I planted a huge bed of elephant ears and each year they've come back after the cold. This year, after the stalks fell over and yellowed, I cut them down to the ground and covered them with leaves. I'm afraid I've killed the bulbs. Will they come back this year? We live in Diamondhead, Mississippi where the cold weather never gets below 30 F. for a long time. I've raked all the leaves off the bed where my elephant ears are planted but they don't seem to be coming through the dirt.
Elephant Ears Not Coming Up
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
It may be too soon to worry about your elephant ears making their debut. I would give it more time.
But, in the event they don't come up, let's talk about a possible reason. In your planting zone, elephant ears could overwinter in the ground and survive most, but not all, winters. They can survive mild winters if the soil remains relatively dry. They may not survive winters that are really wet and really cold. Would you characterize your recent winter months (Jan-Mar) as wet and cold? A really wet winter could be detrimental if your soil isn't particularly well-draining - the bulbs might be subject to rot. Mulch helps insulate from the cold but it also keeps moisture in which, in a wet winter, might help contribute to rotting bulbs. But, hopefully this is just conjecture and you will see sprouts coming out of the ground soon!
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