Learning the basics of how to transplant elephant ear plants in the UK is extremely important whether you’re looking to propagate them or transfer a plant that’s outgrowing its container. Elephant ear plants are known for their large leaves that resemble that of an elephant’s ear. It’s a tropical plant Elephant ear plants are warm-loving plants that thrive best in areas with high moisture.
Thanks to its extensive and beautiful foliage, it has become of the most popular types of plants that homeowners use to surround areas such as ponds and walkways or as a focal point on a specific location in the house. Elephant plants can grow up to 3 to 6 feet tall.
It’s considered as hardy in the U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 8 through 10. As with the other parts of the plant, the leaves are also edible, but one should cook first before ingesting to remove the toxic irritants.
Transplanting Elephant Ear Plants
The ideal time to transplant Elephant Ear Plants is during spring when the last frost has passed. Once they established, these plants quickly grow large and spread into the surrounding soil. In areas where there’s no frost at any time of the year, one can transplant Elephant Ear any time of the year.
Transplanting Elephant Ear plants are the easiest while they are still young. Here’s how you can transplant Elephant Ear:
Step 1. Pick out a spot where you’ll grow your transplanted elephant ear plants
Elephant Ear thrives in areas where there is partial shade. If you plan to transplant them directly to the ground, it’s best to pick a place where the soil will be constantly moist and wet, like near ponds. If you’re growing them in a damp area, they may be able to tolerate direct sunlight, but be sure to provide a partial shade during the hottest part of the day.
Step 2. Enrich the soil
Elephant Ear Plants also need a good soil mixture to grow in. Before transplanting, mix some compost on your UK garden soil and spread it using a garden fork. Applying soil will add some organic matter to your soil which will produce significant benefits for your plant.
Step 3. Obtain the plant to be transplanted
Once you’re ready to transplant your plants, obtain the Elephant Ear plant from the container or another site. Dig the plant’s root ball out of the container or ground. Ensure not to create damage on your tubers.
When obtaining the plant to be transplanted, you can cut some of the leaves on the tuber and leave two (at most) leaves on top. It will make it easier for the plant to support its growth with lesser leaves to worry about.
Step 4. Water your plants to keep them wet
Check your transplants now and then. Make sure that the soil remains wet because Elephant Ear plants prefer growing in wet areas. Water the plant when the ground is starting to become dry.
If you live in the UK area where the climate is primarily cold all year long, you can obtain the transplant of your Elephant Ears on the first sign of light frost in your place and store them inside a cardboard box filled with peat moss. You can then keep your transplants in a cool, dry place until the last frost has passed.
Growing Elephant Ears in a Hobby Greenhouse
Elephant Ear plants are easy. But if you want to see better results (i.e. more giant leaves, more vigorous plant), growing them inside a hobby polytunnel could be a viable alternative. Here are some of the best advantages of growing Elephant Ears or other types of plants inside a hobby greenhouse:
Advantage #1. Safeguard plants from harsh weather conditions
One of the most emphasised advantages of having a hobby polytunnels is its ability to provide ample protection against strong winds. With your area enclosed, you will ensure that your plants won’t get destroyed or getting knocked over, thus destroying them in their entirety. Not only that, but it will also protect your plants from too much rainfall, which can potentially cause root rot.
Advantage #2. Protection against frost
Elephant Ears are not tolerant of frost, and they will die once the temperatures reach freezing. When winter comes, you can provide safety for your plant by placing them inside a hobby polytunnel where they will receive the warmth and humidity they need. You can maintain the heat inside the hobby polytunnel by using heating pads and other heat-generating tools.
Advantage #3. Avoid damage caused by pests and diseases
Aphids, mealybugs, and mites are among the most common pests that can affect your elephant ear plants. Diseases such as fungal leaf blight may also threaten its survival if not detected early or left unaddressed. You can prevent these situations from happening with a hobby greenhouse since you situate your plants in a highly controlled and enclosed area.
Final Thoughts: How to Transplant Elephant Ear Plants in the UK Successfully
Elephant ear plants make an excellent addition to your landscape. Whether you’re planning to propagate or transfer your plant to another location, following the steps on how to transplant elephant ear plants in the UK as outlined above will increase your chances of success. You can also use a hobby polytunnel to continue growing or store your plant during the winter season to ensure that they survive the weather.