year round tropical weather question

Plano, TX

if you live somewhere that is tropical all year do the plants just continue without going domant? if so can i bring tropical plants into a warm and humid atrium and have them continue all year long? caladium is what i had in mind- i tried to save the bulbs it was not succesful so i wonder if i can bring the potted caladiums inside before weather cools and keep them going till next spring

noonamah, Australia

It depends on the plants, some of them come from climates which have a (winter) dry season and have evolved to be dormant as part of their cycle. They'll often respond to day length. Nearer the equator there's less change between the longest and shortest day. But the answer is, "some will and some won't".

My caladiums said "Goodnight" a while ago. July is our coldest month but so far our average daily minimum temperature has been 20.2C (68.4F) and maximum 32.6C (90.7F). But the caladiums still decided to have a rest.

My Amorphophallus titanum, which is ultra tropical, is still growing as if there's no tomorrow. The Amorphophallus paeoniifolius (and bulbifer) turned in a few weeks back.

The Anchomanes is supposed to go dormant but it's not. You'll find some unexpected results.

Plano, TX

interesting and helpful-thanks
90 in your coldest month? lowest average 68--this is out of the norm? what will be the norm when winter really arrives?

noonamah, Australia

I'm inland from the coast, so it's warmer daytime and cooler night time than what it is on the coast. The absolute coldest here is about 8C (46.4F) to 10C (50.0F), but that doesn't happen every winter. The average minimum during July is normally about 17.9C (64.2F).

By the way, I just noticed some of the Caladiums have come out, but not all of them

Marine Parade, Singapore

Hi, caladiums grow all the year round here. There is hardly any seasonal variation in temperature near the equator.

Plano, TX

well i just wonder if my atrium--which gets sun-- but of course our winter sun is not as powerful --but can get nice and humid and warm because it is enclosed--if that could work like a tropic zone year round--

Marine Parade, Singapore

Perhaps, but I think hours of daylight might also be a factor. That might trigger plants going into a dormant cycle. There's only one way to find out!

Mérida, Yucatán, Mexico(Zone 11)

There are seasons here even though the temp does not vary much, in general you can say we have 2 seasons wet and dry. I'm not at the equator and we go from about 11 hours of sunlight to around 13 hours, winter to summer. Plants and trees do notice it and there are some that lose their leaves or only bloom at certain times. Others, don't seem to notice and go on. Also there are the in between ones like plumeria. Plumeria here don't lose all their leaves but they do lose some of them and the blooms are few for several months in the winter. Then they put out new leaves and start blooming again but the largest number of blooms is in May which is the end of our dry season, the rest of the time there are less. Trees like Flamboyan or Royal Poinciana do lose all their leaves in the winter. Some trees fruit all year like some citrus and palms and others have a distinct season like mango.

noonamah, Australia

Again, it all depends. Some will respond to temperature, some to day length. What you could do is install grow lights to lengthen the day during your winter. As far as strength of sun goes, many tropicals are understorey plants used to low light, especially during the wet season when not only the canopy shades them but also the heavy cloud cover. But make sure you install fans to get good air circulation.

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