Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Elephant Ear, Taro
Colocasia esculenta 'Ruffles'

Family: Araceae (a-RAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Colocasia (kol-oh-KAY-see-uh) (Info)
Species: esculenta (es-kew-LEN-tuh) (Info)
Cultivar: Ruffles
Additional cultivar information: (aka Ruffled Leaf)

5 members have or want this plant for trade.

Ponds and Aquatics
Tropicals and Tender Perennials

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade

All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:
Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:
Unknown - Tell us

Grown for foliage

Other details:
Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings
Very high moisture needs; suitable for bogs and water gardens

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Seed Collecting:
N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

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By sweezel
Thumbnail #1 of Colocasia esculenta by sweezel

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Thumbnail #2 of Colocasia esculenta by mininissandog

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Thumbnail #3 of Colocasia esculenta by kudrick


3 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive Ladyborg On Jul 11, 2006, Ladyborg from Magnolia, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

This is the greatest attraction in my garden. My neighbors (who see them often) can't seem to keep from commenting on their size and beauty, every single time they come by. They add a tropical and an almost architectural aspect to my flowerbeds. Easy to care for, tends to droop by end of a hot day (mid-90's +) if not watered well. (In my humid and super hot zone 8B garden). I use it sparingly for dramatic effect - just 1 bulb at edge of a bed or an inner corner of an L-shaped bed, in order to attract the eye and anchor the beds. Awesome and fast grower.

Positive Suze_ On Jan 20, 2006, Suze_ from (Zone 7b) wrote:

This spectacular form of the hardy elephant ear comes to us from a garden in Anniston, Alabama, where it was "discovered" by SPEPS member Hayes Jackson. We can attest that this clumper has both phenomenal vigor as well as hardiness. Each 3' long leaf has incredibly scalloped edges that sets it apart from typical C. esculenta. In growth habit, it performs here as a clumper, unlike the more stoloniferous forms. Colocasia 'Ruffles' has also multiplied faster than any elephant ear we have grown, with clumps multiplying from 1 to 100 divisions in 12-24 months.

Positive shofiregirl On Sep 8, 2005, shofiregirl from Shoshoni, WY wrote:

i tried to go this outdoors but it didn't grow. i put in a pot as a indoor plant and it grows rapidly. you can almost watch it grow. it does seem to need alot of water. it will follow the light and likes to be in the window. its a big houseplant but really beautiful


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Anniston, Alabama
Saint Petersburg, Florida
Santa Rosa Beach, Florida
Colbert, Georgia
Davenport, Iowa
Fallston, Maryland
Raleigh, North Carolina
Cincinnati, Ohio
Vieques, Puerto Rico
Sumter, South Carolina
Fort Worth, Texas
Houston, Texas
Kalama, Washington
Shoshoni, Wyoming

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