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Name: Avis Huskey
DeWitt, Virginia
Aug 19, 2014 8:58 PM CST
I have a Colocasia-Royal Hawaiian Kona Coffee plant - What kind of plant food should I use and how often? Also, will it tolerate full sun
(90 - 95 degrees)? Thanks!!!
Avis Huskey
Name: Lin
Southeast Florida (Zone 10a)

Region: United States of America Deer Region: Florida Charter ATP Member Million Pollinator Garden Challenge I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Procrastinator Birds Butterflies Bee Lover Hummingbirder Container Gardener
Aug 20, 2014 8:59 AM CST
Hi Avis, Welcome to All Things Plants!

I found Dwarf Elephant Ear (Colocasia esculenta Royal Hawaiian® Kona Coffee) in the database but I don't know what kind of fertilizer one uses on these plants. Temp's of 90º - 95º shouldn't bother but even though it states full sun to partial shade, I'd think too many hours of direct hot sun would scorch the leaves.

Hopefully someone with more knowledge on Colocasia will pop in with some suggestions for you. I'm thinking @eclayne @Lariann @dyzzypyxxy or a few others on the Aroids forum might be able to help.

Again, Welcome!

~ Playing in the dirt is my therapy ... and I'm in therapy a lot! ~

Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Aug 20, 2014 9:35 AM CST
Hi and Welcome! Avis. Colocasias are very responsive plants, love lots of water so don't be shy about watering, and are heavy feeders, too. Mine all live in dappled shade of my big oak trees here. As Lin says, for Kona Coffee you need to shade it from mid-day sun at least, so the leaves won't burn. Morning sun is usually best, and late afternoon sun is ok, but hotter.

If the plant is in a pot (and in VA, I'd guess it probably is) most of us use water-soluble plant food with the addition of some Epsom Salts. (extra magnesium). I personally use Miracle-Gro as my plant food for potted Elephant Ears plus about a teaspoon of Epsom Salts per gallon of water/fert. My plants are larger cultivars than Kona Coffee, all outside and get a pretty regular "rinse" of heavy rain here in Florida. So keep in mind to rinse out your plant at least monthly to remove any buildup of salts if you have a dry spell, or if the plant is indoors. (back when I lived in Utah and grew big tropicals indoors, I'd put them in the shower and gently flush them for a few minutes with lukewarm water.)

If you could post a picture of your plant, I'd have a better idea of how much fertilizer to recommend for you to give it. Need to see how big the plant is, and how big the pot is, too. As the weather cools, and the plant slows down, you will need to gauge how to ease back on the water and fert. Even indoors, it's cooler at night and the plant will get a lot less light through winter, so it will grow more slowly.

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill

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