How to Grow Arisaema Plants in your Garden

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Dragonroot, Jack in the Pulprit, and Indian Turnip

The common names for the Hardy perennial Arisaema include Dragonroot, Indian turnip and Jack in the pulpit.

Dragonroot is a woodland plant that typically flowers in the early Summer.

Arisaema sikkoianum
Arisaema sikkoianum variegatum by SuperFantastic.

Description of Arisaema

Arisaema are medium sized plants that range between 30 and 90 cm in size. They are a woodland plant that are often grown in gardens due to them being a curious looking plant.

Arisaema have hooded green or cream flowers that have dark stripes. The flowers stand erect and are tubular in nature.

Jack in the Pulprit
Jack in the Pulprit by Dave Bonta.

Quick Arisaema Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Jack in the Pulprit, Gaudy Jack, Indian Turnip, Dragonroot, Whipcord Cobra Lily, Chinese Cobra Lily, Green Dragon
Family: Araceae (Arum).
Life Cycle: Hardy Perennial, Hardy Bulb
Height: 12 to 40 inches ( 30 to 100cm)
Native: Africa, Asia, North America

Growing Region: Zones 3 to 9 (Species dependent)
Flowers: Early Summer
Flower Details: Hooded, tubular, Striped, Green, Cream, purple

Sow Outdoors: Cover seeds, Late Summer/Early Autumn. Spacing 10 inches (20 cm)
Sow Indoors: Easier to start outdoors or from bulbs. Sow anytime but first put seeds in a plastic bag with moist soil then refrigerate for five or six weeks. Germination time: one to six months. Temperature 55 to 65°F ( 13 to 18°C), weeks before expected last frost. Transplant outdoors in spring or autumn.

Requires: Partial shade, moist soils, Humus rich soil, pH 7, Apply compost mulch in autumn Regular watering from spring to autumn, use slug pellets. Propagate by division in spring or autumn.

How to Grow Arisaema

If you intend to sow Arisaema seeds outdoors, they should be sowed on the surface and lightly covered with soil in the early autumn.

It is quite difficult to germinate Arisaema seedlings indoor. If you intend to do so, then you should first stratify the seeds by placing them in a moistened growth medium within a plastic bag; the bag should then be kept at four degrees celsius by placing in a fridge; for a period of six weeks.

Following this period, the seeds should be sown into pots (lightly covered with soil) and germinated at a temperature of 13 to 15 degrees. The germination process will typically take between one and six months.

Following germination the seedlings should be transplanted in either the spring or autumn into a partly shaded section of the garden, at a spacing of between 20 to 25 cm, and in moist, humus rich soil. The Ideal pH should be around 7.

Caring for Dragonroot and other Arisaema

It is pretty easy to look after Arisaema, they require moist conditions from spring until the middle of Autumn. At other times they can be left in dry conditions.

Ideally they should be composted in the Autumn. It may also be necessary to apply slug pellets to the area containing Arisaema liberally.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on Arisaema. You may also enjoy the following Gardener's HQ growing guides: How to grow Arum Lily and Dracunculus plants.