The Caladium Strawberry Star is quite an exotic plant that is often prized for its leaf. It can be used to enrich the look of your house or garden extremely well. However, some people might be confused about this particular plant as it is not common.
In this article, we’ll be looking at this plant and the caladium family in general. We’ll also help you understand the conditions needed to properly grow the plant.
What Is Caladium Strawberry Star?
Caladium Strawberry Stars are a species of Caladium plants. The common trait shared by this family of plants is their heart-shaped and large leaves. Strawberry stars have gotten their name from the white and pinkish hue that is present in their heart-shaped leaves. Their leaves give them a unique look, and as a result, they have become widely popular as decorations.
They are generally tropical plants and often thrive in hot climates. Many of the species have brightly and different colored leaves. Their dark stems help provide better contrast for the leaves, and with proper care, they can grow up to be quite tall.
Is It Poisonous?
The short answer is yes- Caladiums are poisonous, although the severity of the poison can vary. The poison arises from a compound called calcium oxalate alongside a protein called asparagine. These two combined work together to provide a massive irritation in small doses and gives the leaves a horrible taste.
In higher doses, this can be lethal. Often some species of plants have potent enough toxins that are merely touching the leaves without gloves can cause skin rashes to pop up. So it goes without saying that when handling these plants, make sure to use gloves. Never rub your eyes with the hand that you touched the leaves with, and make sure to wash your hands every time.
Effects of the poison can be skin swelling and vomiting. Both humans and animals can be affected so if you have house pets, make sure to keep them away from these plants in case they come into contact with the leaves or end up eating the leaves.
Where Do Caladiums Grow Best?
As it has been mentioned, caladiums are tropical plants. They prefer high temperatures, high humidity, and exposure to sunlight. As a result, they are commonly found in India and Africa, particularly in forests or near rivers where they can get ample sunlight and also water.
They can be grown both indoors and outdoors in many homes. You will see them bloom during the summer and go dormant as fall approaches.
Do Caladiums Produce Flowers?
Yes, caladiums can bloom and produce flowers, although they aren’t very frequent. They need to be grown in the appropriate conditions for a chance to produce flowers. Flowers will usually appear in either spring or fall.
The flowers produced by caladium are often very small and covered by the leaves, making them difficult to see. It is possible to separate the flower from the plant though you need to be careful.
You can use scissors to cut off the flower. Make sure the scissor blades are sanitized and that you make an angled cut.
How Do You Make It Grow Faster?
Caladiums can be needy and require a good deal of effort to ensure they properly grow. To ensure fast and proper growth, you will need to make sure the conditions are proper for good growth.
Caladiums thrive in hot temperatures or climates. Areas with temperatures of 21 degrees Celsius or higher are good enough for attempting to grow Caladiums. Places with temperatures lower will cause the plant to die out. High humidity is also favored by these plants, and this will result in them being able to grow faster.
It is possible to make use of a heater and humidifier to grow these plants in places where they wouldn’t otherwise. However, keeping these conditions can prove expensive, and if you happen to be on a budget, it is not recommended. It is generally easier to grow Caladiums faster outdoors than it is indoors.
It is also important to check the soil quality when growing Caladiums. They require high-quality and mineral-rich soils for proper growth. Compost or leaves can be used when planting Caladiums to help enrich the soil. Fertilizer can also be added to ensure faster growth, and it is recommended that it is a natural fertilizer.
Another thing to note about soil is that you should have the means to drain out the water from the soil. You can make use of a draining pot if you’re growing Caladiums as a potted plant. Otherwise, you will need to introduce draining holes into the soil to help remove excess water.
To ensure Caladiums grow faster and produce flowers, they need regular watering. Since they are usually grown in hotter climates, they require a great deal of water so make sure you keep the soil they are growing on wet. A sprinkler system can help, or you can opt to use a watering can.
Caladiums prefer sunlight. It is easier to ensure ample sunlight when you are growing them outside and in gardens. Just make sure you do not plant them under the shade of bigger plants or trees that may block the sun’s rays from reaching them. If growing them indoors, it is recommended to place them near windows where they can receive sunlight.
In the case that temperatures drop, your caladiums are at risk of dying. To preserve them, you can cut off wilted leaves and remove them from the ground and take them inside. You can opt to replant them inside in pots or preserve them in a bag until the temperature becomes favorable again.
Is It Possible To Grow Caladium In Water?
Yes. It is possible to grow Caladiums in water jars though they require fertilizer as well as more maintenance to ensure they bloom. This is usually done for decorations.
Is It An Indoor Or Outdoor Plant?
The answer is that the Caladium plant is both. You can grow it both outdoors in a garden or indoors in a pot. Generally, it is easier to maintain Caladiums outdoors as they receive more sunlight and heat. Maintaining it indoors is more difficult and sometimes expensive.
Caladiums are incredibly beautiful decorative plants. Even if you don’t want to plant them in a garden, you can keep them inside to improve the look of your home. However, you must know that Caladiums are needy and require proper attention and care to bloom.