Italian Cuckoo-Pint, Italian Lords And Ladies
Arum italicum is a Mediterranean native that has naturalized in various other locations around the globe. This plant looks very similar to A. maculatum and it is capable of hybridising with it, but it has delicate pale veins on its arrow-shaped leaves. It produces pale green to white upright spathes which develop into bright red berries. The "wild" form has modest markings but cultivars with more pronounced veins have been developed for ornamental gardens. These can be particularly striking, with bright white venation.
Berries can be stripped in Autumn once they have fully ripened and seeds removed with care.
Propagate by dividing tubers after flowering when they have become dormant in the Autumn. Tubers can be as deep as 400 mm below the surface and should be handled with care, this is a poisonous plant.
Seeds should be sown as soon as they have ripened in the Autumn. The fleshy part of the berry should be removed and the seed sown at a depth twice its size. Self seeding may become a problem.
Partial Sun, Full Shade
Chalk, Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil PH preference
Neutral, Acid, Alkaline
Suits informal cottage gardens in flower borders/beds or under large shrubs/trees. It is occasionally used for flower arranging.
No real pests or diseases to speak of.