About seven species of Caladium
are native to tropical America.
They are small herbaceous plants of the forest understory ranging from about
nine to thirty-six inches tall. Caladium
bicolor is reported to be the main parent of modern hybrids. The wild plant
is variable but often has white and/or pink markings on green leaves. Modern
hybrids have leaves that are mostly white, pink or red with small amount of
green. Flower spikes are inconspicuous under or among the colorful leaves. In
the tropics, they die down in response to the dry season.
Plants can be seen in the lawn between buildings 1 and 39.
A herbaceous plant with leaves that grow to about twelve inches tall.
Light: part sun to shade
Water: well-drained soil, some drought tolerance
Soil: adaptable provided the soil drains well
Caladiums are useful for brightening a shady spot in the
garden. They grow best where the soil is moist in the summer growing season and
dry during the winter while the plant is dormant. In Jacksonville, caladiums die to the ground in late
fall and generally resprout the following spring.
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