Just as the name indicates, these plants resemble a silver dragon scale, hence giving them the name Alocasia Silver Dragon. If you are someone who wants to add a unique ornamental plant to their indoor setting, consider this species as a valuable option. Apart from being exceptionally beautiful and eye-catching, it is very simple in terms of care and maintenance. Keep on trying to find out more about the genus, the species, and where you can find Alocasia Silver Dragon for sale.
- Family: Araceae
- Subfamily: Aroideae
- Genus: Alocasia
About the Genus Alocasia
Alocasia is a large group of perennial plants consisting of 79 species. All of these are flowering and belong to the tropical areas of Asia to the subtropical lands of Eastern Australia. Apart from these regions, the plant is widely cultivated around the world.
Common Names and Synonyms
- Alocasia Baginda Silver Dragon
- Elephant Ear Silver Dragon
Origin and Distribution
Originally, Alocasia plants are native to Southeast Asia and Eastern Australia.
Alocasia Silver Dragon Features
Foliage and Stem
These plants are well-known for their unique foliage. The large, silverish, ribbed leaves are elegant and spooky, both at the same time. These plants are arrow-shaped and can grow as long as 2 meters. The large petioles hold these leaves but need support when the plants grow bigger and heavier. The plants are Silver overall but they are heavily filled with dark green venation. The foliage, however, remains compact throughout its life.
Lucky for people who want to use this plant as an ornament, its leaves are evergreen, meaning that they stay silver and spooky throughout the year. Seasons passing by have no negative effect on them.
When fully mature, these plants can grow as tall as 0.45 meters and can spread as wide as 0.4 meters. Their perfect size makes them very easy to be displayed in the empty corners in the house.
While they don’t complain about warm temperatures, they do not do well in frost. Hence, they are not very temperature-tolerant during the winter season and will start to look unwell immediately if exposed to cold temperatures.
Fortunately, for those who wish to buy this plant but live in high-humidity areas, Silver Dragon Alocasia loves humidity and prefers more moisture in the air around it. Hence, it is very tolerant to humid environments.
Because these plants are water-loving, they will not appreciate being left dry and dehydrated. Alocasia Silver Dragon is not a drought-resistant plant so keep it well-hydrated and happy.
Disease and Pest Resistance
In terms of growing problems, the plant only has a few. Bacterial and fungal infections such as leaf spots, root rot, and Xanthomonas. When it comes to pests and unwanted insects, mealybugs, spider mites, and aphids are a common finding.
While all of these problems are different, they all have a common origin: excessively humid plant surface and soil. Thus, the best way to prevent all of these problems is to make sure that the plant is always clean and dry.
However, if a plant does catch an insect or disease, the proper management includes isolation and spraying of fungicides or insecticides as per the requirements.
Alocasia Silver Dragon is a fast-growing plant. If taken good care of, this species takes weeks to only a couple of months to fully develop to its mature size. Their growth is especially fast during the spring and summer seasons.
Unfortunately, Alocasia plants are not edible. Instead, they are highly toxic. They can result in various painful and uncomfortable symptoms that can get severe and ultimately lead to death if not managed on time. Hence, you must keep your pets and children away from these plants.
In the warmer climates, these plants grow as perennials. However, in the cold regions, they need to be replanted every year.
As evident, these plants are fairly low-maintenance because they do not have any extra or special care or requirement. You do not have to spend extra time or money on it either.
During the cold months, the plant tends to go dormant. In simple words, it means that it stops growing and generally goes to “sleep”. Over-watering or overfeeding the plant in hopes to wake it up is not a good idea. The best approach is to let it be and take care of it as appropriate. Water it as needed and avoid propagation or pruning of the plant during this phase.
Alocasia Silver Dragon Care
Alocasia Silver Dragon care requires full sun to partial shade. You can water it occasionally as the soil dries up. Just make sure that the soil remains damp and rich with nutrition and has a pH of 5.0 to 7.5. Frosty temperatures are a huge no-no for these plants.
These plants require only occasional watering. However, they are very sensitive about the quantity of water being given to them. If you over-water them, the soil will become waterlogged, the roots will suffocate, and the plant will die. If you under-water the plant, it will dehydrate to death.
So how do you know how much water it needs and when?
It’s simple. Water the plant once thoroughly. Then, use your finger to feel the texture of the soil before you water it again. If you feel that the top player has started to dry up nicely, you can water the Alocasia again. If it’s still wet, let it be for a couple more days. You can also use a moisture meter for this purpose. Plus, these requirements vary according to the weather and the climate. Generally, water needs increase during the warm, summer seasons and they reduce during the winter months.
Rich moist and well-drained soil is ideal for an Alocasia Silver Dragon plant. Drainage is an important factor for the soil to avoid water accumulation near the roots. However, the soil should also be able to retain the necessary moisture. Balance is essential. Hence, stay away from dry, sandy textures as well as clay-like soil that is hard to drain. You may add compost or peat Moss as soil amendments and let the pH stay acidic to neutral (5.0 to 7.5).
Like all Alocasia plants, this one is also very lenient in terms of sunlight exposure. They can do well under bright lights but don’t mind the shade either. The key to healthy growth is to find moderation. Direct, scorching light for long hours can burn the plant’s leaves. Thus, keeping the plant in a well-lit room with lots of indirect, filtered, and diffused sunlight will be much better than putting it outdoors unprotected. If you must put it in such a spot, opt for shade clothes that will dull down the sunlight hitting its leaves. This factor is especially important if the plant is variegated. Such plants need extra light to help them photosynthesize properly.
The ideal routine would be to expose the plant to direct sunlight in the early hours of the morning as well as the late hours of the afternoon. During both of these times, the direct light is less harmful and damaging to the plant’s leaves and it’s variegation.
Because they have a tropical and subtropical origin, warm temperatures are a must. Any temperature above 16 degrees celsius is good enough. However, slight variations can be tolerated by the species. What it does not respond well to is the cold. Lower temperatures and frosty environments do not do good to an Alocasia Silver Dragon plant. Thus, make sure that you move the plant to a warmer place when the temperatures start to drop outside.
While there is no set criteria or obligation, Alocasia Silver Dragon loves humidity in the air and will thrive in such conditions. So, make sure you give it lots of moisture around it. If you live in a highly humid region, perfect!
But if you reside in dry climates, you might need to put a little extra effort into your plant. There are several ways you can boost the factor of humidity in the house. For example, you can install an indoor humidifier for your houseplant collection or indoor garden. You can set it up to provide the level of humidity that you desire. If not, you can opt for regular misting and the pebble tray method. For this, simply spray the plant with distilled water several times a day or week (as per necessary) or put the pot in a pebble tray filled with water, respectively. In the latter method, the water will evaporate and provide constant moisture in the air around the plant. It will act as a DIY humidifier.
These plants prefer slow-releasing fertilizers. Ensure that they are rich with organic matter and are good quality plant food. Cheap fertilizers tend to have heavy chemicals and salts that can kill your plant faster than you may think. Slow-releasing fertilizers only need to be given around three or four times a year as per the plant’s requirements and your judgment.
Alocasia plants like staying root-bound, so they do not complain a lot about repotting. Frequent repotting of the plant can irritate it and slow down its growth. When you pot the plant initially, place it in an appropriately sized container in the first place, and let it be for a year or so. After that, it is best if you shift it to a larger pot only every couple of years. You can, however, do this step earlier in case of an emergency such as overgrown plants or infections.
Grooming and Pruning
Considering that these plants have a naturally neat and organized structure, you don’t have to care much about the pruning. Although, regular grooming is a good idea. The cleaner the plant, the less likely it is to catch infections and invite pest attacks, and, thus, the healthier it’s growth.
Cultivation and Propagation
The usual way of propagating an Alocasia Silver Dragon is by division. The rhizomes are separated and cut into pieces to be grown separately. Each of these divisions grows into an individual plant and needs to be cared for appropriately. The best time to do this is during the spring and summer season. Avoid propagation of an Alocasia while it is dormant.
- Sterilize all of your tools and equipment to reduce the incidence of infection.
- Select a healthy parent plant and remove it from its pot.
- Separate the rhizomes from the mature plant and cut them into pieces.
- Plant each of these rhizomes separately and put them all under optimal conditions including good light, warm temperatures, and lots of humidity.
- Water the plant frequently and let it grow.
Week 1-3: Place the rhizomes in the soil and put them under good, growth-stimulating conditions.
Weak 3-5: Tiny roots will start growing at the bottom of the cutting.
Weak 6-7: By now, the cutting will start to sprout and you will see shoots appearing. These then grow into mature leaves and the plant gradually grows bigger and bigger depending on the care that you gave it.
Month 3-6: Maintain the level of care and watch the plant grow to its full size.
Displaying Alocasia Silver Dragon Plant
Because of their unique color and structure, you can display them pretty much anywhere you want. However, a plant with such interesting foliage deserves all the individual attention it can get. Thus, it is best if you display them somewhere alone so that it can be prominent. The design of the plant is perfect for formal and sophisticated indoor settings.
Apart from being a beautiful addition to an indoor house-plant collection, these plants are useful for cleaning the air that you breathe. Just put them in an empty corner of the room, water them and take care of them, and they will return the favor with clean, pure, and fresh air to inhale.
What is the Difference Between the Alocasia Silver Dragon and Alocasia Dragon Scale Plant?
Mainly, the two are differentiated by their color. Dragon scale is greener as compared to Alocasia Silver Dragon. The latter has more silver-ish tones and looks spookier than the former. If you look at them side by side, the difference is easy to spot.
Alocasia Silver Dragon for Sale
Before you purchase an Alocasia Silver Dragon, a proper inspection of the plant is necessary. Thoroughly examine the surface of the leaves as well as under and around them. Check to see whether you can spot any abnormal patches, spots, or growths. Also, make sure that you are looking at an Alocasia Silver Dragon and not at an Alocasia Dragon Scale. Sometimes, the difference is not easy to spot in low or dim lights and neither are the abnormalities. Take the plant into natural light and examine it properly.
Alocasia Silver Dragon is a unique plant not only interesting to look at, but also very easy to maintain. These plants are a great way to add aesthetics to your room and purify the air, both at the same time. Their ideal size and structure make them perfect for empty corners and shelves in your house. They are toxic, however, so make sure you keep them high up and away from children and pets.