Full Sun Landscape Trial of Caladiums in Southeastern Louisiana

Tuesday, July 23, 2013
Desert Ballroom: Salons 7-8 (Desert Springs J.W Marriott Resort )
Yan Chen , Hammond Research Station, LSU AgCenter, Hammond Research Station, Hammond, LA
Regina P. Bracy , LSU AgCenter, Hammond Research Station, Hammond, LA
Allen D. Owings , LSU Ag Center, Hammond, LA
Caladiums are known for being shade tolerant and providing bright colors to the long summer season in the South. Many new varieties released by several breeding programs can tolerant full sun.  However, Louisiana landscape professionals are reluctant to use caladiums in full sun because of a lack of information on their performance in southeastern Louisiana.  Two trials were conducted at the Hammond Research Station in 2012 and 2013 with fifty five selected varieties.  The objectives were to evaluate emergence earliness, sun damage, and overall visual quality under full sun and in comparison to partial shade.  Plants were grouped into fancy leaf or lance leaf groups, each having four sub-groups: red, white, pink, or multicolor.  Top performing varieties were selected for each leaf type by leaf color class. Best-in-class varieties were also selected for partial shade.  Changes in plant size, leaf size, number of leaves, and foliage color under full sun vs. shade were also documented and compared.  Results were communicated with the industry.  Growers and landscape professionals from Southeastern Louisiana are using our recommendations to choose caladiums for their production or customers.