Alocasia sanderiana, is a plant that has unique leaves, from the Araceae family. This plant is known as the “kris plant”, which is endemic to Misamis Occidental and Bukidnon in the Philippines.
Found in 1884 by W. Bull Alocasia with the initial name Xanthosoma derived from the Greek ‘Xanthos’ meaning “yellow” and ‘soma’ which means “body”. The specific name “sanderiana” was given in Sander’s memory. There is often confusion between the genus Alocasia and Xanthosoma, which is native to the tropics of the Americas.
The Alocasia sanderiana plant, currently in the forests of the Philippines itself is very rare to find, therefore this plant is listed as “endangered” on the IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) list or “International Union for Conservation of Nature”.
Alocasia sanderiana W. Bull
- Alocasia sanderiana Hort. ex bull
- Alocasia urdanetensis Elm.
- Schizocasia sanderiana (W. Bull) Engl.
In Indonesia, this plant is usually sold in flower markets in small forms. In its natural habitat it can grow to a large height up to 2 m high. The broad leaves can reach 40 cm long and 20 cm wide. On the surface of the leaves there are silver-white veins. The cream-white flowers measure 15 cm long, with green and white spathes covering the small flowers. The female flowers are grouped at the bottom of the inflorescence, while the male flowers are at the top. The fruit is orange-red in color. Another name for Alocasia sanderiana, in the Philippines it is known as “kalis dagger” (Kalis knife / traditional Filipino knife) and “kris plant” (kris plant), while in Indonesia it is known as “keladi keris”. This plant has glossy leaves like plastic, at the edges of the leaves wavy and V-shaped.
For planting in pots, Alocasia sanderiana requires compost, a mixture of peat and clay soil with sand with the addition of crushed charcoal so that the media remains loose and root growth is not inhibited. This plant requires warm temperatures in the 18°-23°C range, moist and shady places are preferred throughout the summer, as well as an abundance of water. When the leaves fade, they need only a little water. At the time of entering the dormant period, the soil is slightly moistened from time to time.
The place needs shade and shelter from strong winds. Below 10°C, the leaves will wilt, but not die.
Propagation can be done by planting tubers, which are planted below the surface of the soil line. Do not go too deep because the tubers can rot in the soil. The soil is moistened occasionally, in a few weeks new shoots will grow from the soil surface.
Alocasia sanderiana is currently categorized as an ornamental plant because of its exotic appearance, and has been widely cultivated and maintained by ornamental plant enthusiasts as a complement to ornamental plant collections or as a yard decoration or planted in pots.