Removing/Repotting Alocasia Round 1…

Hello and here we go! I am going to start with the biggest pot of Alocasia ‘Calidora’. I could have sworn I took a photo of the Alocasia ‘Calidora’ BEFORE I removed these to HUGE offsets. Oh, well, just have to go with the photos I wound up with because I can’t put them back and pretend I didn’t. It is 11:12 PM as I am starting this post, but if it were daytime, I may be tempted. Just kidding, of course.

Those two girls were really stuck good! Note to self: “Don’t let them get that big next time before removing.” I have said that before.

 

After I removed the two babies, I removed as much of the old potting soil as I thought I should then…

 

I filled the pot with about 3/4 new potting soil (with a timed release fertilizer) and 1/4 of the old I took out, mixed together. I didn’t put any of the “GOOD STUFF” in the pot because I think this ‘ol girl is big enough. Carry these huge pots around a few times and you would say the same.  I put a brick in the pot to make it stand straighter because she was leaning a bit too much. Never know when her leaning over could make the whole pot fall over, especially in the wind. I have been surprised their HUGE leaves don’t act as a sail in the wind anyway.

 

Oh, yeah, baby! ‘ THE GOOD STUFF!” I went to the pasture where I fed hay 2 years ago and a few times last winter. NICE!!! I will need that for the other pots.

 

Since the two Alocasia ‘Calidora’ offsets were pretty big already, I have to use good sized pots. I filled them this far with a combination of new potting soil and the old potting soil I removed from their mother’s pot.

 

I got this weird feeling I was being watched. That’s very normal because I am never alone anyway, none of us are. But #3 is always where I am when I am outside. This afternoon I let the Old English Game Bantam hens out with him, so he is extra happy.

 

The other chickens are out, too. Since I was planning to be outside all afternoon I decided to let them out so I could keep an eye on them. We have foxes so you just never know. One of the neighbors whose property joins the trail brought home some hens not long ago. After a couple of weeks, he only had one left…

 

Then I filled the pots the rest of the way up with ‘The GOOD STUFF”.

 

The Callisia fragrans seems to be watching, too. I think that is because those plantlets or offsets (whatever you call them) want to jump in some dirt of their own so I have to keep an eye on them! Callisia fragrans is a new Bromeliad for me, so I am going to leave the stems, or whatever you call them, with the new plants on the end as long as possible to see what happens. I wonder if the plants on the ends will grow their own stems and new plants. I noticed some of the stems are growing stems now so they will have their own new plant on the end. This plant is going to be a multiplier for sure!

 

OH, now we have a visitor! Can you see it? The Snowberry Clearwing Moth (Hemaris diffinis) enjoying the flowers on the Buddleja ‘Pugster Blue’. Yeah, that’s the one I bought and have yet to figure out where to put it. Maybe we should walk around together and find a spot. It sounds too good to be true, but it is only supposed to grow 2′ tall x 2′ wide…

Where was I?

 

Then I dumped the contents of the two pots into the wheelbarrow to mix. Most of the time when I am transplanting I will take the pot I am going to use and fill it with everything I want in it before I mix. That way I usually have just the right amount, more or less.

 

Then you take one of the plants and kind of guess how much soil you will need to fill the pot up to where the bottom of the stem (I mean tuber) will be. Well, I get a little confused sometimes, especially when the tuber isn’t even large enough to be called a tuber, but it actually is. GEEZ!!!

 

THEN you have to put three stakes along the side of the pot. This is very important because there aren’t many roots and there is A LOT on top. If the plants aren’t too tall you can use rocks for support until enough roots grow to support the plant.

 

If the roots are very long, I trim a little.

 

Not much, though. Alocasia roots are good sized and they spread out and eventually develop a very good support.

 

Place the plant on the soil (in the center, please) and spread the roots out around it in the pot. There are no roots directly under the tuber.

 

You can either tie twine to the center petiole or around them all. I usually go around all of them but this time I am doing just the newest one. New petioles grow out of the last one and eventually the older ones, on the outside, will die, which makes the tubers become larger. Are you confused?

MORE company…

 

“GIRLS, that is NOT a good idea!” Because of their lighter weight, it really isn’t usually a disaster when they climb around on the pots. All the pots have bricks around them to keep the wind from blowing them over, so a little hen isn’t going to knock them over either. Notice the hen on the left with her wing out? She slipped and I got a photo of it. She stepped into the pot with the Huernia schneideriana and after I was finished repotting I noticed she had broken off a couple of pieces… No big deal. After about a week I will just stick them in the pot and they will grow roots.

 

I had forgotten chickens like the flowers of Begonias. Last year, when the Delaware rooster and the bantams were young they would climb around in the pots like this. The Delaware, being much larger, became a bit of a problem. The Old English Game can walk in the pots and even step on stems without breaking them. The Delaware loved getting in the pot with the Begonia boliviensis and eat the flowers. Strangely enough, the flowers the hen was eating were also on that same plant. The ‘Brazilian Lady’ has many more flowers and she hardly touched it. I wonder if they taste different?

Moving along… (actually, I had to save this post here as a draft and finish later).

 

This is the second pot finished.

 

SO, here you have the two new pots of Alocasia ‘Calidora’. There is still another pot of them to be divided but that will have to wait. Next, I am going to tackle the strange pot of Alocasia ‘Mayan mask’…

But first, I want you to see this…

 

Earlier this spring I took the big pot of Alocasia odora and put the 5 larger plants in their own pots (I gave 1 away). I put 3-4 of the smaller plants into 3 more pots… The bigger plants now have kids of their own. I counted and there are now 25 Alocasia odora. How I came to have Alocasia odora is a story in itself and I didn’t know the name. I sent photos to a few Aroid experts and only one replied. He said it was Alocasia odora so that is what I call it. That species gets HUGE but mine have never grown taller than around 20 inches even after 5 years. SO, I think it is safe to say the mystery continues…

 

Remember the photo from a few posts ago of the ‘Alocasia ‘Mayan Mask’ with the A. ‘Portora’ babies in it? This is the one. Besides the parent plant, there is a very large “baby” growing right next to it which could be a little tricky removing without removing the parent plant, too. We shall see.

 

The original tag from Brent & Becky’s where I purchased my Alocasia ‘Mayan Mask’ in the spring of 2012… Yep, this big plant is the original plant, 5 years old, and it has not gone dormant (very close, though). Actually, the ‘A. ‘Calidora’ I just removed the two babies from is also the original plant from Wellspring Gardens in 2012.

 

I removed 7 plants but I left a tiny one that was up next to the parent plant (still attached). Four of the plants are A. ‘Mayan Mask’ and three are A. ‘Portora’. The big baby came out a lot easier than I expected. Much easier than the two Alocasia ‘Calidora’. I put each one in their own pot.

I think probably, somehow maybe, I must have added potting soil to this pot from a pot that use to have Alocasia ‘Portora’ in it… That’s the only explanation I can figure out how they got in this pot with A. ‘Mayan Mask’. The other option is they somehow crossed up… BUT, I don’t think so. That is almost 99.999999999999999999% impossible.

 

I put the larger A. ‘Mayan Mask’ in a good sized pot and had to stake it, too. The others didn’t need stakes.

SO, that’s that for now. Started out with 2 pots and now there are 11 and four more pots to do the same with. So, in the spring I started out with 7 pots of Alocasia. Now there are 21. I gave away 4 earlier besides that. Now, I have to buy another bag of potting soil before I can finish the other pots.

I think I need to write a post telling the difference between Alocasia and Colocasia. Explain why Alocasia leaves stand up and why Colocasia leaves droop. Why do Alocasia prefer shadier areas while Colocasia does best in full sun? Explain the difference between petioles and stems. Also to talk about the difference between bulbs, tubers, rhizomes, corms… I think I need a refresher course, too, because it can get confusing. Some have eyes and some don’t… They multiply in different ways so it is very important to know.

Well, that’s it for now. The task was started on Wednesday afternoon, the post was started Wednesday evening and finished Thursday evening… Round two will begin when I buy another bag of potting soil. That may not be until next week… But it has to be done SOON because one of the pots of Alocasia ‘Portora’ has HUGE plants to be removed…

SO, for now, have a great and blessed day, or rest of your evening! Stay positive, be happy and healthy. Wealth is not only in finances and you can’t buy happiness. Money can buy freedom, however, and that brings happiness (and more plants). Go outside and breathe in that good fresh air and give someone a hug. Remember to thank God for all the awesome life and energy and all you have been blessed with. The universe is ALIVE and we are all part of it. Most of all, pick up a handful of good dirt and give it a good whiff… That’s life in there! GET DIRTY!!!!

11 comments on “Removing/Repotting Alocasia Round 1…

  1. Jim R says:

    Quite an operation. You ended up with a lot more potted plants. Do you keep them all? Or, do you sell them at farmer’s markets, etc.? Seems like you would soon be overrun with extra plants if you didn’t offer them to others.

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    • I try to give them away or trade. Usually, I like to give them to greenhouse owners or people to encourage plant trading. Most of the people who own greenhouses have a lot of their own plants they take cuttings/divisions from that don’t have money invested, So they are willing to give plants to people who give them plants. They buy a lot of plants to resale, so unfortunately, they don’t usually swap with those. I may have to join a local garden club that has plant sales in the spring.

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  2. hairytoegardener says:

    That was a lot of work, but the outcome is worth it. You can now look forward to some lovely new plants, and they were all free! GardenWeb, which is now Houzz, used to list plant swaps for various areas of the country, and they were A LOT of fun…

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    • Laura, I always enjoy removing the babies and watching them row into big plants. I used to keep journals of my plants and every plant had a number. When I removed babies they were given a number and so on. When I gave plants away I put the name of the person I gave them to in the journal. I did this with the Aloe, Agave and Alocasia. Every so often I would take photos of every plant and measure them and add that information to the journal. Seems like I have been on the GardenWeb website before because it rings a bell. SO, now it is Houzz? I will check that out. Thanks for the info and Thanks for the comment!

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  3. Elizabeth says:

    Thanks for the information about the stakes. I don’t have many potted plants so sometimes I do things badly. This should help the bigger transplants a lot! And I love the chicken photos!

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