How Fast Does The Elephant Ears Plant Grow?

Elephant ear plants (colocasia also known as Alocasia) is a huge tropical beauty with beautiful leaves that will make any room seem tropical or even more like the lushness of a rain forest.

The best thing about the plant’s speedy expansion. This makes it an ideal alternative if you do not have time to sit for five years until your home’s appearance gets better.

A planted outdoor elephant ear plant can reach 8 feet in height. It also has a growth rate of between 3 and 5 feet each year. The majority of growth happens in summer. It takes approximately 2 years to mature fully. However, if the plant were potted, it would develop at a slower rate of between 1 and two feet every year, because of the soil’s limited capacity as well as other nutrients.

It is evident that the elephant ear plant is a rapidly growing tropical plant. However, it requires the proper conditions to allow for its rapid growth. Keep reading to find out about the elements that affect the rate of growth and the best ways to make use of these factors.

How Fast Do Elephant Ears Grow Indoors?

How long will it take to allow Elephant Ears to reach to their full size?

Underside of a Colocasia variety leaf

Factors that Influence the Growth rate of elephant Ears

Type of Soil

Elephant ear plants thrives best in organic soil with adequate water. A sufficient quantity of water needed to keep the elephant ear plant’s huge leaves. Along with a adequate drainage when potted and a pH that is between 5.5 up to 7.0.


If you place the elephant ear plant in humid soil it will be affected by the lack of water in the course of time (dying leaves, broken roots). Particularly if you don’t have the enough time to feed your soil.

It is therefore better to avoid this issue by making sure the soil you plant is properly well-watered. Instead of pouring water directly from the top of the plant.

Be sure to regularly water during summer (2 to three times every week). Don’t forget to water your garden at least each two weeks. The soil could be water-retentive, but it still requires water.


Fertilizing the elephant ear plant an excellent method to meet its high nutritional requirements. Particularly if you’re trying to revive the plant after it’s been badly damaged.

But, it is important to avoid excessively fertilizing it as it can result in severe symptoms, such as the loss of leaves and color changes. In the end, the growth of your plant will slow down.


Despite its huge leaves and thirst for water, the elephant ear plant is still at risk of being overwatered.

How? The soil can get too moist for the roots to manage If you keep the same frequency of watering all year round even though your plant is exposed to different weather conditions (such as hot summers, cold winters and betweens). This results in edema. and overwatering could cause root decay.

It is essential to keep your elephant ear plant watered in accordance with the season to prevent this issue. As we’ve said before in the event of a hot summer, the frequency of watering will be more frequent than during winter.

For instance, since the soil is prone to drying out in this time of year You can keep your plant’s elephant ears hydrated every week twice.

It is recommended to water your plants at least once a month in winter. Since the soil holds more water in this time.

Pest Infestation

The growth of the elephant ear plant is at risk from sap sucking insects like mealybugs and Aphids. They can weaken the stems and leaves. The plant is unable to react effectively to “favorable conditions.” The leaves will start to droop and curl due to the infestation of insects.

Diseases can Slow Affect Growth Rate

The growth of the elephant ear is more susceptible to fungal and bacterial infections than insect infestation. Because it is possible to treat an outbreak at any time and return the elephant ear plant back to the glory it once was with minimal effort. In the end, it will expand at a rate that was almost or similar to prior to the infestation.

If your plant is under attack from disease revving it is difficult and the plant will be in danger of dying. It is possible that your plant won’t grow as it should even after having been rejuvenated.

Pythium roots disease for instance, can be caused by a fungal infection which is dormant in soil. If you water your plant too much the fungus becomes active and causes severe damage to the root.

Over Exposure to Sunlight

There are many varieties of plants with elephant ears, such like colocasia or Alocasia. Each is a different preference for the amount of sunlight suitable to support its rapid growth rate.

Certain of them will do very well under full sunlight and others would do well in partial shade. The wrong kind of exposure to sunlight can cause your elephant’s ear to be underperforming in terms of its growth rate.

How? A plant called elephant ear that needs indirect sunlight won’t do well in full sun because it could lead to sunburn. This not only causes burning of the stems and leaves but can also harm the plant on an individual scale. This can result in a slowing of growth.

But, if you put the elephant’s ear tree which needs the sun’s direct light in a partially shaded space, it will not develop properly.

Due to the absence of direct sunlight could result in the photosynthetic process of the plant to not be sufficient to support the plant’s overall growth.

Surrounding Environment Plays a Vital Role

The elephant ear plant is native to the tropics as well as rainforests, both of which are generally humid and hot environments. To prevent excessive transpiration from an atmosphere that is dry the plant’s surroundings must be akin to the tropical or the rainforest in order for it to develop at its anticipated speed of growth.

Therefore it is recommended to keep the space humid. This can be done with a humidifier, misting using a spray bottle or encircling the elephant ear plant with other plants.

Do Elephant Ears develop more effectively in water or soil?

Both water and soil are ideal environments for the development of elephant ears however, the soil is superior. Because it supplies the elephant ear plant with greater amounts of natural nutrients, it can develop much more quickly than water or a swampy area.

Elephant ear plants, on contrary, are propagated by the water. Elephant ears, like colocasia, thrive in a partially submerged area , or perhaps in the pond.

How Do you Speed up Elephant Ears Growth?

There’s no magic wand, or secret formula to boost the growth rate of your elephant ear plant. Only one way you can get the speedy growth you desire is to ensure that the elephant’s ear is flourishing under the right conditions.

Plant In Full Direct or Direct Sunlight

To maximize the benefits from your plants, it is essential expose your elephant ears to the appropriate amount of sunlight. For example, the Alocasia requires indirect sunlight in order to flourish, similar to how the colocasia requires direct sunlight in order to flourish.

If you switch treatments, the two kinds of plants with elephant ears will perform poorly and will most likely require time to mature fully.

Use A Grow Light

If you are unable to set up your plant to get the adequate lighting or you aren’t able to regulate the amount of sunlight it receives, make use of a grow light that can effectively trigger the plant’s photosynthesis mechanism.

It is extremely convenient and takes the strain of having to adjust the plant to ensure optimal sunlight exposure for owners who are busy.

Grow lights are an ideal way to provide your plants with lighting in the winter months. They are also great to revive plants that are badly damaged.

Note The elephant ear plant is typically from the tropics, therefore they will be exposed to light rays of an intensity that fluctuates between 400-800 footcandles.

Fertilize Regularly

Since your plants are potted, they will have lesser access to nutrition than non-potted outside plants. This means that the plant that is not potted will grow larger and more quickly than the one that is potted. If you wish for your colocasia or Alocasia potted to develop as quickly as an unpotted plant is recommended to fertilize it. The most effective fertilizer is a liquid fertilizer 10-10-10.

Consider Pruning Early On

The trimming of your elephant plant’s ear’s weak or dead parts will stimulate the growth of new. In turn, the general germination is quick.

If it is done during the dormancy time the procedure can benefit (winter). This will ensure that the elephant ear plant will focus on growth in the spring and summer months rather instead of feeding leaves and dead veins.

Transplant At The Right Time

The best time to transplant your elephant ear plant is in spring. to transfer the elephant’s ear plants. In this period, the tuber of this plant expands and spreads rapidly. It is also necessary to have no signs of frost in the soil. An older elephant ear plant is also easier to transplant.

Use A Large Enough Container

Due to the plant’s rapid growth rate, the plant’s container might not be big enough to hold it all. This means that the overall growth of the plant is hindered. If your elephant ear plant isn’t growing to the size you want It is recommended to plant it in the larger pot.

How to Revive Overfeed Elephant Ears

It is possible to add lots of fertilizers to the elephant ear plant in order to boost the growth rate if you’re in a hurry. This is a risky option as it could result in excessive feeding.

The signs like the leaves turning brown or the appearance of a white crust on your soil should be taken care of. In this case, you must consider changing your conditions for your plant.

How to Revive Your Elephant Ears From Overfeeding

Step 1 Step one: Remove the Fertilizer

If you want to revive an elephant ear plant which is overfed The first step is to eliminate the fertilizers that are in excess. If they’re visible, take out a portion of the soil to eliminate the earlobes.

Step Two: Drain Out Fertilizers

It’s time to flush out the visible remnants of fertilizer after physically removing visible fertilizer. The best method to accomplish it is filling the container half way with water, and let it dry. Repeat this process four times in order to make sure that no fertiliser remains on the ground.

Be aware that if it’s in your garden, you can sprinkle the soil with water around the plant’s root. The pressure will force fertilizers out of the reach from your root system.

Step Three: Prune Your Plant

Because of overfeeding, certain parts of your plants could be severely damaged as they shrink. Therefore, use sterilized blades to cut the plant’s branches so that new growth can occur.

Step Four: Cease Fertilizing Your Plant

The elephant ear plant recuperating from the excessive feeding. It is best to keep the plant for 3-4 weeks to ensure that the roots can rest and not become stressed.

Fiveth step: Re-pot

If your plant appears to be unredeemable, it is recommended to repot it. However, only after leaching the pot that was previously used since this will greatly decrease the time to recover for your plants.

How Can We Get The Watering Right?

Water More Frequently During The Summer

It is recommended to water your plants twice per week throughout the summer months. Since the soil evaporates water faster. This means that it is necessary to make sure that the soil is damp for a longer duration. It is recommended to water twice per week. This is also recommended for plants that require lots of nutrients, like the elephant ears.

Reduce the amount of water you use in the winter months.

Due to the cold weather that is causing the soil to dry out, water escapes in a slower manner in winter. In the end, excessive watering can result in root damage. Therefore it is recommended to water your plant only when the soil is dry is the most effective method.

Things To Consider for Pruning

Pests and Diseases

If your plant has been devastated by pests or disease You should think about pruning. This is also part of the healing process. This procedure will stop the spread of any disease or insect.

The Right Season

Pruning at any time during the year can negatively impact the rate of growth of your plant. Therefore, when you decide to prune, you should do it in the dormancy time of your plant.

If you are looking for the elephant ear plant it is best to wait until the latter part of summer or mid-winter. Because the early and mid-summer months are when the majority of growth occurs. Therefore, it is important to not allow the growth to be stopped.

Key Takeaways

  • The elephant ear plant grows at a rapid rate
  • It could reach to 5 feet within two to three years.
  • Elephant ear plants can be found both in water and soil (or in swampy regions)
  • It is possible to speed up growth by fertilizing it and giving it constant maintenance (such as cutting and transplanting if needed)
  • Elephant ears are more likely to not come completely back from a fungal infection.


Went from a bad gardener to a half-decent one over 10+ years. Super happy to share my tips and tricks with you :)