Gabing Tigre, Zebra pant, Stripped Elephant Ears Plant
Looking for a plant that will make a stylish addition to your home? Look no further than the Alocasia zebrina! This beautiful South East Asian species is currently all the rage, and it’s easy to see why. With its gorgeous patterned stems and glossy green leaves, the Alocasia zebrina is sure to add a touch of sophistication to any space.
And not only is it aesthetically pleasing, but the Alocasia zebrina is also relatively easy to care for. It prefers bright indirect light and consistent temperatures between 15-25 degrees Celsius. So if you’re looking for a plant that’s both beautiful and low-maintenance, the Alocasia zebrina is the perfect choice!
The Alocasia originates from the tropical forests of Philippines and gets its name from its huge elephant-like leaves. The name in Tagalog means the “tiger taro” due to its stripes and resemblance to the Colocasia family which have an edible corm.
Harvesting of the Alocasia zebrina from the wild is strictly forbidden as the plant has been added to the Red List of endangered species. As a matter of fact, if you attempt to collect one from the wild in Phillipines, it can land you in prison for 6 to 10 years! Luckily, the Alocasia zebrina is easily accessible in cultivation and prized as an indoor plant.
Care & Size Guidance
The ideal temperature for this plant is around 20 degrees throughout the year. Water regularly, whenever top few cm of soil feels dry: but tip away any excess at the bottom of the cover pot or tray as the Alocasia doesn’t like to have wet feet.
As the plant can get to considerable sizes in a very short time, make sure to give it plenty of room to expand. When happy, the plant will put out quite a few leaves in a very short span of time. While it grows, the weakest leaves are usually dropped and new ones will emerge. This is because the plant cannot support more than 4-5 leaves at a time.
Fertilise with a balanced organic fertiliser every fortnight during the growing season to provide the plant with enough nutrients to grow quickly.
Mist your Zebra plant every other day to ensure the leaves stay a lush green and dust does not clog the pores of the leaves.
Repotting your zebrina
It may come as a surprise, but Zebrina actually enjoys staying a bit pot bound, so don’t rush repotting it. Repot it only when roots come out at the bottom of the pot and are big enough to push the plastic nursery pot upwards.
Choose a slightly larger pot, and backfill with houseplant compost. Water thoroughly to ensure good contact with the new soil.
A sun loving plant
The Zebra Plant needs a lot of sunlight. Place it in a brightly lit spot, away from direct sunlight though. In a South facing room, place it in indirect light, while in a East facing room it can stay near the window.
While direct sunlight will burn the leaves, a tell tale sign that there’s too much sun, is the leaves become a slightly yellow. As the plant grows, it will try to get as much sunlight as possible, growing longer and longer stems if there is not enough sunlight.
The Alocasia zebrina has the tendency to grow towards the light. Rotating it every month by 90 degrees will ensure that the plant grows upwards, instead of slanted in the direction of the light.