Taro Plant Grow Your Own Backyard Poi

Taro Plant Grow Your Own Backyard Poi

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If you like tropical plants, we have the perfect plant for you. The taro plant, one of the many species of elephant plants, has giant leaves with a variety of unique colors. In addition, the taro root grows, which is actually one of the most important staple foods in the world!

Taro is an ancient plant. Native to Southeast Asia, it is considered one of the first plants ever cultivated. Today, almost every country you visit, from Australia to Papua New Guinea and Belize, has its own taro-focused dishes, such as POI. In the United States, Hawaii is the largest commercial producer. In the tropical state alone, there are 100 varieties of taro, which are an important element of Hawaiian cuisine.

If you are wondering what taro’s root vegetables look like, imagine a hairy potato covered with rings. The taro pulp after cleaning turns white or pink and has a sweet and nutty taste. The giant leaves are also edible and are usually cooked like spinach.

Elephant ears grow well outdoors in tropical regions, but they will also grow in the 8 to 10 regions of the United States. This plant also produces an excellent houseplant, although it needs a lot of sun. Thanks to its size, the Tarot will certainly attract attention in your home or garden. And thanks to its tubers, the taro will improve your edible garden game.

All about the taro plant

So, what is the root of the Tarot? Well, we weren’t kidding when we said that this plant was big. Mature taro plants grow up to 3 to 6 feet tall and wide. The leaves themselves can reach up to 3 feet in height. At the base of the plant is the main tuber, which stores the nutrients necessary for the plant for wintering. From this tuber grow fibrous roots called tubers, as well as several smaller tubers.

Instead of stems, long thick petioles connect the foliage directly to the root, as in beets. The leaves are heart-shaped and have veins. They are usually green, but can also be purple, red and even black. Multi-colored varieties combine these colors in many patterns. The plant blooms rarely and sporadically. Its flowers resemble Callas, but are not very noticeable among the much larger leaves.

As it is a tropical plant, the taro has become accustomed to a long growing season. It takes seven months of warm weather and a mild winter to ripen. In cold regions, elephant ears can be grown annually for ornamental purposes.

The Tarot has so many different names that we cannot list them all. Most often you will hear it called taro or Dashin plant, although caladium, Melange, Kokoyam and Eddo are also common names. From a botanical point of view, this plant belongs to the species Cococasia esculenta, but has many varieties.

The varieties usually vary in color, but some root crops taste better or need to be grown in a certain way. Taro can grow in both dry and wet conditions, but some varieties are intended for only one. We recommend “Bun Long” or “Elepaio” as varieties to get good roots. For decorative purposes only, “Black Magic”, “Blue Hawaii” or “Hilo Beauty” are excellent choices.

Let’s not forget another detail: the Tarot is a little harmful. The whole plant contains calcium oxalate, a powerful chemical that irritates the oral cavity and stomach. Fortunately, this toxin can be completely eliminated by boiling the plant well.

Planting taro roots

The Eddo plant is grown vegetatively, usually by tubers. Like potatoes, you can use small tubers or parts of large plants. You can also buy Tarot in the children’s room.

Choose a place with rich, moist soil that partially receives sunlight. Because taro plants grow well in humid conditions, they are ideal for the edge of a garden pond. Indoors, you will need a fairly large pot and a spacious place next to a south-facing window.

Apply a little organic matter to the soil before planting. As your taro grows, it will appreciate the nutrients and the silty texture. Plant each tuber 2 to 3 inches deep and 15 to 24 inches apart. A common practice is to plant them in 6-inch furrows to save water.

Taking care of the Tarot

To stay healthy, you must comply with the care requirements. Taro’s plants are growing fast, so get ready for the stormy summer!

The ideal temperature is 77 to 95°F. Taro tubers need at least 200 days of warm, frost-free weather to ripen. If your plant lives outdoors all year round, temperatures should always be above 45°F (lower temperatures can affect tuber growth). Indoor taros should only be exposed to the outside during the period between the last and the first frost.

Water and humidity

It is important not to let the soil dry out. The taro plant can grow up to 6 inches deep, so feel free to use a watering can! This plant is perfect for hard-to-reach places in your garden that are often overcrowded. However, in winter, keep the tubers dry to allow the plant to rest.

For this plant, high humidity is best. Indoors, use a humidifier for the plants so that the taro leaves are satisfied. You can also spray the plant from a sprayer to get additional moisture.

Universe

The esculent colocasia grows best in moist soils, but this does not mean that you should plant it in suitable soil. Instead, choose a soil with a lot of humus. It should be very fertile and loamy texture. It should retain water well and at the same time drain enough so that the roots do not drown. For taro leaves, a slightly acidic pH of 5.5-6.5 is preferred.

Fertilization

These giant leaves need a lot of nutrients to grow. During the growing season, regularly treat your elephant ears with fertile soil with potassium-rich fertilizers. You may want to test the soil in advance, as an excess of nitrogen can make taro plants fragile.

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