Live to Plant

How to Care for Elephant Plant

Updated: June 13, 2022

The Elephant Plant, also known as Alocasia or African Mask Plant, is a popular indoor plant with large, striking leaves. It is a tropical plant native to Southeast Asia and requires specific care to thrive. In this article, we will discuss how to care for an Elephant Plant.

Light Requirements

Elephant Plants require bright, indirect light. They should not be placed in direct sunlight as it can scorch their leaves. If the plant is not getting enough light, its leaves may turn yellow and drop off. Consider placing it near a window that receives filtered sunlight or using artificial lighting.


The Elephant Plant needs to be watered regularly, but not overwatered. Overwatering can lead to root rot and other issues. Check the moisture level of the soil by sticking your finger 1-2 inches into the soil. If it feels dry, it’s time to water the plant. The frequency of watering depends on several factors such as the size of the pot, temperature, and humidity levels. As a general rule, water the Elephant Plant once a week during the growing season and reduce watering during the winter months.


The Elephant Plant prefers high humidity levels. Dry air can cause the tips of its leaves to turn brown and crispy. You can increase humidity by placing a tray of water near the plant or using a humidifier. Another option is to group several plants together as they release moisture through transpiration.


Elephant Plants thrive in well-draining soil that is rich in organic matter. A soil mix that contains peat moss, perlite, and vermiculite is ideal. Avoid using heavy soils that retain too much moisture as they can lead to root rot.


Fertilize the Elephant Plant once a month during the growing season using a balanced fertilizer. Follow the instructions on the package carefully to avoid overfertilization, which can damage the plant.


The Elephant Plant can be propagated through division. Gently remove the plant from its pot and separate the rhizomes (underground stems) into smaller sections. Each section should have at least one leaf and some roots. Plant each section in a pot with fresh soil and water well.

Pests and Diseases

The Elephant Plant is relatively pest-resistant but can be susceptible to spider mites, mealybugs, and scale insects. Check the plant regularly for signs of infestation such as webbing, sticky residue, or tiny insects. If you notice an infestation, isolate the plant and treat it with insecticidal soap or neem oil. The Elephant Plant can also be affected by root rot, bacterial leaf spot, and fungal diseases. Proper watering practices and well-draining soil can help prevent these issues.


Can I keep my Elephant Plant outdoors?

While Elephant Plants prefer indoor conditions, they can be grown outdoors in warm climates with high humidity levels.

Why are the tips of my Elephant Plant’s leaves turning brown?

Brown tips on the leaves can be a sign of low humidity, overfertilization, or underwatering.

How often should I repot my Elephant Plant?

Repotting is only necessary when the plant has outgrown its container or if the soil has become compacted. Repot once every 2-3 years during the growing season.

Can I prune my Elephant Plant?

Yes, pruning can help control the size and shape of the plant. Use sterile pruning shears to remove any dead or damaged leaves or stems.

In conclusion, the Elephant Plant is a beautiful and rewarding addition to any indoor garden. With proper care and attention to its specific needs, it can thrive and provide years of enjoyment.