Q.

Why are my caladium leaves not turning out very good after two beautiful ones?

Zone 4207 | sarrin added on January 10, 2019 | Answered

So I bought a caladium a few weeks back & initially it all died off & then came back with two fully developed leaves, big a beautiful & then it flowered twice & now every leaf since is feeling a tad deformed & not like the first ones? What am I doing wrong? I am growing in my very well lit bathroom with heaps of humidity.

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Downtoearthdigs
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on January 11, 2019

Caladium love lots of light and heat. Being a heat loving tropical plant with leaves that are quite thin they also require high humidity, especially while the new leaves are forming.
Every week, from spring through July, you can use a water soluble 6/6/6 fertilizer to promote strong foliage growth. If you have repotted your tubers into fresh organically rich medium you can wait for the new growth to reach 2-3” before feeding as there will be enough nutrients in the dirt to get it going.
Leaves curling under and brown or deformed leaves and leaf tips can be a sign of too little humidity.
Most pests will leave a Caladium alone but you may notice leaves curling, twisting or appearing stunted. This may be evidence of aphids, Mealybugs can also be attracted to Caladium. The leaves appear stunted and you may notice a sticky trail of honeydew on the leaves. Thrips and whiteflies may also be a problem. Spider mites could also be a pest on this plant. There are easy ways to combat these pests so be sure to periodically inspect the leaves for any infestation so you can control things early. One bonus is that this is a seasonal plant indoors and any pest issues will not kill the plant. It will naturally die back in the late fall and the pests will be gone by spring when the new shoots emerge from the underground tubers.

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