elephant’s ears, aroid lily
Vascular – Exotic
Herbs - Monocots
The National Vegetation Survey (NVS) Databank is a physical archive and electronic databank containing records of over 94,000 vegetation survey plots - including data from over 19,000 permanent plots. NVS maintains a standard set of species code abbreviations that correspond to standard scientific plant names from the Ngä Tipu o Aotearoa - New Zealand Plants database.
Wetlands, streamsides, river systems, heavily disturbed shrubland and forest, damp frost-free open areas, regenerating ex-pasture.
A large perennial with stems growing along the soil surface over 50cm long; dense stands 1-2m tall are formed; mature plants have 4-5 arrow-shaped leaves 75x50 cm; numerous small, creamy, fragrant, flowers crowd a stalk which is surrounded by a pale green sheath; fruit (1cm diameter) are red and fleshy and clustered on the flower stalk (West, 1996).
Often confused with taro, Colocasia esculenta. Alocasia is easily separated as the petiole attaches to the base of the leaf, the petiole attaches to the under surface of the leaf in Colocasia esculenta.
January, February, March, April
Perennial. The leaves die back during spring and during this phase the stalks contain viscous fluid (West, 1996). Seed is produced and vegetative reproduction will occur from fragments. Dispersed by birds (West, 1996).
Celon? or Tahiti? Native in E. Australia, Tropical Asia
Reason for introduction
alocasia: From the Greek a- ‘without’ or ‘lacking’ and locasia ‘lotus root’, refers to its similarity to Colocasia.
Toxins in the tubers and rhizomes but can be removed through cooking.