appear, foliar spraying with 1 Tbsp per gallon of water is good. Water the plants with the mixture after adding the salt to a gallon of water to hasten its dissolution. Every two weeks, you should keep adding Epsom salt to your plants.
Prevent transplant shock. Plants can experience shock and begin to perish when they are transplanted into larger pots or started indoors for eventual outdoor planting. Because the roots of the plants were probably harmed during shipping, this condition is known as transplant shock. Plants can get over transplant shock with the aid of epsom salt. If this is happening to your plants, feed them Epsom salt by sprinkling it on the soil around the base of the plant and then watering it, or by adding a little amount to the hole or planter where you will be planting the plant. Plant your plant on top of the salt after covering it with a thin layer of dirt.
maintain a green lawn Plants begin to develop yellowing leaves when their daily magnesium requirements are not met. Give your plants Epsom salt by feeding them 1 Tbsp of the mineral per 12 inches of height once a month to help prevent this typical occurrence.
Eliminate troublesome weeds Nobody enjoys pulling weeds in their gardens. Epsom salt can be used in your lawn management routine to reduce the amount of time spent weeding. Weeds can be eliminated by combining 2 cups of the mineral with 1 gallon of vinegar and some liquid dish soap. Spray the mixture on any weeds you find after putting it in a spray bottle. The weeds will vanish in no time. Avoid spraying this potent substance on plants you intend to keep because doing so will cause them to perish.
beautiful roses in bloom Roses are lovely, but they may be challenging to grow. It’s a little bit simpler with epsom salt. Epsom salt helps rose bushes grow bigger, deeper-colored blossoms that are darker in hue. Epsom salt should be added to your rose bush’s food both when it is being planted and while the blossoms are in bloom.
opulent full ferns Ferns don’t look well when they’re dull and yellow. Epsom salt aids in the development of dense, dark foliage in ferns and fern-related plants like elephant ears. To create the desired effect, mix 1 tablespoon of Epsom salt with 1 gallon of water, then mist ferns and elephant ears.
Elephant ears are disappearing, why?
Your elephant ear plant could be dying for a variety of reasons. They aren’t getting enough sunlight or water, which are the most likely causes. But other factors, such as a lack of resources, a lack of room, or the incorrect climate for growth, could also be at play.
What occurs when an elephant ear plant is touched?
Elephant ear poisoning has the following signs:
- Having mouth sores
- mouth and throat burning, increased salivation
- difficulty swallowing
- squeaky voice
- nausea and diarrhoea
- Eye discomfort, burning, and rosiness
- tongue, mouth, and eyes swelling
There could be significant enough mouth edema and blistering to make speaking and swallowing impossible.
Are the roots of elephant ears invasive?
- According to the 2014 Biosecurity Act, elephant ear vine is a category 3 restricted invasive plant.
- Nothing may be distributed, sold, or released into the environment. There may be consequences.
- You are required to take all practical and reasonable steps to reduce the biosecurity risks involved with managing the alligator weed under your control. This is referred to as a general biosecurity need (GBO).
- Each local government must have a biosecurity plan that addresses invasive species in its region on a local level. This strategy might call for taking action against elephant ear vine. It’s possible that local laws will mandate some of these steps. To learn more, get in touch with your local government.
Are elephant ears a yearly phenomenon?
The fiery pink flowers of the gomphrena ‘Fireworks’ contrast nicely with the chartreuse foliage of ‘Elena.
Some of the most striking foliage you could possibly want in a garden may be found in elephant’s ears. Massive leaves that resemble hearts can be black, purple, emerald green, chartreuse, yellow, or a combination of hues. On plants that can reach a height of more than 6 feet, the enormous leaves can measure more than 3 feet long. Impressive hues are seen in the stems as well. Hybrids that give a wide variety of options in terms of colors, sizes, and habits are the outcome of recent breeding. The Royal Hawaiian series has some of the best new ones, including “Hawaiian Punch,” “Blue Hawaii,” “Kona Coffee,” “White Lava,” and “Pineapple Princess.”
Elephant’s ears are tubers that sprout. Some form clumps, while others spread out along the ground in runners. Choose clumping varieties of elephant’s ears rather than runners, or grow runners in containers, if you are concerned about them spreading out in your yard. Whatever the case, they all enjoy sunlight, fertilizer, and water. In soil that has been improved with organic materials, such as chopped leaves, peat, or composted manure, plant tubers or transplant plants that have been cultivated in containers. It is not required to be thoroughly drained. These plants require regular feedings with Espoma Plant-tone or Dynamite Organic All-Purpose (10-2-8) because of their large appetites (5-3-3).
The Lower, Coastal, and Tropical South is home to the majority of elephant’s ears, which are perennials that return every year. In the lower Middle South, several plants are perennials. In the winter, they prefer a reasonably dry soil. If gardening further north, remove tubers before the first frost and preserve them throughout the winter in a cool, dry spot.
Establish a focal point Elephant’s ears can be grown in large numbers for a showy display of texture and color or one can be used as a specimen for a stunning accent. They do well in large pots and, if planted in submerged containers, do well in water gardens. Elephant’s ears pair well with other tropical plants like bananas, cannas, and crinums as well as with their flamboyant leaves. Try this large pot recipe for a beautiful summer combination in a container: Use the chartreuse foliage of ‘Margarita’ sweet potato vine as a spiller, the pink blooms of ‘Fanfare Orchid’ impatiens as the filler, and the chocolate leaves of ‘Puckered Up’ elephant’s ear as the thriller.
Elephant ears spread in what way?
Elephant ears can grow into enormous plants with enormous leaves. Many reproduce along their underground stolons or runners, which send up new plants. These young plants may be placed elsewhere after being removed from the parent plant. Elephant ears must be divided using sterile, cutting-edge equipment to prevent the spread of disease and damage. Elephant ear division is not required, however it can aid elderly plants that are perhaps not doing well.
Elephant ears should not be dug up in zones higher than United States Department of Agriculture zone 8, as they are not cold tolerant. You can either remove the rhizomes and store them in peat moss, packing peanuts, or paper bags in a dark, cool location, or you can pot them up and bring the container inside.
Before lifting the rhizomes, wait until the leaves have withered during the cool fall months. It might be wise to divide the plant at this time. The plant won’t be as stressed if you divide it while it isn’t actively developing as it would be if you did. Additionally, since the big leaves aren’t in the way, it’s easy to manage.
How to Plant Elephant Ear Tubers:
- When there is no longer any risk of frost and the daily temperature is above 70 degrees, plant elephant ear bulbs outside. Since they are tropical plants, elephant ears cannot withstand any frost. Only when the soil gets heated do they appear.
- Choose a spot with good, rich, moist, organic soil that receives either full or partial sun.
- Turn the dirt under to a depth of 8 inches to prepare the bed for elephant ears. After that, level it with a rake to get rid of any grass or stone clumps.
- The majority of elephant ear plants thrive on soils that have had organic matter added. You can always add compost to your planting area; it is a superb type of organic matter with an excellent pH level and good nutrition balance. If compost is not available, topdress the soil with 1-2 inches of organic mulch after planting; this mulch will break down into compost over time. Following the growth season, a soil test will reveal what soil amendments are required.
- Elephant ear bulbs should be spaced 2-4 feet apart. Plant with the growing tip facing upward.
- Make a hole that is 4 inches deeper than the soil line at the top of the bulb. Add 4 inches of soil on top.
- Before the last chance of frost has passed, tubers can be started in as little as 6 to 8 weeks. Individually plant the tubers in 6 inch pots with potting soil or seed starting medium of the highest caliber. In order for them to emerge, the soil must be heated, therefore think about using a heat mat.
Planting Potted Elephant Ear Plants in the Garden:
- Choose a place with wet, rich, organic soil that receives full or partial sun.
- Turn the soil under to a depth of 8 inches to start properly preparing the ground for growing elephant ears. After that, scrape the dirt to eliminate any grass or stone clumps.
- Once more, most elephant ear plants benefit from soils that have been modified with organic matter. Compost is a nutrient-rich, pH-optimal kind of organic matter that may be placed to your planting space whenever you like. If compost is not readily accessible where you live, topdress the soil with 1-2 inches of organic mulch after planting; this mulch will eventually decompose into compost. You can test the soil after the growing season to determine what amendments are required for the next one.
- In the garden, plants should be spaced 2-4 feet apart.
- For each plant, create a hole that is sufficiently large to hold the root ball.
- Set slightly deeper or level with the earth around it. Up to the top of the root ball, cover with soil. Your hand should firmly push the earth down, leaving a small depression to hold water around the plant.
- Water deeply until a puddle appears in the saucer you have made. As a result, there is strong root-to-soil contact and the plants become established.
- Use the plant tag to indicate its location.
Growing Elephant Ears In Your Garden
- Keep weeds under control while the plants are growing. Weeds compete with plants for water, space, and nutrients, therefore keep them in check by frequently cultivating or by using a mulch to stop the germination of their seeds.
- Mulches also support stable soil temperatures and moisture retention. Shredded leaves used as an organic mulch for annual plants give the bed a more natural appearance and, as they decompose over time, enrich the soil. Mulches should never be placed on a plant’s stems to avoid potential decay.
- During the growing season, give elephant ear plants plenty of water, especially during dry spells. The growing season requires roughly 1 inch of rain every week for plants. To determine whether you need to add water, use a rain gauge. The optimum irrigation method is a drip or trickling system that releases water at low pressure directly into the soil. To reduce disease issues, water early in the day if you want to use overhead sprinklers so the foliage has time to dry before dusk. Maintain a moist but not saturated soil.
- A mild fertilizer can be administered after new growth starts to show. To prevent burn damage, keep granular fertilizers away from the plant’s top and leaves. Use moderate amounts of a slow-release fertilizer because greater amounts could promote root rots. Every two to three weeks, a granular fertilizer is beneficial for elephant ears.
- Observe for illnesses and pests. For advice on pest management measures that are suitable for your area, contact your cooperative extension service.
- To keep the plant strong, many gardeners cut off any flower stems that sprout.
- Zone 10 is the sole robust zone for elephant ears. Dig up the bulbs with the soil and tips still attached in other places in the fall, after the first frost or when the foliage starts to die back. Allow bulbs to dry indoors, away from direct sunlight and with lots of airflow. Shake off the soil and remove the leaves when they can be readily pulled away from the bulb; do not wash. Use dry peat moss, perlite, or vermiculite to store bulbs. Store the bulbs above 50 degrees, never below.
- Elephant ears are excellent for giving your yard a tropical vibe.
- Large containers may be used for planting them.
- Large floral arrangements with elephant ear greenery have a dramatic effect.
- The minimum temperature that plants can tolerate is 50 degrees.
Common Disease Problems
The most recognizable symptom of the Dasheen Mosaic Virus is uneven light and dark patterns on leaves or distinct ring marks. Stunted growth is possible. Aphids can spread this virus. Burpee Remove diseased plants, it is advised. Eliminate aphids.
Leaf Spots: This results in tannin spots on the leaf and weakens plants. Burpee advises contacting your local Cooperative Extension Service for advice on fungicides.
Root rots are brought on by a variety of diseases. Make sure your soil has great drainage, according to Burpee. For advice, get in touch with your local Cooperative Extension Service.
Common Pest and Cultural Problems
Aphids: These disease-transmitting sucking insects that feed on the undersides of leaves might be green, red, black, or peach in appearance. On the foliage, they deposit a sticky substance that draws ants. Burpee advises attracting or introducing aphid-eating predators like lady beetles and wasps into your garden. You can also use an insecticidal soap or a powerful spray to wash them away.
Mealybugs: Mealybugs are flat, wingless insects that range in length from 1/8 to 1/4 inch. They excrete a white powder that hardens into a protective waxy shell. They accumulate in masses that resemble cotton on stems, branches, and leaves. They weaken the growth of plants by sucking the juices from the leaves and stems. Additionally, the honeydew they exude, which can potentially develop a black sooty mold, attracts ants. Burpee advises washing contaminated plant parts under the faucet and making an effort to rub the insects off. Predator insects including lacewings, ladybugs, and parasitic wasps can also control them. For advice on which pesticides to use, contact your cooperative extension service.
Root maggots: Growth is hindered and leaves wilt. These white maggots eat the roots and are parasitic. In the root, they leave behind brown tunnels. Burpee advises setting up local natural adversaries. Consult your Cooperative Extension Service for advice on which pesticides should be used before planting.
Spider mites: These minuscule insects, which resemble spiders, are approximately the size of a peppercorn. They can be yellow, brown, black, red, or black. They ingest plant liquids, sucking out chlorophyll and injecting poisons that leave the foliage with white spots. On the plant, webbing is frequently seen. They cause the leaf to stipple, dry, and become yellow. They proliferate swiftly and do best in dry environments. Burpee’s Advice Every other day, a strong spray can help control spider mites. Try using insecticidal soap or hot pepper wax. For advice on miticides, contact your local Cooperative Extension Service.
Are elephant ears able to bloom? Yes, however the vibrant foliage frequently obscures the elephant ear blossoms. In order to preserve the plant’s strength, many gardeners remove them.
Am I able to begin elephant ears inside? When planted directly in the yard, elephant ears do indeed have a tendency to sprout very late in the spring or even in the early summer, which is why many gardeners prefer to start them early indoors. About six weeks before the last frost, begin them. Use good quality potting soil and plant bulbs in pots that are at least as wide as the bulbs, one inch deep. Maintain a moist but not damp state for the soil. They may emerge faster with the aid of a heat mat.
I lost a leaf on my elephant ear plant; should I be concerned? No, elephant ears regularly lose their old leaves as they grow new ones.
Why haven’t my ears grown like elephants? They were sown four weeks ago. Elephant ear plants typically take longer to sprout because the soil needs to be extremely warm.
What varieties of elephant ears do Burpee Seeds carry? We sell two varieties of elephant ears: