Caladiums (Caladium hortulanum) are members of the Araceae family and they originated in the Amazon basin in Brazil.. It is therefore very important to keep them warm. When your bulbs arrive it is important that you unpack them immediately, as they are live plants. Store in a warm room with good air circulation until ready to plant--(70 to 80 degrees F) for long-term storage, 70 degrees is optimal.
Caladiums have proven to be excellent bedding plants for shade and partial shade locations. Although the plants develop more intense leaf color in partial shade, they will grow and survive in full sun if provided adequate water. Soils with high organic matter are ideal, but Caladiums will perform well in most
any soil with a decent water holding capacity, as long as they have good drainage. It is best to wait until the soil warms to 65 degrees before planting. Many people add some bone meal to the soil, which seems to help the plant form a strong root system and stem.

Many people think the larger the tuber the larger or better the plant. In general, a larger bulb will produce more and larger leaves quicker than a smaller bulb. But over the season smaller bulbs, with proper care, will produce the desired effect. They should be planted so that about an inch and a half of soil covers the tuber. The spacing of the tubers depends upon the size of the tuber planted and how full you want the effect to be. Generally speaking, for a full appearance, plant two #1 bulbs 2 to 4 inches apart, then space these plantings 12 to 18 inches apart.

Again, it is very important not to plant the bulbs too early. Later is better than to early. Wait until all chance of frost is past. Caladiums may also be grown in pots, indoors or out. They can be started earlier in pots in a warm part of your home and then moved outside when you desire. Also, the leaves are beautiful and very long-lasting in floral arrangements!

For a bushier potted plant (shorter and with more leaves) remove the terminal, or main, bud. This is called de-eyeing, and is common in commercial Caladium pot production.
Moisten the soil well when planting tubers. Soil should be kept slightly moist until sprouting occurs. Usually the initial watering at planting time is enough until first sprouts appear. After sprouting, water often and well. When planting, mix in some ordinary garden fertilizer, such as 6-6-6 or 8-8-8, according to package directions. Any house plant fertilizers will work well.