The main physical difference is where the stem meets the leaf. Fancy Caladiums have a stem towards the center, while strap Caladiums have a stem that meets at the edge. Fancy-leaf caladiums generally have large heart-shaped leaves, sometimes growing to more than a foot long. Strap-leaf varieties typically have narrower arrow- or lance-shaped foliage. Plants are more compact and a bit more cold tolerant.
Let’s learn more about the differences between the two Caladium leaf types.
The following are characteristics generally associated with Fancy Leaf Group when comparing it to the Lance (Strap) Leaf or Strap (Ribbon) leaf group. However, Caladiums are highly variable with exceptions occurring with almost all noted characteristics.
1) Petiole (leaf stem) attached within the blade of the leaf blade
2) Leaves tend to be larger and heart shaped
3) Tend to have a more upright habit
4) Tend to be less sun tolerant
5) Tend to develop fast
6) Tend to be taller
7) Tend to be less cold tolerant
8) Tend to last for shorter periods in the landscape
9) Tend to have shorter crop times
10) From a tuber production standpoint, tend to have the highest yields of the various caladium groups thus are the least costly in the market
11) Tend to be more apically dominant. More varieties need de-eyeing to make nice pot habit
12)Leaf lobes partially fused near the petiole
The following are characteristics ascribed to the Caladium Strap Leaf when comparing it to the Fancy Leaf or Strap Leaf (Ribbon) group. Within each group characteristic, there are many notable exceptions.
1) Petiole (leaf stem) attached at or near the edge of the leaf blade.
2) Leaves tend to be more elongate arrow head shaped, and generally smaller
3) More spreading , less upright, habit
4) Tend to be more sun tolerant
5) Develop over longer periods
6) Tend to be shorter
7) Tend to be more cold tolerant
8) Tend to last longer periods of time in the landscape
9) Tend to have longer crop times
10) From a tuber production standpoint, tend to have lower yields than Fancy Leaved types thus making them higher priced in the market
11) Tend to be less apically dominant
12) Lobes not fused or only slightly fused near the petiole and leaves tend to have intermediate to small lobes
Learn more about Caladium Care
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