The Alocasia Pink Dragon (Alocasia lowii ‘Morocco’) is an attractive Alocasia variety that is distinguished by its shiny dark green leaves and light pink stems. While this aroid can flower in the spring and summer months, its blooms are relatively insignificant compared to its magnificent foliage. This Alocasia is native to Southeast Asia and Australia where it grows naturally in the tropical forest understory, but thanks to its unique appearance it has gained popularity as a houseplant too.
Like all Alocasias, the Pink Dragon is particular about its growing conditions which has earned it the reputation of being difficult to grow indoors. However, given the right conditions, this plant can actually be pretty low-maintenance. Pet owners should be aware that the Alocasia Pink Dragon is considered toxic to pets if ingested so take care with this plant around your furry friends.
|Common Name||Alocasia Pink Dragon, Alocasia Morocco|
|Botanical Name||Alocasia lowii 'Morocco'|
|Plant Type||Perennial, corm|
|Mature Size||4 ft. tall, 2-3 ft. wide|
|Soil Type||Moist but well-drained|
|Flower Color||Green, white|
|Hardiness Zones||10-12, USDA|
|Native Area||Asia, Australia|
|Toxicity||Toxic to pets|
Alocasia Pink Dragon Care
When it comes to houseplants, Alocasias are known for being a bit high-maintenance and the Alocasia Pink Dragon is no exception. This is mainly due to its affinity for high humidity and regular watering, which can be tough for many plant parents to keep up with. However, once you are familiar with the type of care that this Alocasia requires, it is relatively simple to keep up with.
Like most tropical houseplants, several hours of bright indirect light is best for the Alocasia Pink Dragon. While it can handle brief periods of direct morning sun, avoid prolonged periods of direct sunlight (particularly afternoon sunlight) as it will quickly scorch this plant’s delicate leaves. The Alocasia Pink Dragon does well under grow lights as well, which can be a good option if you don’t have enough natural light.
The Alocasia Pink Dragon should be grown in a soil mix that is rich and well-draining, yet retains some moisture. A combination of equal parts indoor potting soil, perlite, and orchid bark mix is an ideal mixture that can easily be made at home. Alternatively, look for commercial soil mixes designed for aroids.
This Alocasia should be watered once the top one to two inches of soil is dry. It appreciates consistently moist soil but is sensitive to overwatering, so be careful not to drown the plant. Always ensure that you allow the excess water to drain from the pot after each watering to prevent waterlogged soil, which can lead to root rot.
The amount an Alocasia will need to be watered will fluctuate depending on the season (more often in the summer and less often in the winter), so instead of trying to stick to a watering schedule, it’s best to test soil moisture using a moisture meter or your finger to see the plant is ready for more water.
Temperature and Humidity
Warm temperatures and high humidity are the keys to a thriving Alocasia Pink Dragon. It prefers temperatures between 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit (15 to 26 degrees Celsius) which means that average household temperatures are perfect. Providing this tropical plant with adequate humidity is often where plant parents begin to struggle. Ideally, the Alocasia Pink Dragon should be grown in 60 to 70% humidity, which is significantly higher than average household humidity levels.
Placing a small humidifier near your Alocasia is a great way to increase humidity around the plant. You can also try putting a pebble tray filled with water underneath the pot, or growing this Alocasia in a naturally humid room in the home like a bathroom or laundry room. Even grouping several houseplants together can help to increase average humidity levels in the area. Lastly, Alocasias are a great choice for indoor greenhouse cabinets since the temperature and humidity can be closely controlled and customized.
During spring and summer, the Alocasia Pink Dragon should be fed with a balanced liquid fertilizer every two weeks. Choose a fertilizer that is designed for indoor plants and make sure that you follow all label instructions. Stop fertilizing in the fall and winter when the plant goes into dormancy.
Propagating Alocasia Pink Dragon
Propagating Alocasias is not as simple as some other houseplants like pothos or philodendrons, but it can be done with some trial and error. There are two ways to propagate an Alocasia Pink Dragon: by division or by rooting corms. Both methods require a plant that is mature and well-established, so you usually need to wait a couple of years before attempting to propagate a newly acquired Alocasia Pink Dragon.
To propagate an Alocasia Pink Dragon by division, you will need a mature plant that has grown smaller plants or pups in the same pot.
- Fill a few small potting containers with a well-draining potting mix and set them aside.
- Remove the mature Alocasia from its pot by gently wiggling the pot away from the root ball. Be careful not to break any roots in the process.
- Using your hands, gently loosen the soil around the base of the plant and the Alocasia pups to expose the roots.
- Remove the pups and their root systems from the mother plant, detangling them gently to prevent as much breakage as possible.
- Pot the separated pups in the prepared potting containers, patting the soil down around the roots to hold them in place.
- Water the newly separated plants thoroughly, allowing the excess water to drain from the pot’s drainage holes.
- Place the new plants in a warm, humid location that receives bright but indirect light. Keep the soil evenly moist.
To propagate an Alocasia Pink Dragon by growing corms, follow these steps:
- Gently remove your Alocasia Pink Dragon from its pot and lay it on its side on the ground.
- Using your hands, gently loosen the soil around the plant’s root ball and dig around until you uncover small corms in the soil. Be cautious not to break any roots if possible. The corms will be firm, round, and either light green or dark brown and husky. They may or may not have their own root systems.
- Once the corms have been collected, peel off the brown husky outer layer of the corms to expose the green centers.
- Place the corms in a container with moist sphagnum moss, ensuring that the top of the corm (the pointy end) is not covered with moss. Then place the containers in a clear plastic bag and seal the top to create a greenhouse-like environment.
- Put the pots and bags in a warm location that receives bright, indirect light and open the bags once a week for 10 to 15 minutes to allow some airflow. After a few weeks you should begin seeing signs of growth, either in the roots or from the top of the corm. Keep the sphagnum moss consistently moist.
- Once the corm has sprouted and has some roots established it can be moved from the moss to a well-draining potting mix. Keep the bag covering the plant for a few weeks after moving it to the soil to prevent the new plant from going into shock, and then remove it. Keep the soil evenly moist.
Potting and Repotting Alocasia Pink Dragon
The best time to repot an Alocasia Pink Dragon is during the spring or summer when the plant is actively growing. This is because it will be able to recover more easily during its active growing period versus if it was repotted in the fall or winter months. Alocasias are sensitive and finicky plants that can suffer if they are not repotted properly, so it’s best to be cautious during the repotting process.
Choose a new potting container that is only two to three inches larger than the previous container. Moving your plant to a pot that is too large can result in accidental overwatering due to the increased amount of water held in the pot after watering. Gently remove the plant from its pot, taking care to disturb as few roots as possible, and move it to its new pot. Add fresh potting soil around the root ball and then water the plant thoroughly, allowing excess water to drain from the drainage holes before returning it to its original location.
Common Pests and Plant Diseases
Like all houseplants, Alocasia Pink Dragon is vulnerable to infestations from common pests like fungus gnats, mealybugs, and scale. However, Alocasias in general are particularly attractive to spider mites. So much so that it’s a good idea to take preventative measures to prevent spider mites from taking over your plant.
First, try not to let your plant dry out too much, which makes it more attractive to these annoying mites. Second, apply an insecticide (like neem oil) to the leaves of your plant once or twice a month to deter pests and prevent potential infestations.
The Alocasia Pink Dragon is also prone to root rot if it is overwatered or not given proper drainage. Watch out for signs of root rot such as mushy roots or stems, yellow leaves, or drooping and wilted leaves.
Common Problems With Alocasia Pink Dragon
Alocasias are notorious for being finicky houseplants, so it’s not uncommon to experience a few problems when growing them indoors, especially as you’re learning how to best care for them. Here are a few common problems to watch out for along with their most likely causes.
Yellow leaves on an Alocasia Pink Dragon are an indication that something is wrong in the plant’s growing environment. Usually, underwatering, a lack of humidity, or a lack of light are to blame, but leaves can turn yellow due to overwatering too. The only way to know what’s causing the yellow leaves is to examine your plant’s growing environment closely and try switching things up to see what helps.
Brown leaves are almost always a result of too much sunlight (leaf burn) or a lack of humidity which causes the leaves to dry up. Ensure that your plant does not receive any direct sunlight, and keep it away from drafty air vents which can dry out the air too much around the plant.
Is the Alocasia Pink Dragon rare?
The Alocasia Pink Dragon is less common than popular Alocasia varieties like the Alocasia polly, however, it is becoming more widely available as demand increases and growers become more aware of this unique plant.
Are the Alocasia Pink Dragon and Alocasia Morocco the same plant?
Alocasia Pink Dragon and Alocasia Morocco are two names for the same plant, botanically known as Alocasia lowii ‘Morocco’.
Why is my Alocasia Pink Dragon losing all of its leaves?
It’s common for Alocasias to go dormant in the fall and winter months, losing all of their leaves in the process. If your plant is shedding leaves in the fall, don’t panic—they will grow back in the spring during the plant’s next growing season. Simply cut back on watering and wait patiently for new growth to appear once the warm weather and longer days return.
American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. “Alocasia.” Aspca.org. N.p., n.d. Web.