I have found a few posts on UBC regarding Alocasia Amazonica and due to the email questions I personally receive feel the facts about this plant should be posted. Added November 16, 2009: The truth about this plant is now even better known but you will need to read to the end of this thread to learn all the details. Things change as the thread moves along so follow it to the final post. Although at least one plant seller on the internet advertises "Straight from the Rainforest to Your Home" while offering Alocasia Amazonica (correctly pronounced alo-CAY-see-a for sale this plant has never existed naturally in any rain forests of the world. If you do an internet search you will find quite a few "official" sources including some university websites indicating Alocasia Amazonica was described to science by botanist AndrÃ© Michaux (1746–1802). Since the plant didn't come into existence until the 1930's that would be impossible. It is regretable that even some university researchers do not do their homework before posting dubious information. (some info in the paragraph is incorrect but is orrected later). Commonly sold, Alocasia Amazonica is likely a hybrid of Alocasia watsoniana x Alocasia sanderiana but other crosses including Alocasia watsoniana x Alocasia nobilis have produced similar results. The plant is sometimes confused with Alocasia micholitziana Sander which is a true species and is sometimes known by the common names African Mask, Green Velvet, Jewel Alocasia, Alocasia Polly, or Alocasia Alligator. Commercially it has been sold as Alocasia Frydek and as Alocasia Maxkowskii. Very likely the ""title holder" to one of the biggest horticultural myths in the world of aroids, Alocasia Amazonica is not a species, has never been described to science, does not grow naturally in any native rain forest,is not from the Amazon and the name should never be used in either the italicized form or with single quotations since it is neither a published species nor a registered cultivar. The official registrar for aroid cultivars is the International Aroid Society and none of the commonly used names for this plant have ever been registered. http://www.aroid.org/cultivars/ Many people have tried to argue the fact Alocasia Amazonica is a species but there has never been a species published to science named Alocasia Amazonica. The name is simply made-up and is now used as a common name for a hybridized plant created in the 1930's (correctly the 1950's). Aroid author and expert Julius Boos in West Palm Beach, FL was able to trace the hybrid to a nursery owner who during the 1950's owned a now defunct nursery in the Miami. The nursery was known as the "Amazon Nursery" and the grower named Alocasia Amazonica after his own business. The name has since been applied for over 70 years to this popular hybrid bred from Asian parents. There are over 100 species of Alocasia known to science and all are naturally found in the geographical region composed of Southeast Asia and neighboring island nations of the Pacific Ocean. No Alocasia species has ever been found naturally in Central or South America including the Amazon basin although species have been imported as well as set free and now thrive in the area. Hybrid plants are commonly variable and simply because the leaves are longer, shorter or wider does not mean you are growing a "different" plant. Both blades shown below were photographed on the same plant so a difference in the blade shape has to nothing to do with the name used to sell it. Aroids are naturally variable and finding leaves of different shapes, lengths, color and sizes on a single plant is very common. Aroids including pure species are variable. If you have the opinion that any plant that doesn't look exactly alike all the time or if the colorations must be the same or it indicates a new "species" you may want to consider reading this: http://www.exoticrainforest.com/Natural variation within aroid and plant species.html The underside of the hybrid is commonly burgundy but even that coloration may change as a result of the process of tissue culture. Most specimens are sterile so the plant is commonly reproduced by tissue culture in a laboratory in a test tube. The chemical process is completed when the plants are grown out in a sugar solution known as agar. Although an adult specimen may produce offsets virtually all specimens available for sale are grown from tissue cultured material. Since the hybrid was never registered the field is wide open to anyone wishing to give the plant a "new" name in an attempt to convince growers they should buy another specimen. As a result you'll find many discussions on plant forums where people wrangle over which "species" any particular specimen shape might have actually been. Despite all the wrangling they are all likely hybrids from the same parentage. Commercial growers anxious to sell even more plants often contrive "new names" including "Alocasia Alligator" and often advertise the plant as a "new species" which is simply incorrect. Regardless of any of the "new" names the plant is not a "new" species but only a hybrid. Here are three scientific data bases and you will not find Alocasia Amazonica on any. The Royal Botanic Garden Kew, London: http://www.ipni.org/index.html The Missouri Botanical Garden: http://www.tropicos.org/ World Checklist of Selected Plant Families: http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/qsearch.do Alocasia Amazonica commonly goes dormant in the winter but just because it vanishes beneath the soil does not mean it is dead. The hybrid grows best if kept in fairly bright light and does not survive long term in a dimly lit corner of a room. A specimen needs to be planted in very fast draining soil and watered regularly. Off the self potting soil can mean the "kiss of death" to a specimen since the soil needs to remain damp at all times. You'll do much better if the plant is grown in a soil that has been amended with orchid potting bard, orchid charcoal, Perlite, finely cut sphagnum moss, peat moss and compost. If you'd like to learn the scientific facts regarding Alocasia species please read A review of Alocasia (Araceae: Colocasieae) for Thailand including a novel species and new species records from South-West Thailand by aroid botanist Peter C. Boyce. http://www.aroid.org/genera/alocasia/alocthailand.pdf Again, even though the leaves below look different they were photographed on the exact same plant. The difference is known to a scientist as natural variation.