MOVE OVER, BLACK MAGIC . . another member of the family has arrived! Colocasia esculenta, 'Black Runner" (also called 'Black Ruffles') is a first cousin and probably a mutation of the popular 'Black Magic'. 'Black Runner" makes a stunning 6" tall clump with 2" long leaves that are much more ruffled than its better known cousin. The biggest difference, however, is the black snake-like runners that creep along the ground, dropping roots into the soil every few inches and sending up another plant. These MULTIPLY FAST - much faster than the clumping Black Magic - and can fill in a larger area much faster with a 'spider web" of babies - each sending out it's own runners and babies as they grow.
This is a superb new introduction that will soon find its way into gardens around the world - LET YOUR GARDEN BE ONE OF THE FIRST - and soon you will be able to share some of your 'Black Runner" babies with your neighbors and friends!
Elephant ears LOVE WATER - use them around your Koi pond to really add drama or plant them with white Impatiens for a formal look!
BUT - YOU DON'T HAVE TO HAVE A WATER GARDEN OR BOG TO ENJOY THESE PLANTS! I have mine planted in average, sandy soil and they are doing great with regular, average watering. The leaves on these start out green with deep purple/black veins. In the sun, this turns to a deep purple/black over the entire leaf in deep shade, it will stay more green with black veins - it needs some sun to really bring out its full potential. These plants are hardy in zones 8 and warmer bulbs may be lifted in the winter in colder zones and over wintered in containers indoors.
You are buying 1 EXTRA LARGE 'Black Runner" Elephant Ear. The plant is currently from 18 - 22 inches high BUT THE LEAVES/STEMS WILL BE CUT BACK to leave only the shortest leaf or possibly NO LEAVES, BEFORE SHIPPING. I have found that this is the LEAST STRESSFUL way to ship these large plants. They will recover quickly and begin growing new leaves within a week to 10 days after they are established in their new home and will regain their height and vigor within a few weeks if planted according to instructions. Many of these plants have already started to send out runners and, if possible, I will leave the runners on the plants for shipping.
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I include planting instructions with all my plants and seeds.
Piper from Texas, 8/2009:
I just wanted to thank you again for the black EE's. They arrived on Friday, I stuck them in a bucket of water and finally had a few minutes to stick them in pots of dirt Sunday evening. Now, there was no sign of any leaves coming out when I planted them--but Monday morning I had 3 new leaves, one of them fully open. I could not believe it! Even my neighbor was shocked that this happened overnight. I now have a total of 12 leaves on the 5 plants with more to open. I am totally thrilled with the black elephant ears! Just had to tell you. Thanks again!