colocasia esculenta and black magic.

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The Codfather
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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by The Codfather » Mon May 16, 2011 5:17 pm

How do you store kris ?
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Yorkshire Kris
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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by Yorkshire Kris » Mon May 16, 2011 5:22 pm

Like this. In a 6 by 4foot greenhouse with a 1kw heater keeping min temp of 8degrees.
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The Codfather
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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by The Codfather » Mon May 16, 2011 5:25 pm

Ahhh, so you just lifted them and potted them.......did that stay at 8C ????? what did you run in that ??????
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Yorkshire Kris
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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by Yorkshire Kris » Mon May 16, 2011 5:32 pm

Yeah alot remained potted all last summer and winter to bulk them out a bit. I've done a bit of propgation recently see here

http://www.hardytropicals.co.uk/forum/v ... 19&t=11377

I did plant out my Jacks Giants and then lifted and potted up for winter.

Running costs???? £100-£250 for October to May? I don't know really. All I know is that i'm not allowed many plants in the house so this is the comprimise :lol:


Scott Radford
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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by Scott Radford » Mon May 16, 2011 8:18 pm

Hello again all

Good to see we're sharing our overwintering strategy as that's where people tend to fall down.

as for the question what do i do with mine. The simple as the more precious the plant the warmer it stays, hence last winter my ones I got from the USA spent it in a mini greenhouse that was sat where my heated propagator now sits in my hallway in the house.

The rest are removed from the pond into the greenhouse to dry out for winter starting late September. This is because we want them to dry out, so there's no point leaving it until last minute when all the heat of the days are gone, otherwise it won't happen.

This can be done, but in such cases then they will need repotting into fresh DRY compost. I use peat free compost, which I get dry by spreading out in trays on the greenhouse floor over summer. Once the compost is completely dry then it is rebagged and stored in the loft so it can't get damp. This compost is then used for repotting. There's no other way as the stuff will stay damp in the bag all summer. I left some cooking in my car for weeks and it made no difference the moisture won't escape from the bag.

The good thing about peat free compost is once dry it can be reconstituted into its original state by soaking. Try the same with peat based compost and it won't happen - once that's bone dry it's irreversible.

Once the dried out/repotted Colocasias are ready to go into winter then the choice comes. As Kris does heat them to 8C and not even Black magic goes into dormancy. Water them sparingly and only from the bottom though and they will be fine. Otherwise let them go bone dry and stay that way, removing the leaves as they wilt to avoid rot. Then they eventually sink back into a single stem which sits out the winter poised to go again. It's at this point if you want you can remove the bulb from the pot and clear all the fleshy material off (roots included) give it a dusting of antifungus powder, then store dry, such as you do dahlias, in a frost free ventilated area.

If it gets too cold this last stem will disappear too and can be removed completely again to avoid rot. The Colocasia will then sit the winter out. As spring sunshine warms them again the bulbs show signs of life, only then should watering recommence and again at first only from below.

As discussed before regrowth in spring can be brought forward many weeks by using bottom heat too, it's never failed for me.
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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by Scott Radford » Mon May 16, 2011 8:28 pm

I have a butane gas heater to do my warming, ventilation obviously a must in such a case due to condensation, but the costs are up font and known in advance.

I have some mega tropical and rare Typhonodorum lindlyanum from Madagascar to house this time. They will need heated water to sit in too.

If I could redesign my house from scratch I would do it such that my lean-to greenhouse sits along my south facing back wall. Then when my bathwater left the bath each night (I do enjoy REALLY HOT baths) it would subsequently disappear through a lagged pipe into the base of my greenhouse and pool beneath the beds/shallow water baths the plants sit in and provide the underheat for the night time. The bricks on the south facing wall would also act as a heat sink and give back their heat overnight, lifting the temperature inside after sunny days by several degrees.

If I ever get to move from my current house that is the design it will have to have the potential to accommodate. Until then I am seriously considering the heating issue as I have about 5 months to sort it for around 40 plants!!
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Rick1965
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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by Rick1965 » Tue May 17, 2011 7:25 pm

Some really useful info, thanks all.


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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by Ian Cooke » Thu May 19, 2011 6:30 pm

Scott Radford wrote: The good thing about peat free compost is once dry it can be reconstituted into its original state by soaking. Try the same with peat based compost and it won't happen - once that's bone dry it's irreversible.
I don't agree with this. Dried peat and peat-based composts can be rehydrated but they do need sufficient water to do so. After all when we used to buy bales of peat, this was dried and compressed. We used to split the bale and then leave a hose running into it until it was all rehydrated.

With potted plants in peat based composts, they need thoroughly soaking. If the compost has shrunk from the sides of the pot, the water may just run through. Simply soak in a bucket of water. You can actually add a small quantity of washing up liquid to act as a wetting agent which will speed up the process.

The greater issue is whether plants should be totally dried out overwinter. Plants such cannas, dahlias, gingers, colocasias and so on should be kept just moist to keep roots from dessication. I would suggest that plants are more often lost through dehydration rather than low temperatures. (In most winters!)


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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by GoggleboxUK » Thu May 19, 2011 6:52 pm

If you host your pics and link to them there's no need to resize Scott.

;)
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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by Dave Brown » Thu May 19, 2011 8:03 pm

Ian Cooke wrote: The greater issue is whether plants should be totally dried out overwinter. Plants such cannas, dahlias, gingers, colocasias and so on should be kept just moist to keep roots from dessication. I would suggest that plants are more often lost through dehydration rather than low temperatures. (In most winters!)
I agree with your comments on peat, and I add 10% loam to mp compost as a moisture stabilizer It seem to stop it completely drying out :wink:

On the point of drying out, many of the plants have tuber/rhizomes to combat desication in the dry season. The Common Taro for instance has a 10 month growth season followed by 2 months dry in which the top dies off. Ensete has between a 2 and 8 month dry season, but is so useful as a food crop as it can survive complete failure of the wet season over a couple of years.

All we are doing is mimicing that dry season. Where much of the litrature seems to be wrong is that they say temps below xx induce dormancy, when it is in fact the dryness causing it not temps. Colocasia at 2C in wet soil won't go dormant, it will just rot :roll:
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Scott Radford
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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by Scott Radford » Thu May 19, 2011 9:10 pm

[/quote]
I don't agree with this. Dried peat and peat-based composts can be rehydrated but they do need sufficient water to do so. After all when we used to buy bales of peat, this was dried and compressed. We used to split the bale and then leave a hose running into it until it was all rehydrated.

Ok Ian we'll agree to disagree then. icon_thumleft I can find info searching on the net that says both peat and peat free can and can't be rehydrated easily, so as it clearly depends on the individual findings of each author, thus we'll stick to what we do. I'm happy anyway that I'm not contributing to the loss of our peat bogs
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Scott Radford
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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by Scott Radford » Thu May 19, 2011 9:11 pm

Dave Brown wrote:
Ian Cooke wrote: The greater issue is whether plants should be totally dried out overwinter. Plants such cannas, dahlias, gingers, colocasias and so on should be kept just moist to keep roots from dessication. I would suggest that plants are more often lost through dehydration rather than low temperatures. (In most winters!)
I agree with your comments on peat, and I add 10% loam to mp compost as a moisture stabilizer It seem to stop it completely drying out :wink:

On the point of drying out, many of the plants have tuber/rhizomes to combat desication in the dry season. The Common Taro for instance has a 10 month growth season followed by 2 months dry in which the top dies off. Ensete has between a 2 and 8 month dry season, but is so useful as a food crop as it can survive complete failure of the wet season over a couple of years.

All we are doing is mimicing that dry season. Where much of the litrature seems to be wrong is that they say temps below xx induce dormancy, when it is in fact the dryness causing it not temps. Colocasia at 2C in wet soil won't go dormant, it will just rot :roll:
Ok Ian we'll agree to disagree then. icon_thumleft I can find info searching on the net that says both peat and peat free can and can't be rehydrated easily, so as it clearly depends on the individual findings of each author, thus we'll stick to what we do. I'm happy anyway that I'm not contributing to the loss of our peat bogs
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Scott


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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by Scott Radford » Fri Jun 10, 2011 7:32 pm

sorry for the late reply CodFather

I store them dryish if I can, ie cease saturation as they dry out, water only from the bottom for a few minutes only at a time by standing the pot in e.g. a tray of water.

This lets the roots still get moisture, so avoid them drying out too. Watering though should only be done when the plant looks like it needs some i.e. the leaves start to look like they're wilting.

I had two problems last year though in that the roof of the greenhouse leaked then the heating failed while I was away - wet and freezing = goodbye to those there

I kept ele paio in the conservatory and it seemed ok when a new shoot came this spring - but that flattered to deceive, went and it is dead it seems :(

But it's not the hardest to get hold of, some of my USA ones are, hence all is not lost there. My US ones were in my hallway all winter, so didn't dry out and thus were kept moistened as they still had the single stem they shrunk back to. The warmth of the hallway meant they were fine with this and the increased sunlight (the window faces east so sunny first thing in the morning) in spring encouraged the leaves to start emerging. The heat mat speeded this up.

Or if stored a bit cooler keep to the watering scheme above and then once signs of growth come again in spring it's easy to encourage roots with water and heat from below

p.s. if anyone has an ele paio I can swap for or buy then I'd be only to glad to hear from you
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ourarka
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Re: colocasia esculenta and black magic.

Post by ourarka » Wed Mar 19, 2014 9:48 pm

This is a really great thread, and one I wish I'd come across before. If anyone is still 'monitoring' it I was just wondering about the planting substrate for pond dwelling colocasias. It has been stated 'fill the pot with gravel' and put it in the pond. Does this mean normal compost and topped with gravel to weight it down, or planted JUST in gravel?


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