The Alocasia plant is part of the Arum family of herbs originating in Southeast Asia. It was first seen in homes as a houseplant in the 1950s in the US. The arrow-shaped foliate is very large and has significant white veining.
That is one of its biggest draws since it doesn’t produce a lot of blooms. There are 80 known varieties of the Alocasia plant, and they are separated into two distinct categories; Polly and Amazonica. The Polly type is much smaller, which is likely why many homeowners choose it over Amazonica.
When these plants are in an ideal environment and reach maturity, they will often bloom. We’ll cover the meaning of the Alocasia flower, pollination, and if it’s toxic.
Alocasia Flower Meaning
The Alocasia plant often is referred to as ‘the tree that grows up to the heavens. Often thought of as a version of Jack and the Beanstalk in Eastern and Western countries.
Alocasia Flower Meaning: When opportunities come up, seize them. Even if risky.
Details about the Alocasia Plant
The Alocasia plant is also known by several other names, including The Kris Plant, Elephant Ear, and African Mask.
The Amazonica is believed to be the very first variety to appear in homes, but the Polly is the one that seems to thrive the best. The Polly variety also tends to be smaller in size.
Exotic plants like Alocasia plant present a challenge to people looking to grow them in their homes. One of the primary reasons Alocasia is so difficult to produce a bloom (flower) is that it needs particular conditions.
To help you learn more about the Alocasia flower, we included some essential details. Below we will discuss a short list of the vital information you need; light, soil, fertilizer, temperature, humidity, and water.
Like all living plants, the Alocasia needs plenty of bright sunlight. However, it should be indirect light.
No need to place it in front of an open window; just expose it to plenty of light in the room. The more sunlight it is exposed to, the less stress it will feel. The less stress the Alocasia plant feels, the more likely you will be rewarded with its beautiful flower.
Soil condition is one of the most critical items that this houseplant needs to thrive. This means you must be sure that you are providing the best quality soil condition.
One of the best soil compositions for the Alocasia plant is equal parts of perlite, sand, and peat moss. The perlite and sand help to provide aeration and water drainage to prevent damage to its root system.
As we just mentioned, the soil condition is paramount to providing the optimum growing condition for your Alocasia plant.
To help you do this, it is important to add the right amount of fertilizer to bring the ph level of the soil where it needs to be to keep the Alocasia plant happy. You should use a high phosphorus content fertilizer, such as monopotassium phosphate (MKP).
The climate is very important to help provide a sufficient growing environment for the Alocasia plant in your home.
Since it is a tropical plant, you will need to keep the temperature in the room that it lives in at a consistent temperature; it will thrive the most and is likely to produce a beautiful Alocasia flower if you keep the temperature in the room between 65 – 85 degrees F.
As previously mentioned, the Alocasia Plant is tropical, and the more humidity in its environment, the happier it will be. This will also help it to feel less stressed, and that will help provide an optimum condition and lead to beautiful flowers and foliage.
It prefers a consistent humidity level between 50 and 60 percent. You should invest in a moisture meter and humidifier to monitor it.
The amount of water is also very important, and it can be a bit tricky. You want to be sure that you are watering it enough, but remember, too much water can lead to root rot, which is detrimental to your Alocasia plant.
If the soil is optimum and draining correctly, you should only add more water when you see the top few inches of the soil is dry. Using distilled water, add only enough to dampen but not create pooling water on the surface.
Alocasia Flower Pollination
The Alocasia plant is not considered a self-pollinator; therefore, you must use a manual pollination technique to get your plant to reproduce.
The male and female parts of the plant are in two different parts of the flower. The male and female aspects of the plant are found in the spathe.
The female part of the spathe or spadix is located in the upper half, and the male part is in the spadix’s upper part.
Since it is not self-pollinating, you must extract a small amount of the pistol (male) and mix it with a small amount of pollen. This pollen mixture is then introduced to the female portion of the flower.
Using this method, you can also create different hybrid Alocasia plants by mixing pistols from another variety.
There are several other methods for pollinating the Alocasia plant; the most popular is to make a small cut into the plant just below the bottom of the spathe and expose the pistol.
You can remove a small amount of the pistol using a cotton swab. Then you put the pistol into a small amount of pollen, introduce the mixture to the female part of the spathe, and let nature do the rest.
Are Alocasia Flowers Toxic to Cats?
According to ASPCA, the Alocasia plant is highly toxic to animals, including cats. For this reason, you should never have this type of plant in a space your cat would have complete access. It is believed to be due to a specific compound; isolates of calcium oxalates.
While it is known that this toxic compound is found in the leaves and stem, it would make sense that the flower is also toxic to cats and other animals.
80 varieties of Alocasia plant – PDF