Very special because of the mimicry it shows on its foliage, Caladium steudnerifolium Engl. is a geophyte, (a perennial plant, which in spring propagates from an underground organ such as a bulb, tuber, corm or rhizome). It is a small understorey herb (30–50 cm height) with 1–4 erect, peltate and plain (Fig. 1a) or,frequently, variegated leaves, and a subglobose, subterranean tuber.
Petioles are terete, weakly glossy to semiglossy ,moderately firm to spongy, dark green to medium yellow-green, tinged heavily purple in lower half tothroughout much its length, short pale-lineate, some-times spotted whitish, sometimes tinged purple, with dark purple stripe most of the length of petiole. Leaf blades are peltate, thinly coriaceous, dark green and matte to matte-subvelvety above, glaucous below, plain or mottled with whitish maculations midway to margin along full length of blade.
Plants with plain leaves and those with variegated leaves usually occur in the same population. The variegation is caused by irregularly shaped patches of cells without chlorophyll occurring in some distance to the midrib.
Since the species is named after the genus SteudneraK. Koch and not Steudneria, the proper spelling isC. steudnerifolium.
The genus name Caladium comes from from Malay kěladi, an aroid plant.
Name: Caladium steudnerifolium Engl.
Form: Tuber geophyte
Native Range: Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia
Habitat: at 40–1662 m(mostly 200–1000 m) in Tropical wet forest, Tropical wet forest transition zone to Pluvial forest, Premontane wet forest, and Premontane rain forest life zones.
Height: 30-50 cm
Spread: 30-50 cm
Sun: Part shade
Tolerate: Semi Shade
Taxon identifiers: Global Biodiversity Information Facility ID : 2868394
Synonyms: no synonyms recorded