Read in detail about Alocasia Dragon Tooth care in this comprehensive guide to promote growth for these striking indoor plants.
Learn how to care for Alocasia Dragon Tooth plants with ease as you explore the essential steps to keep these captivating indoor beauties thriving.
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Alocasia Dragon Tooth Information
Alocasia Dragon Tooth, also popular as Alocasia longiloba ‘Dragon Scale’ or Alocasia ‘Dragon Tooth’, is a striking tropical plant famous for its unique leaf texture and pattern.
It is derived from the Alocasia baginda species, which is native to the rainforests of Borneo. It is believed to be a naturally occurring hybrid or a mutation of the parent species.
Alocasia Dragon Tooth features large, heart-like leaves with a prominent texture resembling dragon scales. The leaves have a dark green to blackish-green color and are adorned with contrasting silver veins, which add to its dramatic appeal. The leaf edges are serrated or toothed, hence its common name, “Dragon Tooth.”
This Alocasia variety typically grows to a moderate size, with mature plants reaching a height of around 1 to 2 feet (30 to 60 cm) and a spread of 1 to 2 feet (30 to 60 cm).
Botanical Name: Alocasia longiloba ‘Dragon’s Tooth’
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Propagating Alocasia Dragon Tooth
Alocasia Dragon Tooth can be propagated through division or rhizome cuttings.
- Division: When the plant has outgrown its pot and has multiple stems or offsets, it can be divided. Carefully remove the plant from its pot and gently separate the rhizomes, making sure each division has a healthy root system and at least one stem. Use a clean, sharp knife or shears to make clean cuts. Plant each division into a separate pot filled with well-draining soil, making sure the stems are positioned at the same depth as before. Water the divisions lightly and place them in a warm, humid location with bright, indirect light.
- Rhizome Cuttings: Select a healthy rhizome with at least one stem and some roots. Using a clean, sharp knife or shears, cut a section of the rhizome a few inches in length. Make sure each cutting has at least one node (a small bump where leaves emerge). Plant the cutting horizontally or slightly angled in a pot filled with well-draining soil, burying the node below the soil surface. Keep the soil slightly moist and place the pot in a warm, humid environment with bright, indirect light.
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Requirements for Growing Alocasia Dragon Tooth
Light plays a crucial role in the well-being of Alocasia Dragon Tooth, necessitating bright indirect light for approximately six hours daily to maintain their health.
While Alocasia can tolerate lower light conditions or fewer hours of bright indirect light, ample exposure to bright indirect light is essential for the plant to thrive truly.
Selecting the appropriate soil is crucial for Alocasia Dragon Tooth. Opt for well-draining soil to ensure the plant’s roots don’t remain excessively wet.
A simple and effective soil recipe for this plant consists of equal parts potting soil, peat, and perlite, with the option of substituting coarse sand for perlite to enhance drainage.
Avoid using heavy or compacted soil, as it retains too much moisture for the Alocasia Dragon’s Tooth’s liking.
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Alocasia Dragon Tooth has moderate water requirements, preferring soil that is not completely dry but also not waterlogged. It is advisable to allow the topsoil to dry out before you water the plant again.
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Alocasia houseplants thrive in warmer temperatures, ideally ranging between 60-80°F (15-27°C). It is important to avoid exposing them to drafts that can occur near windows and doors, as well as keep them away from heating or cooling vents.
Alocasia Dragon Tooth greatly benefits from high humidity levels. To cater to their preference for increased moisture, it is advisable to position the plants near a humidifier or create a pebble tray by placing a tray filled with water and pebbles beneath the plant.
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Alocasia Dragon Tooth Care
Use a balanced, water-soluble houseplant fertilizer, such as a 10-10-10 or 20-20-20 formula. Dilute the fertilizer according to the manufacturer’s instructions, typically at a rate of ¼ to ½ strength.
Apply every four to six weeks during the growing season, which is usually from spring to summer. Reduce or cease fertilization during the winter months when the plant’s growth slows down.
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Pests and Diseases
Excessive watering is often the main cause of diseases in plants. Although the Alocasia Dragon Tooth is not highly susceptible to diseases, it can still occur due to watering practices. Bacterial and fungal infections thrive in moist conditions, so it is important to avoid excess soil or leaf moisture. Overwatering can also lead to root rot.
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Alocasia Dragon Tooth is known to contain calcium oxalate crystals, which can be toxic to humans and pets if ingested. These crystals can cause irritation and discomfort if they come into contact with the mouth, throat, or gastrointestinal tract.
Place the plant in a location where it’s out of reach of children and pets to prevent accidental ingestion of leaves or plant parts.