Caladiums are members of the Araceae family and are native to tropical South America. They can be a lovely addition to the summer garden and a treasured house plant year-round. Few plants can brighten a dim area of the garden like the ornate, brightly colored leaves of the caladiums. Their beautiful foliage lasts all season long and and requires no deadheading!
There are many different varities of caladiums and the heart shaped leaves range from 6 inches to 2 feet in length. The colors may vary from green and white, green and red, white with red blotches or green veins and some even have lavender spots.
Caladiums are tubers and can be started indoors in February or March. They grow best in high organic, well aerated soil. The plants can then be grown as house plants or moved outdoors to containers or directly into ground beds, after the danger of frost has past. Caladiums prefer a moist, well drained soil. Be careful not to overwater because poorly drained soil will cause the tubers to rot.
Some caladium cultivars that can be grown successfully indoors include 'Lord Derby', 'Fire Chief', 'White Christmas', 'Red Flash', 'Carolyn Whortyon', 'Poecile Angalis', 'Aaron'.