By Jennifer Poindexter
Are you looking for a shade-friendly plant that brightens up darker spaces? If so, caladium could be the plant for this part of your landscape. These plants produce foliage which range in design and color. I’m going to discuss the two main types of caladiums and the different options which fall under these two distinct categories.
We’ll also discuss the proper growing conditions, planting zones, and even provide a few tips for overwintering these plants.
Here are caladium varieties you should consider growing around your home:
The Main Types of Caladiums
The two main types of caladium are fancy leaf and strap leaf. As you might imagine, the fancy leaf caladiums have fancier leaves.
These plants produce heart-shaped leaves while the strap leaf caladiums produce foliage that’s more narrow and has jagged edges.
Examine the two types of plants and decide which option works best for the design of your landscape.
When it comes to growing caladiums, the color options and designs are almost as vast as your imagination.
Are Caladiums Annuals or Perennials?
Caladiums can be grown as either an annual or a perennial. These plants remain hardy in planting zones eight through eleven.
In these growing locations, you don’t need to do anything to the plants over winter. As the cooler temperatures move in, the leaves of the plants will wither.
They’ll go into dormancy and develop again when warmer temperatures arrive the following year.
Should you live in a lower planting zone, you have three options for growing this plant. The first option is to treat it as an annual.
Your second option is to grow caladiums in pots. When cooler temperatures arrive, allow the leaves to wither, stop watering the plant, and move the pot to a protected location that’s both dark and cooler.
The final option for growing caladiums in a lower planting zone is to dig the tubers up before all the leaves wither.
Once the tubers are removed from the ground, store them in a cool, dark location. Then replant them the following year when warmer temperatures return.
These are a few tips for growing caladiums no matter which planting zone you live in.
Caladium Varieties You Should Consider Growing
Now that you know the different varieties of caladium, let’s discuss your options. Here are a few types of caladiums to grow:
Candidum is an easy variety of caladium to spot as the leaves are heart-shaped and consist of different shades of green. This frequently makes them look like angel wings.
This is a fancy leaf option which prefers full to partial shade. Also, ensure the growing location has consistently damp but well-draining soil. Provide what this variety of caladium needs, and you could have quite the show-stopper on your hands.
2. Red Frill
Red frill caladium is another hard-to-miss option as its curvy leaves are outlined in green and the centers are filled in with a rich red color.
If you’d like a splash of color in the shaded areas of your yard, red frill could be a great addition. As with other varieties of caladium, ensure the plants remain evenly damp.
3. Heart of Jesus
The heart of Jesus caladium is another fancy leaf variety that has lighter colors, but still manages to stand out due to the color combination. Expect the foliage of this caladium variety to have an outline of green and the veins of the plant to appear green as well.
In the center, there’s a dash of pink and cream color that takes up the remainder of the leaf. This could be a great way to add a subtle splash of color to your landscape or inside your home, should you grow this caladium variety as a houseplant.
Bombshell is a fancy leaf variety of caladium which closely resembles red frill due to its coloring. This plant produces heart-shaped leaves which are outlined in green.
Yet, the rest of the leaf is a deep red. This plant provides color to any growing space as long as it’s provided the right amount of shade and adequate moisture.
5. White Wing
White wing is a unique option of caladium. This plant is a strap leaf variety which has rippled foliage with a dark outline of green.
Then the inside of the leaf is a lighter green. This variety is also different because it can handle shade to full sun.
6. Florida Sweetheart
Florida sweetheart is a colorful option. The leaves are outlined in a rich green while the rest is filled in with a blush pink.
If you’d like to grow this strap leaf variety of caladium around your home, provide an area with damp, well-draining soil and full to partial shade.
Aaron is another fancy leaf variety of caladium. This plant produces heart-shaped foliage that comes in a variety of shades of green.
Though this plant isn’t as colorful as some of the other options, it’s a great way to add classic beauty to a shaded growing location.
Moonlight caladium has a unique appearance in comparison to the others mentioned above. This plant has extremely light leaves. The outline and veins of the leaf are a darker green while the rest of the leaf is a pale green.
If you’re looking for a plant that produces gorgeous foliage and can handle full to partial sunlight, moonlight could be what you’ve been looking for.
9. Florida Red Ruffles
Florida red ruffles is another strap leaf variety of caladium. These curvy leaves are outlined in deep green and filled in with a rich red.
Needless to say, this plant demands attention due to its texture and colors. This variety can handle a little more sun than some of the others, so a growing location with partial sunlight should keep it happy.
Gingerland caladium has speckled leaves. It begins with a rich, green outline. From there, the leaves are speckled with deep red, light green, and cream.
If you’re interested in growing this variety of caladium, be sure to select a growing location with evenly damp soil and partial shade to avoid scorching the leaves.
Candyland is another fun variety of caladium. This plant is a strap leaf option that has narrower leaves with a mixture of green, pink, and cream colors both filling and outlining the foliage.
If you’d like a small amount of color in your shaded growing location, this could be a good option to fit your style.
12. June Bride
June bride is a breathtaking option. This is a solid white caladium plant. It’s a fancy leaf variety, so the foliage is heart-shaped and a crisp white color.
This caladium variety does well in sun or shade as long as it’s planted in well-draining soil that remains evenly damp. Many people grow it as a border plant or even as part of a container garden.
13. Carolyn Whorton
Carolyn Whorton is a fancy leaf variety of caladium. This plant consists of heart-shaped foliage that has a green outline, dark pink outline for the veins of the plant, and a blush pink filling in the remaining areas of the leaves.
This variety prefers full to partial shade which is great because its bright colors can liven up a dark growing area.
14. Pink Symphony
Pink symphony consists of both dark green and shades of pink, but the way these colors are put together within this plant is different from some of the other options mentioned here.
These narrow leaves have a layered outline of deep green. Then the rest of the foliage is filled with a lighter pink while some of the veins are outlined in green as well. It’s truly a sight to behold.
15. Red Flash
This name suits this variety. The foliage of the red flash caladium is heart-shaped since it’s a fancy leaf option.
However, the leaves are a rich green on the outside, but as you work towards the center a deep red starts to fill in the space. It’s a great way to add color to your shaded growing location.
16. Strawberry Star
Strawberry star is another lighter version of caladium. This option has heart-shaped leaves which are a light green. The veins of the foliage are outlined in a darker green and there are shades of pink which shine throughout the foliage as well.
If you’re looking for a simple plant with subtle coloring, strawberry star caladium could be for you. Grow this plant in partial shade outdoors or bright, indirect light indoors.
17. Miss Muffet
Miss Muffet caladium plants are a unique option. The foliage of this plant is a lime green with dark specks. Plus, the veins of the leaves are a rich pink.
This variety grows best in full to partial sunlight, so if you’re looking to add a splash of color and a little texture to your landscape, Miss Muffet caladium might do the trick.
18. Thai Beauty
Thai beauty has elongated leaves with a dark green outline. The veins of the plant are also dark green while the remainder of the foliage is a lighter pink.
This option of caladium prefers full to partial shade. Like other types of caladium, it’s vital that the soil be well-draining for this plant and that it remains consistently damp.
Iceberg caladium is a great option for a subtle dollop of color in a growing location. The foliage of this plant is a mixture of dark and light green.
Plus, when you look at the base of the leaf (near the stem), you’ll notice a dark red coloration. If you’re a fan of classic beauty, this variety hits the mark.
20. Pink Beauty
Pink beauty is great for those who love the color pink! This variety has leaves with a rich green outline and speckled green throughout the foliage.
However, the rest of the leaf is a pastel pink that shines beautifully against the rich green. If you like this color combination, consider adding it to your growing space.
You now have twenty different options of caladiums to introduce around your home, both indoors or outdoors.
Pick a color combination you enjoy with a lighting requirement you can meet, and begin adding these beautiful plants around your home and garden spaces.