2018 Festival July 27-29th in Stuart Park

Lake Placid, and surrounding Highlands County is blessed with natural beauty, rich soil and energetic and creatively talented people. We expanded our popular Caladium Festival to include other interesting and significant
aspects of our economy, heritage and culture. Please make plans to join us!



    Our Annual Caladium Festival Features:



Car Show Application

Business Decorating Contest

• Dr. Tom McDonald 5K Race
• Floral Arrangement Competition
• Art & Craft booths, Food & Entertainment

Area's Growing Grape Industry Wine Display

• Florida Friendly Landscape & Ornamental Plants
• Caladium Festival Art Competition

Caladium Field Bus Tours

  & Much More!


The caladium is the crown jewel of the  jack-in-the pulpit family (Araceae). With all of its colors and leaf shapes, it is the bird of paradise in the drab crow family of arums.  Dr. Henry Nehrling is well known for his early hybridizing work in Gotha and Naples, Florida in the early 1900's.

In South Florida, caladium cultivars can provide color and brighten dark, shady corners for 9 months or maybe longer. As one goes north, they tend to have a dormant period with cooler weather and less moisture.

The variations of color are shown in this video-the pictures virtually jump in your face! You will see how caladium foliage can challenge the brightest blooms. Highlights of our tour at the 2013 Lake Placid (The Caladium Capital of the World) Caladium  Festival are presented. To see 1500 acres of glowing caladium foliage ranks up there with seeing the flowering tulip fields in Holland (almost!).

The plants live 3 years or more if given sufficient organic matter, fertilizer, water and warm temperatures. There are no significant caladium pests in the landscape, not even the Sri Lanka weevil chews on them!

This video produced by 2 Collier County Master Gardeners.

To learn more, go this link to read the document by UF/IFAS caladium developer, Dr. Zhanao Deng.


Congratulations to Nissa Budhraj!  Nissa is a 5th grade student at Lakeview Christian School.  Her artwork was awarded first place in the kid's art contest sponsored by Wauchula State Bank.  She receives a check for $50 and her artwork will be displayed in the Lake Placid Wauchula State Bank branch for a year. 


Caladium History
Caladiums were first grown in the Lake Placid area in the early 1940's. The industry began to expand in the 1950's and today consists of over 1200 acres. This acreage is owned and managed by 14 families, some of which have been producing caladiums for over 40 years. Several of the families have the third generation in the business. Caladiums are increasingly popular as landscape plants as their use is becoming more widely known. Much of the popularity is due to the bright color of the leaves, the versatility of the plant, and its simple growing requirements. They are a shade loving plant from the rain forests of the Amazon basin. The plant has no pests and does not require any insecticide treatment or fertilization. The leaves are its feature and they are odor free. Potted plants as well as cut leaves make beautiful arrangements and are long lasting with proper care.

The caladiums are grown in large fields which have been compared to the tulip fields in Holland for their beauty during the summer months.  Many visitors have stated that the drive by the fields is worth the trip to Lake Placid. The patchwork of color of over 40 varieties of red, white, and pink, and all combinations of the colors is truly a handiwork of art.

To read more information from Dr. Deng, click on the titles listed here:  Caladium in Florida   Garden White   Tapestry   Cherry Tart   Royal Flush   Summer Pink

Learn how the Caladium Festival began....

Lake Placid is located in south central Florida. 27 pristine freshwater lakes provide a popular destination for fishing, boating, swimming & water sports. Visitors to our community enjoy our friendly small town atmosphere and are warmly welcomed at all our local businesses. Lake Placid has dozens of antique & gift stores, quality restaurants and accommodations. Lake Placid is home to many award winning murals, gracing buildings in our area. Our Mural Society has also commissioned many whimsical trash containers, and a Birds Around Town program. Set aside time during your trip to take the walking tour of this unique feature of our community.

Hobbyist pilot captures colorful Caladiums in Lake Placid area.
Click here to read the article


Vintage and special cars, trucks, motorcycles and antique tractors will be on display!


©Copyright 2019 All Rights Reserved  Greater Lake Placid Chamber of Commerce 
18 North Oak Avenue  
•  Lake Placid, Florida 33852 •  (863) 465-4331

A special thanks to Victor & Jan Larson for taking many of the wonderful photos on this web site