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Dragon Scale Alocasia Care [Growing & Guiding A “Jewel Aroid”]

Dragon Scale Alocasia or Dragon Scale Plant have tough-textured leaves resembling mythical dragon scales but are fragile against wavering upkeeps.

Generally, Dragon Scale Alocasia requires 60-80% humidity with a porous potting mix and biweekly watering. Offer 60-85°F surrounding temperatures, 6 hours of indirect sunlight, fertilizer use every 6 weeks, repotting every 2-4 years, and pruning every 2 years.

Consider reading this article to add and care for this exotic plant to your mini indoor garden.

Overview of Dragon Scale Alocasia

Dragon Scale Alocasia is a tropical evergreen perennial cultivar belonging to the Araceae family and is considered “Jewel Alocasia” because of its rarity.

Additionally, the plant leaves boast silvery matte colors, deeply veined textures, and shapes resembling dragon scales; hence its name.

In fact, due to these hallmark leaves, Dragon Scale Alocasia spots similarities to many Alocasia species, often confusing the growers.

Dragon Scale Alocasia is a cultivar of Alocasia baginda, vegetatively cultivated by horticulturists. Hence, the plant doesn’t stay true to its seeds! 

But the following features make Dragon Scale Plant unique among its kind!

Scientific Name Alocasia baginda
Common NameAlocasia 'Dragon Scale'

Dragon Scale Alocasia

Jewel Alocasia
USDA Zones 9-11
Growth Rate Slow to Moderate (Seasonal)
Growth Size Height: 3-6 feet

Spread: 2 feet
Leaves Shape: Arrowhead-shaped with pointed tips and deeply incised base

Color: Mottled silvery green

Texture: Tough, pliable & leathery
Flower Inflorescence: Lime-Yellow Spathe & Creamy-White Spadix

Blooming: Late Winter to Early Summer
Native HabitatWet Tropical Forests of South-East Asia (Borneo & Indonesia)
Toxicity Toxic for Humans & Pets
Grown ForTextured Leaves

Dragon Scale Alocasia Care

Dragon Scale Alocasia is a mid-maintenance tropical epiphyte to semi-epiphyte. But it also grows well as a terrestrial plant.

In its native habitat, the plant grows in calcium-rich soil, with warm and sultry environments supporting its growth.

Hence, you must mimic the growth conditions of the tropical environment to care for the plant indoors.

Let’s look at the utmost care requirements for this demanding Alocasia variety.

Summary of caring for dragon scale alocaisa
Summary of quick care hacks for caring Dragon Scale Alocasia.

1. Light & Temperature

Dragon Scale Alocasia requires six hours of bright indirect light for its proper growth.

Besides, the ideal temperature for this plant is around 60-85°F during spring, summer, and fall.

However, a temperature of around 55°F-60°F (above 50°F) is necessary to keep the plant in form throughout winter.

The plant can suffer from leaf curling, yellowing, and browning without adequate temperature and light.

So, investing in heat lamps and frost blankets to cope with low temperatures during winter can help the plant bounce back from low light and temperature issues.

You can also keep the plant near a dappled east-facing window or 3-5 feet from an open south-facing window.

However, keep the plant away from drafty north-facing windows or cooling vents in winter to prevent temperature drops. 

2. Watering & Humidity

Dragon Scale Alocasia requires around 60-80% of humidity. However, you can also grow them in low humidity by balancing the plant’s watering needs.

So, Dragon Scale Alocasia needs biweekly watering in spring, summer, and fall. But, in winter, you must water it weekly as the plant enters dormancy.

The symptoms of underwatering and low humidity are grey leaves with stunted growth.

Meanwhile, the overwatering and high humidity signs include yellow leaves, wilting, brown patches, and decaying stems.

Hence, it’s crucial to observe the topmost 1-2 inches of the potting soil to check if it’s dry before watering them in winter.

You can also take the help of self-watering pots or employ the approach of bottom watering.

Similarly, you can use humidity trays or humidifiers or group the plants together to manage surrounding moisture for the plant.

3. Fertilization & Soil

Dragon Scale Alocasia requires well-aerated organic soil (pH: 5.7-7) fortified with a balanced liquid fertilizer every 6 weeks in spring and summer.

Feeding the plant in fall and winter can lead to the browning of leaf tips and margins (fertilizer burns).

Heavy and unfertilized soil can also cause their leaves to discolor and lose vigor due to overwatering and lack of nutrients.

However, you can blend one-third of each peat moss, organic perlite, and orchid bark to prepare the soil and encourage the soil porosity.

Overfertilization can also cause the soil to accumulate more mineral salts and burn the roots.

But you can wash the potting soil monthly using distilled water to flush out the salts or change the soil completely if the symptoms remain.

To boost drainage, unclog the pot’s drainage holes weekly or lay down a layer of pebbles at the base during repotting or transplants. 

4. Repotting Care

Dragon Scale Alocasia requires repotting every 2-4 years when it becomes rootbound or when its roots stuff on the topsoil.

Additionally, the best season to repot them is mid-spring to early summer in a 1-2 inches bigger terracotta pot.
dragon scale alocasia in the pot
Dragon Scale Alocasia exposed in sunlight

If you forgo repotting, the plant may experience stunted growth, and the potting mix also dries out quickly due to too many roots.

Repotting Alocasia Dragon Scale

To repot Dragon Scale Plant, follow these easy steps.

  • Water the plant 1-2 days before repotting to loosen up the potting mix.
  • Remove the soil from the pot, tilt the pot upside down or to the sides, and tug the plant along with its root ball out of the planter.
  • Untangle the root ball and cut down brown, injured, or mushy roots using sterilized pruners and keep the healthy roots intact.
  • Prepare a new planter and fill it one-third with fresh potting mix.
  • Keep the plant in the center of the pot and add soil from the sides to fill the pot up to an inch below the brim. 
  • After repotting, give plenty of water and sunlight for regrowth.

5. Occasional Pruning

You can prune the Dragon Scale Alocasia occasionally to restore its aesthetic looks.

Their thick and juicy stems provide some sort of protection from the attacks of pests like spider mites, aphids, and scales.

The yellow leaves in Alocasia may indicate a fungal infection in your plant.

Pruning Alocasia primarily aims to remove dead leaves and stop disease spread. The best season to prune them is in spring and summer.

Further, a dark brown, black, or yellow halo around the spots can be caused by the Xanthomonas bacteria.

You can grab sterilized scissors and trim the yellow leaves along their margins or tip properly, removing brown and decayed leaves.

If you find the stem infected, it is recommended to remove it as it will trigger the infection further.

You can use Q-tips and dilute isopropyl alcohol to eradicate the pests manually.

The neem oil and warm insecticidal soap can help deal with the infestation.

Alocasia Dragon Scale [Growth Rate & Flowering]

Dragon Scale Alocasia belongs to the Araceae family, with thick ribbed leaves and stems.

Additionally, the leaves are emerald green with broad, oval-shaped elongated tips with dark and deep green veins.

However, the veins on the underside of the leaves are a pale green or creamy.

The whitish-creamy or lime-green inflorescence is known as spathe and spadix, which blooms anywhere in spring or summer.

The Dragon Scale Alocasia doesn’t provide any fragrance. Because its foliage has no perfume, and the flower doesn’t depend on pollination.

The plant matures after 7 years and grows in rows roughly 3-6 feet tall in its tropical habitat. It grows about 3 feet tall and 2 feet wide indoors.

They tend to grow most noticeably in the spring and summer. While we hardly see their growth in the winter season as they enter dormancy.

Alocasia Dragon Scale: Toxic or Not?

Dragon Scale Alocasia is one of the poisonous aroids and is toxic to your cats, dogs, and children.

According to ASPCA, Dragon Scale Alocasia is toxic due to insoluble calcium oxalate crystals.

Even a small nibble of the plant parts by your pets or children can lead to symptoms like drooling, vomiting, skin rashes, difficulties in breathing and swallowing, and oral irritation.

If you observe these symptoms in your pet or children, contact the hotlines to register an emergency.

Alocasia Dragon Scale [Propagation Methods]

The variety of plants belonging to the Alocasia family is propagated by division or corms (bulbs) propagation.

1. Offset Division

Offset division is the process of propagating plants using their healthy offshoots or plantlets.

They are usually smaller than the mother plant and grow around it, bearing a small leaf atop.

  • Identify healthy offsets and water the mother plant 1-2 days before repotting.
  • Take new 6-inch wide and deep terracotta pots, place a layer of pebbles at the base, and fill it with potting soil.
  • Remove the mother plant from the old pot, and untangle its roots.
  • Use a sterilized knife to cut vertically between the offshoots and the mother plant to separate them.
  • Place the cuttings in the fluffy mix and cover the cuttings with a zip-lock bag to secure warmth and humidity. 
  • Observe the baby transplants in the first 8 weeks and remove the plastic when they show new leaves.
  • The products of offset propagation will grow much healthier.

2. Corms or Bulbs Divison

Alocasia develops corms or bulbs below the soil around the root ball.

You will find them easily while repotting the mature mother plant.

  • Once the roots are out of the plant, shake it properly and separate the corms from the root ball.
  • After, peel the outer layer of the corm or plant them likewise if the peel is tough to remove.
  • Plant them directly in a new pot with fresh soil or a bottle cap with water for rooting and later transplant them into the soil.
  • Cover with plastic wrap to secure humidity and moisture.
  • After 1-2 weeks, the corms will develop new roots and new shoots at the top.

Dragon Scale Alocasia for Sale

Rare and one-of-a-kind, Dragon Scale Alocasia is strictly restricted to the following online stores.

Places to Buy Shipping Time
My Home Nature Within 2-4 days after placing an order
Happy Forest Store Within 9-11 days after placing an order
Carousell Within 7-15 days after placing an order

Alocasia Dragon Scale Vs. Silver Dragon

The Dragon Scale and Silver Dragon Alocasias are hard to differentiate.

They have similar appearance, growth habits, and leaf structure (shape, texture, and size).

However, upon closer inspection, the leaves and veins of the Dragon Scale are green, while the leaves and veins of the Silver Dragon are silvery grey.

If you are curious about the Silver Dragon Alocasia, watch the video below.

From Editorial Team


While it requires low maintenance, be wary of Dragon Scale Alocasia’s problems, as hurting the plant would cost you a rare pick.

To have the plant happily thriving, maintain tropical conditions at all times.

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