Alocasia Jacklyn care is pretty similar to other types of elephant ear plants. Read on for tips on taking care of this plant, where it comes from, how big it can get, and more!
All about Alocasia Jacklyn and caring for this newer variety!
It’s still summer here as I write this, which means I’m still very deeply into my Growing Season Denial in which I acquire beautiful new plants that I put on my patio and have very little room for inside! 10/10 do not recommend. Parting during the fall or watching their slow death over the winter sucks.
But what’s done is done, and one of those plants I’ve acquired this growing season is the lovely Alocasia Jacklyn. I’m a sucker for a pretty elephant ear variety on the patio and have a few.
What is Alocasia Jacklyn?
Alocasia Jacklyn is a newer type of alocasia—often referred to as elephant ear plants. Well, I say “newer,” meaning newer to the houseplant scene. The big brand Costa Farms started mass-producing this lovely lady recently, meaning they are popping up everywhere.
The leaves remind me a lot of alocasia polly leaves with their deep lobes and shape resembling more of an arrowhead than an elephant ear. They are medium green with deep green veining.
Is Alocasia Portei the same as Jacklyn?
I had to look this one up for this post. It’s hard to find a definitive source, but it appears that Alocasia Jacklyn is a mutation of Alocasia Portei. Alocasia Portei hails from the tropical islands of Indonesia.
The mutation is said to be named after the woman who “discovered” it, but I always tend to be a little wary of describing it that way. It’s possible that these plants have grown for a long time in nature and have already been “discovered” by those who live in the area.
I think a better description would be that Alocasia Jacklyn is said to be named after the woman who brought the plant back home to grow. I’ll keep digging on this one and update as I find more.
I also read that this plant can be referred to as Alocasia tandurusa or Alocasia Sulawesi. But I can’t say with certainty that these are the same plants based on what I’ve found online.
Is Alocasia Jacklyn rare?
Alocasia Jacklyn is a newer plant on the houseplant collecting scene, so as I write this, there is a lot of excitement around it. I find that alocasia in general can be a “love them or hate them” type plant, though.
But if you love them, you shouldn’t have that hard of a time getting your hands on a Jacklyn! Anything Costa Farms is growing is likely to appear in many places in the United States. And if your local nurseries don’t have any, you can order them online for very reasonable prices.
Is Alocasia Jacklyn hard to care for?
In general, I would not recommend an alocasia as someone’s first (or even second or third) houseplant. Now, if you live somewhere warm and sunny like Florida…that’s a different story.
But caring for alocasia can be challenging indoors. These plants like a lot of bright, indirect light and THRIVE in high humidity. This can sometimes be an uphill battle in our dry homes where we many times want to keep humidity levels lower.
What kind of light is best?
So let’s jump into the care needs then, shall we? I always cover lighting needs first since light can be a challenge for some plants indoors. Bright, indirect light is required for Jacklyn to grow optimally.
As a tropical plant, it generally does not like direct sunlight. In nature, it likely grows under a dense canopy of trees or other plants. They block a lot of the sun’s harsh rays.
You want to mimic this indoors by putting it in a sunny window. I generally do not have trouble with plants burning, even in my sunniest windows. But if the light source shines from only one side, you’ll probably want to rotate the plant every few weeks.
Outdoors, I generally put my elephant ear plants under a covered patio, in a gazebo or pergola-like structure, or under a dense tree. This helps to filter the light and prevent the leaves from scorching.
You may see this plant referred to as a lower or medium light plant. I would be careful with how little light you give the plant…it will survive in lower light levels, but it probably will get a bit leggy. The stems will get longer and the leaves will get smaller.
I find that the bright shade conditions under the gazebo on my extremely sunny patio are perfect for Jacklyn. She also gets a bit of direct sun as the day progresses and the sun moves up and over the house.
Soil & water needs
Any well-draining soil designed for houseplants will likely provide a suitable home for Jacklyn. Shoot for something that has perlite and bark or some sort of shredded coconut (a good alternative to peat moss) added in.
These things help the soil retain just the right amount of water. When you water the plant, the excess water will flow through the soil and out of the pot’s drainage holes. This helps increase oxygen flow to the roots and prevent root rot.
The soil will retain just the right amount of water to quench your plant’s thirst and not much more. This is exactly what you want.
And speaking of watering, you should water your Alocasia Jacklyn when the top several inches of soil dry out. This could mean a few times a week in the summer and once every two weeks in the winter.
It’s always best to check with your finger or a moisture meter to see how much of the soil has dried out. After you get into a groove with your plant at home in a more stable environment, you’ll be able to get on somewhat of a schedule and know about when it needs watered.
Keep an eye on it in the late fall and winter, though. With shorter days and lower temperatures, even indoors, the plant will need much less water. Keeping the same watering schedule you maintained in the summer will almost certainly kill the plant.
If Jacklyn is developing yellow leaves and dropping leaves and the soil has been consistently wet, the plant is likely overwatered. Let it dry out a bit and trim the affected foliage to see if it bounces back.
Temperature & humidity
Alocasia Jacklyn is a heat and humidity lover. I do recommend keeping the plant in temperatures ranging from the low 70s to the low 90s Fahrenheit. If the low temperatures at night consistently dip into the 50s, the plant will likely begin to suffer.
If you have it outdoors for the summer and temperatures are very high, just monitor the plant to make sure you don’t need to give it more water. Or potentially move it into a shadier spot.
Alocasia in general are incredibly sensitive to low humidity levels. It enjoys far higher-than-normal household humidity levels. That’s why I love alocasia outdoors in our humid Maryland summers!
I would recommend putting Alocasia Jacklyn in a plant room with a dedicated room humidifier. I do not think a pebble tray with water or misting will cut the mustard at all.
You could also consider closing your plant into some sort of glass growing cabinet to keep humidity levels high. Check out my Ikea greenhouse cabinet post for more on how I put one together!
If you notice that the edges or tips of your plant’s leaves are turning brown and crispy, it could be that the air is too dry. You can’t recover the crispy spots, but you can boost the humidity to encourage healthier new growth.
How fast do Alocasia Jacklyn grow?
In the right growing conditions, Alocasia Jacklyn can be a quite prolific grower. If your plant has put out several new leaves, you can start checking the roots of the plant to make sure it isn’t time to size up the pot.
I generally like to wait until my plant is growing roots out of its drainage holes before I size the pot up an inch or two. Or, if I can take the whole plant out of the pot because the roots have circled the pot so many times—it’s time to repot!
How big can Alocasia Jacklyn get?
If you’re taking great care of your plant—and with time—Alocasia Jacklyn can grow to me about 4 feet tall and wide. It doesn’t have a ton of pruning needs, either. Though I like to trim off older unsightly or smaller alocasia leaves as plants mature.
Is Alocasia Jacklyn toxic?
Alocasia contain calcium oxalate crystals, which makes the plant toxic to both humans and pets. No part of the plant should be chewed or consumed. It can lead to serious issues—so always keep this one away from curious kids and animals.
When repotting, know that the plant’s sap can cause mild irritation to human skin for some people. So wear gardening gloves as a preventative measure.
What pests is Alocasia Jacklyn vulnerable to?
I seem to have the most trouble with spider mites on my alocasia plants, especially indoors. I’ve only gotten a handful of alocasia through the winter with no spider mite issues. Read more about spider mites here.
Spider mites LOVE alocasia, and they thrive in warm, dry air. This means that homes with central heating are an absolute breeding ground for them in the winter! Quarantining new plants that could be bringing spider mites in helps prevent a spread.
Adding a humidifier also helps to keep humidity levels high and discourage the environment spider mites thrive in. But when all else fails, I will give my alocasia a thorough spray down with Captain Jack’s Dead Bug brew all over.
Propagating Alocasia Jacklyn
Alocasia plants spread and grow pups through rhizome offsets under the soil’s surface. The main plant will grow offshoots, and you can very easily cut these away from the mother plant at the rhizome level to make a new plant.
Make sure you take as much of the rhizomes root structure as possible with you. Then plant the baby plant in fresh, well-draining soil, water it, give it some decent lighting.