San Marcos GrowersSan Marcos Growers
New User?
Wholesale Login
Enter Password
Home Products Purchase Gardens About Us Resources Contact Us
Search Utilities
Plant Database
Search by Plant Name
Advanced Search
Search by size, origins,
color, cultural needs, etc.
Website Search
Search for any word
Site Map
Retail Locator
Plant Listings

PLANT TYPE
PLANT GEOGRAPHY
PLANT INDEX
ALL PLANT LIST
PLANT IMAGE INDEX
PLANT INTROS
SPECIALTY CROPS
NEW  2020 PLANTS

PRIME LIST
  for OCTOBER


 Weather Station

 
Products > Aspidistra elatior 'Little John'
 
Aspidistra elatior 'Little John' - Dwarf Cast Iron Plant
   

 
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Perennial
Family: Liliaceae (Lilies)
Origin: China (Asia)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Brown
Bloomtime: Spring
Height: 1 foot
Width: 2-3 feet
Exposure: Shade
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 0-10 F
Aspidistra elatior 'Little John' (Dwarf Cast Iron Plant) - Perennial with narrow 1 foot long dark green leaves that rise vertically from a slowly spreading rhizome to eventually form dense clumps. This is a much smaller version of the more common Cast Iron plant. It is similar to 'Ginga Minor' which we grew for many years but it does not have any spotting on the foliage such as that cultivar has. Cream and purple colored flowers in spring are at ground level and are pollinated by snails - while interesting they are rarely seen and not showy. As with all of the Aspidistra cultivars this plant has the ability to grow in adverse conditions, such as in dark shade areas under eaves or interior courtyards, or in filtered light. For this reason it has earned its reputation as a nearly indestructible houseplant. Although able to survive these conditions for even extended dry periods, it requires well-drained soil and looks best with regular irrigation and fertilization during spring and summer. Water occasionally to moderately and dust or hose off the leaves to keep them attractive. Hardy in outdoor conditions to short duration temperatures at least down to 15F and to 0 F with mulching. This species is native to Taiwan and islands in southern Japan where it grows as a forest understory plant. The name for the genus comes from the Greek word 'aspidion' meaning "a shield" in reference to the typical broad lanceolate leaves of the species that are shield shaped and the specific epithet means "taller". We received this plant in 2019 from John Greenlee. It likely has some cultivar name that we don't know but for now have given it the name 'Little John' to indicate its stature and to honor our source.  The information on this page is based on our research that has been conducted on this plant in our nursery library, from online sources, and from observations made of the crops growing in the nursery, plants in the nursery's garden and those in other gardens where we have observed it. We also have incorporated comments received from others and welcome getting feedback from those who may have additional information, particularly if this information includes cultural information that would aid others in growing Aspidistra elatior 'Little John'.