Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Elephant Ear
Colocasia antiquorum 'Black Runner'

Family: Araceae (a-RAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Colocasia (kol-oh-KAY-see-uh) (Info)
Species: antiquorum (an-ti-KWOR-um) (Info)
Cultivar: Black Runner

One vendor has this plant for sale.

19 members have or want this plant for trade.

Ponds and Aquatics
Tropicals and Tender Perennials

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)
4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

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)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade

Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:
Pale Yellow

Bloom Time:
Blooms all year

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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There are a total of 11 photos.
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5 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive stella On Apr 5, 2010, stella from Raleigh, NC (Zone 7a) wrote:

Black Runner is great for its color and its ruffled leaf edges...very artistic.

Positive jlj072174 On Jul 28, 2009, jlj072174 from Raleigh, NC (Zone 8a) wrote:

I purchased a couple of these last year and planted them around my fish pond. They did great there last year; however, this year, they came back a little smaller (only getting about 18 inches tall. I seem to recall them being much taller last year (3' or so). They are sending up runners all around the area though. So far, I'm pleased with it.

Positive Toxicodendron On Jun 9, 2006, Toxicodendron from Piedmont, MO (Zone 6a) wrote:

'Black Runner' overwintered here in zone 6 with about 6 inches of mulch. Slow to emerge in late spring, though, so mark the spot if you try this.
Our temps got down to zero at one point, but other than that, it was a mild winter here.

Positive lbkeown On Jan 9, 2006, lbkeown from Shelbyville, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

Great. So much fun. Grows fast. Need lots of water.

Positive henryr10 On Sep 11, 2004, henryr10 from Cincinnati, OH (Zone 6b) wrote:

My favorite of the 'Black' EE's.

Compared to 'Black Magic' or 'Wonder' ,
Colocasia esculenta 'Black Runner' has a ruffled wavy edge.
This gives it a fuller more interesting appearance in my opinion.

Of course there is also the running for which it is named.
'Black Magic' is a clumper or pupper.
Our 'Runners' have only pupped a few times but always have at least 4 runners per plant going.
This running starts as young as a 3 leaf plant.

These runners can be allowed to finish into a new plant or cut into segments, w/ a node or two per piece, and started as cuttings.
Just push the segment horizontally into moist soil, bag and stand back.
A new plant should sprout within a week of two.

One is all you need.
By the end of season you'll have dozens.


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

Sparkman, Arkansas
Brooksville, Florida (2 reports)
Clearwater, Florida
Delray Beach, Florida
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Miami, Florida
Port Charlotte, Florida
West Palm Beach, Florida
Bonnyman, Kentucky
Gonzales, Louisiana
Piedmont, Missouri
Clemmons, North Carolina
Elizabeth City, North Carolina
Ellenboro, North Carolina
Emerald Isle, North Carolina
Raleigh, North Carolina (2 reports)
Cincinnati, Ohio
Vieques, Puerto Rico
Shelbyville, Tennessee
Desoto, Texas

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