It's caladium weather, they're beautiful, on sale and last for decades

Written by Doug Oster on .

blog white caladiumThe morning light dances over a white caladium leaf in the shade garden. The caldium is in a pot growing in consort with hostas and corydalis. Photos by Doug Oster

This is caladium weather, they love the heat and have been waiting for mid-summer to reach their peak.

They come in many colors, love the shade, are grown for their foliage and are on sale right now at nurseries.

The bulbs are tender and can be saved indoors over the winter.

I love caladiums and plant them all over the garden in containers, they will be happy in the garden too.

Recently I bought a huge coleus in a container. The nursery was almost giving it away. We still have at least three more months of the season for tender crops, so why not. I thought the lime green foliage would be the perfect foil for red caladiums.

In the fall when frost kills the tops, remove the bulbs. Dry them for a day or two on newspaper. I save mine in a box of perlite or vermiculite. Put down a layer of the material then some bulbs. They should not touch to prevent rotting. Then another layer of vermiculite and more bulbs until the box is full.

Store it in a cool dry place which doesn't freeze. Check on them once a month to be sure they aren't rotting.

In the spring they can be potted up and put out in the garden after all chance of frost has passed. I wait at least until June as they can't stand cool soil.

Caladiums planted this time of the year add instant color and can give new life to tired containers.

blog caladium red coleusI knew the perfect place for this huge pot of coleus bought on sale at a nursery.

blog white tightI love the colors of caladiums.

blog caladium spotted and redThis is a fun combination.



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