I know it is a bit early to be discussing this but when there is an eminent first frost, there is a sudden rush to get tender plants into greenhouses and basements and in the rush, my caladiums are sometimes overlooked.
Do you store your caladiums successfully over the winter? Please share your secret to success. Thanks!
I don't grow them anymore, unless gifted, but had good success storing them in sand or saw dust. They should be cleaned and treated with a fungicide first. I usually soak them for an hour as part of the cleaning process to make sure there are no insects being harbored.
They can be stored at any temp above freezing. The biggest problem I've had is that some always rot. You can try storing them in mesh bags and sawdust. I know some people store bulbs in perlite but that gets expensive if you have a lot. I've considered storing bulbs in dry cypress mulch but haven't tried it.
I've stored mine bare bulb in plastic pots (soil washed off and allowed to dry outdoors like Maypop suggested) and also kept them in the same container they are in with very good success. They are all kept in the basement where it can be cool or toasty warm depending on outdoor weather and time of day (I run about 75 shop lights in winter). The ones that were kept in the same potting mix are watered lightly about once a week under lights and will eventually start to grow again. The bare bulbs in plastic pots are stored on the top shelf (six feet high) and are inspected every 3 weeks or more and when they start to sprout in early spring then they are ready for fresh potting mix, lights, and water.
I use that soil mix you buy for cactus plants and I use those aluminum trays about 3-4" deep like you use on a steam table. I get them at Costco. Put a layer of dirt, then the bulbs, then fill up with more dirt. Put them on a shelf in the garage and they do well. I end up with about 4 trays and I stack different directions to make one stack. About every month I water them just a little and stack them back up. I only do this for the really unusual ones , like those black and reds. Otherwise it is too much trouble.