Elephant Ear Bulb Rotted

I have been an owner of an elephant ear for the last year. It was my first try, and I left my pot outside all winter. However I did cut it back, but like I said before I didn't know to put it up in a dry area. It's very devastating because I love my plants! Is there any way I can save it? I also had gotten another bulb from a friend, but she pulled it out instead of digging it and may have ripped the main root. It still have some roots you can just notice where the main root was located.


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April 6, 20190 found this helpful

You can remove some mushy spots at the top of the bulb. If there is damage in other areas, the bulb must be discarded.

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April 6, 20190 found this helpful

Unless the bulbs are either total mush (look, smell, feel rotted all the way through--like you touch them in the smoosh between your fingers) or are totally dry, black, and literally disintegrate in your hands, they should grow back.

You don't say which variety you have (there are several) but that should not matter (even the loss of the main root usually does not kill these plants).


These are very hardy (at least where I am in Pittsburgh) and not much can be done to kill them.

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April 7, 20190 found this helpful

I would suggest that when in doubt about anything to do with a new plant (or even an older plant) check out what USDA zone it grows best in so you can know better what climate changes are needed.


Everyone has given good advice about gently removing all the black or soft spots to see if anything is salvageable.
If any good roots are left, you can let it dry out a little (not in direct sunlight) and then try planting it in new soil or even in the ground.
Try the same thing with the bulb you received from your friend as there may be enough of the root system to survive.

Freeze and excess water root rot are the two worst things to happen to elephant ears.


If neither of these things work you may have to look for new bulbs. I have found several types at Walmart and Ace Hardware for $5-6.

Here are a couple of sites that have a lot of information about caring for elephant ears and what to do if they are damaged.



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