Xanthosoma violaceum – Blue Taro – Elephant Ear – Yautia – Tannia – Malanga – Ape –

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Xanthosoma – Elephant Ear – Yautia – Tannia – Malanga – Ape –

There are up to 50 tuberous or thick-stemmed perennials in the Arum family that make up this genus.  They natural occur in tropical USA and in Central and South America.  They are grown for their edible, fleshy long stalked leaves, which may be arrow to spear shaped or pedately divided into 3-18 segments and up to 5’ long.  Their corms, which are also edible, as are the stems,  Inflorescences consist of a spadix within a taller spathe, and are borne intermittently throughout the year.  Commonly used as a tropical accent annual.

Under glass, grow in large containers, in soil based potting mix, with added leaf mold, in moderate light.  In growth, water freely and apply a balanced liquid fertilizer every 2-3 weeks.  Water moderately in winter.  Outdoors, grow in slightly acidic, leafy, humus rich, fertile, well-drained soil in partial shade.  Avoid water logging.

Prone to fungal spots, bacterial spots, and  viruses diseases.

X. violaceum – Blue Taro – This tuberous perennial grows 8’ feet tall and 6’ feet wide.  It produces arrow shaped leaves, to 30” long, with almost triangular lobes, and dark purple leaf stalks, 12-35” long, have creamy white veins above purple veins beneath and at the edges. It intermittently bears pale yellow spathes, 12” long, around violet, dark red, or white spadices.  Edible tubers are pink inside.

Zones 11