The variegated leaves of this delightful foliage plant range from long, slender lance-like tips of the new dwarf varieties to the immensely large elephant-ear specimens. The familiar transparently thin, white-leaved kinds intricately veined with green resemble huge arrowheads. Caladium foliage comes in shades of crimson, rose, scarlet, yellow, and green; spotted, veined, or margined in darker hues or contrasting colors.
Tubers or rhizomes are started in spring in sphagnum moss in a warm 75 to 85 F temperature. They require very little water until well started. When plants are established, shift them to pots, using a soil mixture of equal parts leafmold, sand, and horticultural charcoal. Once potted, they like plenty of water, so provide good drainage to prevent soggi-ness.
Caladiums can stand sun or partial shade, and benefit from a weekly feeding of liquid manure. Foliage dies back in the fall and tubers may be stored in the pots placed on their sides under the bench. Or, remove tubers from pot and store in sand or dry peatmoss until spring. You can grow caladiums without worrying about insects or disease.
'Fannie Munson', clear, luminous pink leaves with narrow green border; 'Mrs. F. M. Joyner', white leaves with scarlet ribs when shaded, but copper red in partial sun; 'White Christmas, symmetrical pattern of one-half of leaf area pure white, other half Christmas green; 'Candidum', snow white with green netting of veins.