June is a fun time of year! Different crinum and rain lilies continue to pop into bloom, but the staples that keep texture and color all the time right now are our caladiums. I've come to appreciate their function and form and what it brings to our garden. We're highlighting this week a pink selection called 'Carolyn Whorton'. Whether in pots, borders, or circling a tree, the striking pinks and reds are a beautiful addition to the garden.
Caladium is often called "Angel Wings" or in other areas they have been called "Elephant Ears". You understand why they are called these the moment you look at them. Caladiums are actually grown for their foliage or leaves instead of their blooms. The beautiful heart-shaped leaves in varying colors create a great accent to your garden whether you are using them as a landscape focus or for pops of color around your garden or even in containers. Caladium mix well with other plants as they add color and texture to your garden. These five (5) tubers are considered JUMBO size. They are 2 1/2" - 3 1/2" in diameter. Jumbo size bulbs have lots of "eyes" and each eye produces a leaf. The more eyes equals the more leaves.
The 'Carolyn Whorton' Caladium is considered a fancy-leaf variety which simply means that the stem will grow 12-30 inches long before producing its large, heart-shaped leaf. The Carolyn Whorton is considered a pink caladium because its dark green leaves have large bright pink blotches all over the them but the veins are a deeper pink.
Caladium tubers are fun to plant because they don't care how you plant them. You can plant them upside down (mainly because it is a little hard to tell the top from the bottom on a large tuber.) Plant with 1/2 - 2 inches of soil above the bulb and about 8-12 inches apart. When you first plant you caladium tuber, water occasionally. They will rot if given too much water. Once the leaves begin to appear be sure to give it more water. Every couple of days is great. It is best to water early in the morning or late evening so that the sun won't burn the fragile leaves.