Caladium, flashy colorful leafage


A very fragile plant that is difficult to grow, Caladium makes houses and apartments lively with its unique foliage.

Short list of Caladium facts

Name – Caladium
Family – Araceae
Type – indoor plant

– 36 to 40 inches (0.8 to 1 meter) indoors, 13 feet (4 meters) in the wild
Exposure – Very well-lit       –       Soil – soil mix       –       Foliage – evergreen

Planting and repotting a Caladium plant

Planting caladiumUpon purchasing, if the pot is too small, proceed to repot the plant so that it may grow adequately.

After that, every 2 or 3 years and preferably in spring, repot your caladium in a pot of a slightly larger size.

  • Caladium roots hate having too much water.
    Double-check that the pot has a hole in the bottom.
    Increase drainage with a layer of gravel or clay pebbles along the bottom of the pot, to make water flow through more easily.
  • Good soil mix is needed.
    Caladium, when it lives indoors, needs soil mix because that is the only source for the nutrients it feeds on.

Propagating Caladium

Caladium rootsMultiply your caladium by dividing the clump. This is best done during the dormant season, in winter.

Make sure to break the clump apart without wounding the roots if you want to propagate more than one new plant. Indeed, roots form tubers from the base of each leaf cluster.

For some Caladium varieties, like taro, they’re edible when prepared correctly! Most aren’t, however.

Where to place your Caladium at home

Caladium exposureThe best place to set up your caladium is near a window that lets a lot of light through, but isn’t in overly direct sunlight, especially during the warmest hours of the day.

  • It is vulnerable to excess sun that might dry the plant up.
    The more light a caladium receives, the nicer its foliage.
  • Absolutely avoid setting it near heat sources such as radiators, because moisture is what this tropical plant needs most.
    Ideal temperatures are around 68 to 70° F (20 to 21° C).

Pruning and caring for Caladium

At the end of winter, if your caladium has lost many leaves, feel free to cut the foliage back entirely, this will stimulate the sending of new shoots and will rejuvenate your plant.

Remove damaged leaves regularly by snipping them off at the base.

Watering your Caladium

Watering caladiumCaladium is a greenhouse plant that appreciates heat and moisture. Regular but moderate watering is thus called for.

All year long, and especially during summer, spray water on the leaves to recreate the moisture levels of its natural habitat.

Watering in spring and summer

Keep the soil mix a bit moist and check that water drains properly.

Add leaf plant liquid fertilizer every 8 to 15 days during the growing phase.

  • Spray the leaves on a regular basis with calcium-free water.

Watering your Caladium in fall and winter

Reduce watering and wait for the soil to be dry before watering again.
Stop adding fertilizer.

Frequent Caladium diseases

Most diseases impacting the plant are those usually infecting indoor plants, like red spider mites, aphids and scale insects.

Learn more about the Caladium plant

A fabulous indoor plant, caladium is nonetheless poisonous. The entire plant from root to leaf is toxic both if ingested and in case of prolonged skin contact.

It must be handled with gloves to avoid risking intoxication.

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