Alocasia Baginda is a rhizomatous plant native to Southern Asia and Eastern Australia. It is part of the Alocasia genus and Araceae family and boasts beautiful, exotic emerald-green leaves with prominent venation. This unique appearance is what earned it its name – Dragon Scale.
Alocasia Baginda Dragon scale care guide
Dragon Scale comprises a number of Alocasia varieties as they have been extensively cultivated and hybridized.
Some popular varieties include Alocasia Silver Dragon, Alocasia Pink Dragon, and Alocasia Black Velvet.
Alocasia Baginda plant is relatively low-maintenance and make for lovely indoor houseplants.
While they are easy to care for, they still have specific growth requirements. To ensure your plant is properly cared for, here is an insightful Alocasia Dragon Scale Care Guide.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Care Tips
Alocasia plants make for lovely indoor houseplants. As previously mentioned, they are relatively low maintenance. While this is true, completely ignoring them can lead to a number of complications.
To ensure a healthy dragon scale that will grow green and tall, here are some basic Alocasia plant care tips.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Light Requirements
Alocasia baginda dragon scale grows best in bright, indirect lighting conditions. It advised that the two extremes, direct sunlight and complete shade, be avoided.
Direct sunlight can burn the plant’s delicate leaves, while too much shade will hinder its growth.
If your Alocasia Baginda is kept indoors, place it near a north, east or west-facing window. Note that direct sunlight should be filtered through a sheer curtain.
Moreover, you may also rotate the plant to ensure that all parts receive adequate light.
If your plant is being kept outdoors, ensure that it is placed in a partially shaded area. Alternatively, you can also consider using an artificial growing light if the plant is placed in a darker room.
Signs your Alocasia Dragon Scale Needs More Light
There are a number of problems that may arise which would suggest that your Dragon Scale is receiving too little light. These include:
- Yellow/brown spots on the leaves
- Plant rust
- Drooping stem – starts leaning towards the light source
- Plant producing small leaves – new growth is underwhelming
- No new growth, particularly outside of winter
- Soil not drying out for weeks
Alocasia Dragon Scale Temperature Requirements
Alocasia Baginda thrives in temperatures between 16ºC and 27ºC (61ºF and 81ºC). Given their tropical origins, they prefer hot, humid weather conditions, as opposed to cold and dry.
Should your Dragon scale be in an area that is too cold, it will stop growing and begin to look unwell.
This means that the plant has entered its dormant stage, which is similar to a state of hibernation.
As such, it is recommended that you keep your plant indoors in a humid, temperature-controlled room.
This is especially important during the winter months. Also, ensure that your plant is clear of any direct drafts such as heaters, fans, or air conditioners.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Humidity
Much like other tropical species, the Alocasia Baginda loves high humidity. The most ideal humidity level for these plants is between 60% and 80%.
If your plant is placed in an excessively humid environment, it may be attacked by pests and fungal diseases.
To achieve higher humidity levels, place your Alocasia Baginda on a pebble tray filled with water. As the water in the tray evaporates, it will provide moisture to your plant.
Ensure that the roots of your plant are not touching the water as this will result in root rot.
Another great way to improve humidity levels is with an indoor humidifier.
Alocasia Scale Fertilizer Requirements
Alocasia Baginda grows best when fed with balanced organic fertilizers made specifically for its type.
Among the many feed types available, slow-release fertilizer or water-soluble fertilizer are best.
If you use a water-soluble fertilizer, I recommended that you feed your Alocasia two to three times a week during spring and summer. If you have opted for a slow-release fertilizer, you may only need to feed twice a month.
Regardless of what fertilizer you choose, ensure that it contains equal amounts of nitrogen, potassium, and phosphate.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Soil Requirements
For your Alocasia Baginda to flourish and reach its full potential, it needs the right soil type. These beautiful rainforest plants love moist, well-drained soil.
For your Dragon scale to thrive, use a potting mix that is porous, chunky, and loose, as this type does not hold excessive amounts of water.
Moreover, it should provide good aeration with considerable draining properties.
An aroid mix or jungle mix is recommended, along with a slow-release, organic fertilizer as mentioned above.
Adding compost to the soil may also aid in nurturing growth. Should the soil look too heavy, simply add some perlite or sand. This will help you achieve the right soil texture for your Alocasia Baginda.
Pruning Alocasia Dragon Scale
There are a number of reasons why you may need to prune your Dragon Scale. The most common is to stop the spread of a fungal infection or disease.
Another common reason is because of cold damage. While Alocasia plants generally remain ever green under warmer conditions, sustained cold weather can lead to yellow, droopy leaves and a mushy stem.
Should your Alocasia Dragon Scale show any signs of damage, infection, or diseases, follow these simple steps:
- Check for damaged leaves and stems.
- Cut through the fleshy stem at the base of any damaged leaves.
- Gently create a U-shaped cut at the leaf petioles.
- Trim away any blemishes, following the natural shape of the leaf.
Another reason why you may want to prune your Dragon Scale is size control. Regardless of the reason, be sure to use a sterilized knife and to wear protective gloves. Alocasia plants are known to be toxic and can cause skin irritation.
Also, avoid touching your eyes or mouth as ingesting the plant’s toxins could lead to numbing, swelling, nausea, delirium, and diarrhea.
How Often Do You Water Alocasia Dragon Scale?
As it is a tropical species, this plant can be quite fussy when it comes to its watering requirements. While it needs frequent watering, overwatering or underwatering can be an issue.
To ensure your Alocasia is receiving the right amount of water, check the top one or two inches of the plant’s soil.
If it is slightly dry, it is recommended that you water it. You should not allow the soil to completely dry up. Another good way to gauge when you need to water is by using a moisture meter.
Regarding frequency, Dragon scale requires different amounts of water during the dry and wet seasons.
During summer, I recommended that you water your plant two to three times per week. In the winter, you may cut back the frequency to once a week.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Growing Cycle
Alocasia dragon scale is an evergreen plant. This suggests that it stands green and tall throughout its lifecycle during all seasons of the year provided it is well cared for.
From when the rhizome is planted, the Alocasia goes through the following growing cycle:
- Week 1-3: Plant the rhizome. Ensure it is in a warm and humid environment and water it as needed.
- Week 3-5: Tiny roots start to appear.
- Week 6-8: Shoots begin to sprout which will soon begin to grow into leaves.
- Month 3-6: Keep feeding and watering appropriately and watch your Alocasia grow tall and beautiful.
When well cared for, Alocasia Baginda can grow relatively fast, especially during spring and summer.
In winter, the growth rate declines. It is also normal for the plant to become dormant during this time and stop growing altogether.
If this happens, do not overfeed your plant. Simply give it time, water as needed, and let it rest through the season.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Blooming
During its flowering seasons, namely summer and spring, the Alocasia Baginda may give rise to lovely light butter-yellow blooms.
As it is part of the Araceae family, the plant’s inflorescences are not too showy. Moreover, blooms last up to three days and are generally visible around 30cm from the soil line.
In some instances, blooming flowers may suggest that the Alocasia is stressed. This may be a result of irregular watering, root rot, and environmental shock.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Propagation
I recommended that you propagate your Alocasia Baginda during the growing season, spring and early summer.
To successfully propagate your plant, follow these simple steps:
- Put on protective gloves and sterilize your knife or blade to prevent the spread of any diseases.
- Gently remove the plant from its pot and rinse the roots to remove any excess soil.
- With your knife or blade, cut a plant division from a healthy parent plant.
- Place the new baby plant into its own pot with slow-release fertilizer around the base of the stem.
- Water well. Ensure that the soil has good drainage and keep it moist for a few weeks without overwatering.
- Repot the parent plant and water thoroughly. We will detail how to repot your Alocasia Stingray in the section to follow.
After about 60 days you will notice new leaves sprouting from the baby plant. After 90 days, the plant should have many new leaves.
At this point, water twice per week in moderation and watch the baby Alocasia grow.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Repotting
Alocasia Beginda do not require frequent repotting and grow well when pot bound. Repotting once a year (or every two years in some cases) during spring is recommended when the plant has just come out of its dormancy phase.
Other times you may need to repot is if the plant has picked up an infection or has outgrown its current pot.
To repot your Alocasia, follow these easy steps:
- Grab a pot that is at least 2 inches larger than its current one. Ensure that the pot has drainage holes on its base. If the pot was previously used, wash it out with a 5-10% bleach solution and rinse thoroughly before using it again.
- Water your plant about an hour before repotting to avoid transplant shock.
- Place a coffee filter over the drainage holes of the new pot and begin filling the bottom with soil.
- Inspect the roots of the plant. If the roots are tangled, try untangling them or cut them with a sterilized knife or blade.
- Place your Dragon Scale into its new home. Add soil until the root ball is completely covered. Lastly, water well and be patient.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Common Problems
Even if you’re taking perfect care of your Dragon Scale plant, there are still several problems that may arise.
Below are some common problems that your Alocasia may experience, as well as how to fix them.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Root Rot
The main cause of root rot with Dragon scale plants is overwatering. Root rot develops due to lack of light and aeration, as well as insufficient drainage holes.
If your Alocasia Baginda experiences root rot, you can remedy the problem with these simple steps:
- Gently remove the Dragon Scale plant from the soil and carefully wash its roots.
- With a sterilized knife, cut away the affected parts of the roots.
- Dispose of the old, infected soil.
- Wash the plant with a 5-10% diluted bleach solution.
- Dip the healthy roots in a fungicide solution.
- Repot your plant as previously discussed. Ensure that the soil is aerated and that its drainage capacity is sufficient.
To avoid stressing the roots, do not feed the plant until it has fully recovered. Only water when the surface of the soil is slightly dry.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Leaves Turning Yellow
Alocasia leaves turning yellow are generally due to over or underwatering. Overwatering leads to water-clogging and root rot which can lead to yellowing leaves. Another contributor to yellowed leaves is nutrient deficiency.
To fix the problem, start by identifying the exact cause of the yellowing leaves. From there you can remedy the problem based on the cause, be it overwatering, underwatering, lack of light or a nutrient deficiency.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Dropping Leaves
It is common for Alocasia Baginda to drop some of its yellow or floppy leaves. This may be due to the plant managing and distributing nutrition for new growth.
If your Dragon scale is dropping an excessive amount of leaves from a number of locations, it may be diseased.
To remedy this it is recommended that you review your plant’s watering schedule to check for over or underwatering. Also, ensure that the Alocasia is receiving adequate light.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Brown Spots
Another problem your Dragon Scale may experience is the formation of brown spots.
Causes include overwatering, insufficient humidity levels, and xanthomas, a common disease which will be detailed in the section to follow.
Brown spots may appear on the top side of the plant, or along the underside.
If you notice brown spots on your Alocasia, it is best to remedy the situation as soon as possible to prevent it from progressing into a fungal disease.
Fixing this problem is easy. Simply remove the leaves that have brown spots and use a fungicide to prevent any further spreading. Moreover, be sure to avoid overwatering.
A common disease that Alocasia Baginda experience is a disease known as Xanthomas. It generally appears as dark-brown or black spots on the upper or lower sides of the plant’s leaves.
The spots also tend to have a yellow-colored rim surrounding them.
To prevent this, avoid overwatering your Dragon Scale. As previously discussed, check that the top 1 to 2 inches of the soil is slightly dry before watering.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Spider Mites & Other Pests
As Alocasias are poisonous, they are not exactly pest magnets. Their stems, however, attract a number of pests, namely spider mites, mealy bugs, aphids, and scales.
To prevent infestation, spray your plant with an insecticidal soap every few weeks. This generally kills pests on contact. It will also prevent dust from settling on the plant.
Should your Dragon Scale be infested already, implement the following steps:
- Isolate the Dragon Scale from other plants to prevent further spreading.
- Rinse both sides of its leaves and stem with warm soapy water.
- Use diluted neem oil to rinse the surface and spray with clean water.
- Wipe the leaves off with a clean cloth.
- Mist the Alocasia Baginda to raise the humidity. This will further aid in eliminating spider mites, as they prefer dry conditions.
A good time to check for pests is when you are dusting the leaves of your Alocasia plant.
Alocasia Baginda Best Products
Providing your Dragon Scale with the right home, food, and light is essential for its development. Below are some of the best products to ensure the growth of your Alocasia plant.
Best Fertilizer For Alocasia Baginda Care
The Alocasia Dragon Scale thrives best when an organic, slow-release fertilizer is added to the soil.
Another good option is a water-based fertilizer. To provide your Alocasia Baginda with the nutrients it needs to grow green and tall, check out this premium indoor plant food by Earthpods.
Best Pots For Alocasia Baginda
For Alocasia plants, a non-porous plastic pot is recommended as ceramic or unglazed clay pots tend to wick moisture away from the soil.
It is also important that the pot has sufficient drainage holes. For a lovely home for your Alocasia Baginda, check out this plastic plant container by Growneer.
Best Alocasia Baginda Basket
If you’re looking for a lovely, decorative plant cover, check out this Natural Craft Large Size Seagrass Belly Basket.
These pretty baskets are 100% handmade and are ideal for your indoor plants. They can also be used as a bag on your next trip, or to store laundry, toys, and other items.
Best Light For Alocasia Baginda
Alocasia Baginda generally require indirect, filtered sunlight. Alternatively, you can use an artificial light source.
This may be necessary during the winter months in cases where there is not much sunlight available. To ensure that your Dragon Scale is receiving adequate light, check out this EZORKAS dimmable light for indoor plants.
Best Soil For Alocasia Baginda
Alocasia Baginda naturally thrive in rainforests and as such, love moist, well-drained soil.
Along with a slow-release, organic fertilizer, it is recommended that you use an Aroid or Jungle mix. To ensure your Dragon Scale grows well, try out this Miracle-Gro indoor potting mix.
Alocasia Dragon Scale Frequently Asked Questions
Now that you know all about Alocasia care, you are pretty much set. For some additional information, here are the answers to some commonly asked questions.
Is Alocasia Dragon Scale Safe For Cats?
Alocasia plants contain insoluble oxalate crystals, making them quite poisonous to cats. Much like with humans and dogs, ingesting these toxins can have a number of detrimental effects on your cat.
These include damage to the throat, mouth, and stomach, as well as swelling of the eyes, tongue, and esophagus.
Other common symptoms include excessive drooling, vomiting, nausea, and loss of appetite.
If your cat displays any of the symptoms mentioned, take it to the vet immediately as it should be treated as a medical emergency.
Can Alocasia Live Indoors?
Alocasia Baginda thrive indoors provided their light requirements are met. It is important that the plant receives indirect, filtered sunlight, as mentioned previously.
If this is not possible, ensure that the plant is receiving light via an artificial light source.
It is also important that the plant is placed in an area with sufficient humidity levels. If humidity levels are low, consider using a pebble tray or placing it in the bathroom.
Can You Root Alocasia Baginda in Water?
Alocasia Baginda can grow in water. Just ensure that the plant is kept away from direct sunlight as it may promote the growth of algae.
Moreover, it is recommended that you frequently change the plant’s water, as well as clean its pot and add diluted liquid fertilizer.
Why is My Alocasia Not Growing?
Alocasia Baginda may stop growing as a result of being exposed to too much light or receiving too little light.
Another reason may be that your Dragon Scale has entered its dormancy phase, which usually takes place during winter.
Alocasia Plant Care Tips – Final Thoughts
The Alocasia Baginda, with its emerald, green, metallic foliage, and ribbed texture, can brighten up any corner of the house.
To ensure that your plant stays green and lives long and happily, it is important that you follow the care tips outlined in this article.
While Alocasia makes for lovely indoor plants, note that they are poisonous and very dangerous when ingested. As such, ensure that your plant is kept away from children and pets.
If you love elephant ear plants, consider adding an Alocasia Wentii to your home along with your Dragon Scale.
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