The alien of houseplants, Alocasia Polly is worldly popular with special foliage. This houseplant has a dark green waxy leaves with colored lines. This plant is not considered as beginner plant because it need more care than other houseplants to thrive indoor.
What is Alocasia Polly?
Alocasia Polly is a fairly popular artistic houseplant. It is also known as African Mask Plant and Amazonia Elephant Ear.
This plant cherish a blazing and muggy environment in the house and office.
It’s dark green leaves are moulded as an arrow head with precise silvery green veins. The leaves can be delicate to sunburn so it’s best to keep it slightly away from window or behind light curtains. Choose soil that is well draining and little bit moist, which will help in maintaining humidity. Temperature should be above 60°F, colder will make it wrinkly.
However this plant is toxic for both human as well animals.
It’s better to keep it away from small children and pets.
Facts about Alocasia Polly:
Here are some facts about Alocasia Polly:
- Biological Name: Alocasia Amazonica
- Common Name: Alocasia Polly, Elephant Ear and African Mask.
- Plant type: Perennial
- Sun explosure: partial sun
- Soil type: spongy or loam
- Mature size: 4 feet tall with 20 inches long leaves
- Soil pH: acid, neutral
- Season of interest: Spring and summer
- Water needs: Average
- Feature: Showy, evergreen and everlasting.
How to care for an Alocasia Polly?
Alocasia Polly is a tropical plant, it’s not an easy task to take care of it, it might be a challenge for beginners. However, when you learn to take care of this tropical plant you will be able to take care of other advanced plants as well.
Here are some tips and tricks which can help a person to take care of Alocasia Polly successfully.
- Light requirement
Alocasia Polly is susceptible to over and underwatering in order to keep it nourishing and healthy, a moderate amount of water is crucial.
Amazonica is a tropical plant which means it needs quite a bit of moisture.
Alocasia Polly have thick or wide stem, which they use to store moisture. It means they don’t need to relay on soil moisture. When you water your houseplant for the very first time, lift up your plant and feel its weight. After 2 weeks lift your plant again and feel the difference, your plant will be really light. Now you will know how light your plant is when it needs water. Water when top 2-3 inches of soil completely dry. Water your Alocasia Polly when soil is completely dry, because it is sensitive to overwatering, as it stores water or moisture in its thick stem. It has thick stem but soft roots so it’s best to water tropical plant once or twice a week, or when soil completely dry to prevent any problem.
Alocasia Polly is hybrid plant, so it will not cherish low temperature at all to flourish. It needs temperature ranging between 18-27 °C , and 60-80 °F.
Make sure temperature should not drop below 60 degrees Fahrenheit to keep your plant happy and foliage present. Alocasia Polly will go into complete dormancy if exposed to cold temperature and foliage can die to the ground.
High humidity is required for Alocasia to flourish and survive. To nourish your Alocasia Polly, humidity level must be 60% to 70% especially in the summer, hot and dry condition.
High humidity level is compulsory for quality growth. Place your plant pot on a pebble tray half filled with water, which will help to moist your houseplant. Humidity also helps to keep pest away from Polly plant.
Like other houseplants, Alocasia Polly doesn’t like the sun as much. It should be kept in bright area but not exposed to direct light. Mature leaves will tolerate this bright or indirect light for a while, but it will burn new leaves and dry them out.
Alocasia Polly needs indirect bright light to flourish indoor, so place you houseplant where it won’t exposed to sun directly. It’s crucial to protect the artistic plant from direct sunlight to prevent flaming the leaves. Also avoid to put houseplant in constant shade or in dark rooms. Because growth will slow down and you will lose spirited or vibrant leaves.
So it’s best to protect the Elephant Ear’s behind the sheet curtains.
Alocasia Polly is a gorgeous artistic houseplant, but unfortunately it is extremely poisonous or toxic to humans and pets especially cats dogs. It’s toxic when ingest so keep it away from small children and pets. Ingestion will cause:
- Oral irritation
- Excessive drooling
- Pain, swelling of mouth and lips
- Difficulty in swallowing
Fertilizing elephant ear’s are essential to their healthy growth. Alocasia Polly are heavy feeders, they needs to be fertilize 1-2 weeks during it’s growing period.
Fertilize your houseplant not just for rapid growth but also to reach it’s potential size. Whenever you water your hybrid plant, add little water soluble fertilizer to keep it revive.
If you notice that plant leaves are appear burnt, it means that you are adding too much fertilizer. Flush out your container or pot with clean water and cut back with your fertilizer routine.
Houseplant doesn’t need frequent fertilization in winter or cold season, and no fertilization is required in the first year after purchase.
Alocasia Polly grows under slightly confined condition, but eventually it needs to be transplanted to a new pot to refill or replenish it’s soil. Because it needs repotting every or two years. Indication that houseplant needs repotting include visible roots on the surface of the soil or roots growing out of the drainage hole of the pot. If roots are more than soil then your houseplant requires to be repotting, before repotting choose a container which is 2 inches larger than the original one.
Newly potted houseplant wouldn’t need any fertilizer for several months due to the heavy fresh soil. Alocasia Polly should be potted at the same depth as they were in original, in repotting soil level should be 1 inches below the edge of the pot or container.
Best performance and healthiest growth depends on soil, so it’s important what kind of soil you are using for your houseplant. Well draining soil is the best choice. It is crucial for Alocasia Polly to be planted in soil that will hold the sufficient amount of water while allowing excessive water fully drain.
Heavy soil has propensity to keep so much moisture, which can cause rot problem and even die your plant. A friable or loamy soil with perlite is appreciable option, which can help the roots to grow.
Over the past years, African Mask plant have become one of the most popular houseplant. These plants are easy to propagate. As propagating Alocasia Polly goes, the best method is rhizome division. Dividing artistic plant in to smaller segment is done due to the rhizomatous nature of the root. This division is really simple and will turn in multiple new plants.
The main reason why you choose to propagate your Amazonica, because it becoming too big for space. Cutting houseplant can also stop it from becoming leggy or lunky.
You might also propagate houseplant when you notice that parts of the plants starting die, if you unable to thrive your plant then propagating the healthy parts will save your artistic houseplant.
How to propagate houseplant by rhizome division: o
Carefully remove the arrow shaped leaf from pot o
Flush out the soil from container, and divide the rhizome in to multiple pieces.
- Make sure to let the freshly cut rhizomes before repotting.
- Make sure that the top part of rhizome is planted above the soil.
Water propagation is another way to produce more Alocasia Polly or African Mask plant.
It can be fun way to propagate when you see the new roots forming:
- Cut off the healthy leaf and stem
- Put the stem in water
- Keep cutting in bright or indirect sunlight 4.
Transplant the plant when roots are 1-2 inches long
Ideal size of Alocasia Polly:
Alocasia Polly can grow up to 3 feet high and 3 feet wide. The speed of growth of this leavy friend is ordinary.
Alocasia Polly likes warm environment, humidity and moistened condition which can help Alocasia to flourish.
How do you make Alocasia Polly thrive?
Here are 3 key tips for success of Alocasia Polly which can thrive your Alocasia Polly:
- Allow soil to completely dry between watering:
It is most important to allow top 2 inches of soil completely dry before watering.
Because it will thrive your Alocasia Polly.
- Avoid direct sunlight:
Direct sunlight will exposed to sunburn, it’s crucial to avoid direct sunlight to flourish your Polly.
- Keep humidity:
Alocasia Polly likes humidity, almost 70% humidity is necessary for its quality growth.
Some common problem about Alocasia Polly:
Brown spots on the leaves:
Brown spots on the houseplant leaves are usually a sign of too much direct sunlight or sunburn.
To avoid brown patches, move your plant to shaded area, because it help to prevent this problem.
Turning leaves yellowing:
If leaves of your houseplant is turning yellow, its because of too much water or too little water. So try to find out whether you are giving too much or too little water.
To prevent this problem, avoid overwatering or underwatering your plant, moderate amount of water is necessary for it’s growth.
There are many reasons for mealybugs as overwatering, underwatering, overfeeding etc. It can also happen too much sunlight.
Solution: First isolate your plant. The most common method to remove mealybugs from plants by hands use cotton swab dipped in alcohol. Repeat this process for couple of days until problem is completely solved.
No doubt, Alocasia Polly is fussy plant and doesn’t consider as beginner plant. But care of this houseplant is not that much difficult.
Alocasia Polly is similar in care to other houseplants, few tips will help to flourish your plant like maintaining suitable amount of water level, high level of humidity, indirect sunlight, feed your plant on weekly basis. If you follow all these above tips and tricks which can help your Alocasia Polly to flourish indoor.