Photo by JLBG taken at Juniper Level Botanic Gdn, NC
Aspidistra elatior 'Okame'
Okame Striped Cast Iron Plant
This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.Shop Available Aspidistra
Item #: 2314
Zones: 7b to 10b
Height: 30" tall
Pot Size: 3.5" pot (24 fl. oz/0.7 L)
(syn: A. elatior 'Variegata') Aspidistra 'Okame' is one of the most asked about cast iron plants in our garden, so it's difficult to keep up with demand. The 30" tall, dark green upright leaves are highlighted with dramatic vertical white stripes...imagine spilt milk. In the Deep South, this slowly expanding clumper makes a bold evergreen accent even in dark shade. At the northern end of the range Aspidistra 'Okame' may suffer from winter burn which is easily relieved by a spring haircut. The bizarre flowers of this cast iron plant, resembling a dwarf pepperoni pizza, occur at the leaf base in very early spring.
Aspidistra are very low maintenance perennials. Each leaf can last up to 3 years, but after the second year, it will begin to show signs of aging and leaf degradation. For that reason, we recommend removing all old foliage regularly to retain the attractiveness of the clump. It's always disappointing to see large patches of cast iron plants in public spaces where it hasn't been properly maintained.
Cast iron plants grow well in both moist and dry soils as long as the drainage is good. Cast iron plants must be grown in shade, since their foliage will scorch if they are subjected to sun. In the jungles where they grow, they are often seen in very deep shade.
In containers, they make superb house plants. The common name cast iron plant speaks to their durability in less than ideal conditions.Regular moisture including increased humidity when they are grown as house plants keep them from getting stressed and becoming susceptible to spider mites.
The bold texture and upright form of cast iron plants is invaluable in the garden, since there few other plants with this form and texture. Many cast iron plants have amazing flowers, produced at the base of the foliage, often in the winter months. While these flowers are rarely noticed in the garden, they can be quite attractive in the home.
Flower Color: Spotted/Speckled
Leaf Color: Green , Variegated , White/Cream
Container Role: Thrillers
Garden Themes: Cottage Garden Plants , Living Wall , Night Gardens , White Garden
Other: Deer Resistant Plants , Drought Tolerant Plants , Dry Shade Plants , Groundcovers , Medicinal Plants , Plants from China , Rain Garden Plants , Salt Tolerant Seaside Plants , Tropical Looking Plants , Xeriscaping Plants , Colored Foliage , Patterned Foliage , House Plants