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Preserving Elephant Ears Bulbs (Corms) and Plants

Don’t compost those elephant ears plants – instead preserve them for next year’s garden. 

Depending on your hardiness zone and the variety you are growing, your wintering options may vary.  Those in colder regions will need to bring the plants indoors.  You can grow them as houseplants in a cool bright location.  Just be careful not to overwater as the plants will be growing much slower and need less water. 

Or overwinter the large corm, often called a bulb, if present.  Dig the corm, clean, cure and store in a cool, frost-free dark location for winter.

Those on the northern edge of the plant’s hardiness can leave their plants in the garden with the help of winter mulch.  After a light frost, remove the dead foliage and surround the planting with chicken wire.  Fill with weed-free straw or evergreen boughs for insulation. 

Those in warmer regions do not need the help of winter mulch.

A bit more information:  Check on overwintering bulbs for signs of early sprouting or rot.  Move bulbs to a cooler space if they begin to sprout in storage.  Dispose of rotting bulbs as soon as they are discovered to prevent the spread to healthy bulbs.

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