Calla lilies, botanically known as Zantedeschia, are not true lilies but they bring a unique sophistication to any garden or home with their distinctive trumpet-shaped blooms.

These striking plants, native to South Africa, are famous for their range of tropical colors and their lush leaves often speckled with white or silver.

Despite their exotic appeal, they are surprisingly easy to grow and maintain.

With the right planting location, soil, light, and care, you can enjoy the beauty of these flowers throughout their blooming season.

So, whether you’re planning on growing them in your yard or as houseplants, here are some valuable insights to help you nurture them successfully.

Annual Vegetative Calendar for Calla Lily

Calla Lilies, with their elegant trumpet-shaped blooms and sleek foliage, are a sophisticated addition to any garden or home. To ensure these beauties thrive, let’s delve into an annual vegetative calendar tailored specifically for Calla Lily care.

Spring

MonthTasksDescription
MarchPlantingStart planting Calla Lily rhizomes in well-draining soil with plenty of sunlight.
WateringBegin watering sparingly, increasing as the new shoots appear.
AprilFertilizationApply a balanced, slow-release fertilizer as growth becomes more vigorous.
Pest ControlMonitor for and address any signs of pests or diseases early on.
MaySupportProvide support stakes for taller varieties to keep them upright.

Summer

MonthTasksDescription
JuneMulchingApply a layer of mulch to retain moisture in the soil and keep roots cool.
JulyRegular CareContinue regular watering and fertilization to support blooming. Deadhead spent flowers to encourage more blooms.
AugustMonitoringKeep an eye on water needs during hot spells, ensuring Calla Lilies are not over-watered.

Fall

MonthTasksDescription
SeptemberReduce WateringGradually reduce watering as the plant begins to enter dormancy.
OctoberRhizome CareIn colder zones, dig up rhizomes to store over winter. Clean and dry them before storing in a cool, dry place.
NovemberStorage CheckCheck stored rhizomes monthly for rot or desiccation, removing any that are compromised.

Winter

MonthTasksDescription
DecemberRest PeriodKeep rhizomes in a cool, dry place throughout the winter months.
JanuaryPlanningStart planning for the next growing season. Consider new planting locations or varieties.
FebruaryPre-Spring PrepBegin to prepare for spring planting. Order new rhizomes if needed and check on the stored ones.

Caring for Calla Lilies involves a cycle of planting, active growth care, and dormancy management. By following this vegetative calendar, you can ensure your Calla Lilies not only survive but thrive, bringing elegance and beauty to your garden or home each year.

Adjust care routines as needed based on your local climate conditions and the specific needs of your plants.

How to Grow Calla Lily Plants

  • Planting Time: Calla lilies are generally planted in the springtime. This planting period gives them enough time to grow moderately fast and produce their beautiful flowers by early-to-mid-summer, continuing to bloom until early fall.
  • Planting Method: These plants grow from rhizomes. Rhizomes are the underground parts of the plant that resemble bulbs. It’s best to plant them in loose, well-drained soil.
  • Sunlight Needs: Calla lilies love sunlight. They prefer to be located in full sun or partial shade in warmer climates. Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight, however, can be harmful, especially when they’re kept indoors.
  • Water Requirements: Watering your Calla lilies is simple. Just ensure you water them when half of the soil volume is dry. Water until the liquid flows through the drainage hole at the bottom of the pot and discard any accumulated water.
  • Fertilizer: Feed your calla lilies regularly for best results. Remember, the exact frequency and type of fertilizer can vary based on your specific growing conditions.

Where to Grow Calla Lily

  • Outdoor Planting: Calla lilies can be planted in beds and borders for a lovely display in your yard. They are considered tender perennials, flourishing in warmer climates and USDA zones 8 to 10. However, in cooler climates, they can be grown as annuals for a stunning late-season display.
  • Indoor Planting: Calla lilies make stunning houseplants, especially when grown in containers. They can be grown near sunny windows where they receive plenty of indirect sunlight. They also thrive under grow lights if natural light is insufficient.
  • Potted Planting: You can grow calla lilies in containers too. Choose a deep container that’s about 12 inches in diameter. This method offers flexibility as you can place the pots outdoors during warmer months and bring them indoors during harsh winters.
  • Geographical Considerations: Originally from South Africa, Calla lilies are adaptable and can be grown in various regions. However, they can sometimes be invasive, specifically in regions like Australia and California. Be aware of this potential when planting in these areas.

Bear in mind that Calla lilies, while incredibly beautiful, are toxic to humans and pets. All parts of the plant contain toxins.

So, while they make a lovely addition to your home or garden, be cautious if you have young children or pets that may be tempted to nibble on the plants.

How to Plant Calla Lily Plants

Calla Lily, known botanically as Zantedeschia, is a beautiful, exotic flower that is cherished by many garden enthusiasts.

Here are some steps to get your Calla Lily plant up and running:

  • Planting Season: The ideal time to plant calla lilies is in the spring. The blooms often start appearing by early-to-mid summer, continuing until the early fall.
  • Planting Location: Calla lilies flourish in various environments and can be planted in beds, borders, and containers. They are also suited to become elegant houseplants.
  • Soil Preparation: Calla lilies prefer loose, well-drained soil.
  • Sunlight Exposure: These plants like to be located in full sun or partial shade, particularly in warmer climates. Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight could damage the plant, causing the leaves to burn.

How to Care for Calla Lily

Taking care of your Calla Lily plant doesn’t require too much work.

With the proper knowledge and techniques, your Calla Lily plant can flourish and showcase its exquisite beauty. Here’s how to do it:

  • Light Requirements: Calla Lily prefers bright, indirect light. Try to ensure that your plant gets at least 6 hours a day of indirect bright sunlight.
  • Watering: The Calla Lily plant appreciates moist soil. Water your Calla Lily plant when 50% of the soil volume is dry. Keep the soil moist but avoid it becoming too wet or soggy.
  • Humidity: Calla Lilies thrive in humid conditions. You can increase humidity by placing a humidifier nearby, grouping it with other plants, or using a pebble tray.
  • Temperature: The ideal temperature for a Calla Lily plant is between 60-80°F.
  • Feeding: Calla Lilies benefit from regular feeding.
  • Growth Cycle: Calla Lilies bloom from early to late summer on sturdy upright stems, and their beautiful foliage adds to their ornamental value. The leaves are wide and bright green, often speckled with white or silver.
  • Safety: A critical point to note is that Calla Lilies are toxic to humans and pets. All parts of the plant are poisonous, so they should be handled with care and kept out of reach from children and animals.

Remember that every plant has its own personality, and your Calla Lily may have specific needs depending on its environment and condition.

Pay close attention to its health and well-being, and adjust your care routine accordingly.

With proper care and attention, your Calla Lily will reward you with stunning, long-lasting blooms and a vibrant presence in your garden or home.

How to Prune Calla Lily Plants

Pruning Calla Lily plants isn’t a complicated task but it does require some patience and care.

  • Know the right time: The best time to prune Calla Lily is at the end of their growing season. This is usually in the late fall or early winter after the plant has stopped flowering.
  • Identify the foliage to prune: You’ll want to focus on the yellow or brown leaves that appear wilted. These are the leaves that are dying off and should be pruned.
  • Use the right tools: Make sure to use sharp, clean shears or scissors to avoid damaging the plant or spreading disease.
  • Prune carefully: Cut the dying foliage at the base of the stem, as close to the soil as possible.
  • Clean up: Collect the cut leaves and dispose of them properly to prevent any possible spread of disease.

How to Propagate Calla Lily

Propagating Calla Lily is a great way to multiply these beautiful flowers in your garden. Here are some steps to guide you through this process.

  • Choose the right time: The best time to propagate Calla Lily is during their dormant season, typically in the fall.
  • Preparation: Before you start, make sure you have a pot with well-draining soil and a healthy Calla Lily plant.
  • Identify the rhizomes: These are the thick, tuberous roots that grow underneath the soil. You’ll want to gently dig up the plant and locate these.
  • Cut the rhizomes: Using a sharp knife, divide the rhizomes into pieces, ensuring each piece has at least one ‘eye’ or growth point.
  • Planting: Plant the divided rhizomes into the prepared pot, ensuring the ‘eyes’ are facing upwards.
  • Care: Water the newly planted rhizomes moderately and keep them in a place where they will receive plenty of indirect sunlight.

Pests and Diseases

While Calla Lily plants are quite hardy, they can still fall prey to various pests and diseases.

  • Pests: Some common pests that attack Calla Lily include aphids, spider mites, and thrips. If you notice small, discolored spots on your plants or see small bugs crawling around, you may have a pest problem.
  • Diseases: Calla Lily are susceptible to various diseases, including bacterial soft rot, root rot, and various fungal infections. Symptoms include wilting, yellowing leaves, and a foul smell.
  • Management: Regular inspections and early intervention can help manage these issues. For pests, you may use insecticidal soap or introduce beneficial insects like ladybugs. For diseases, removing the infected parts of the plant and improving drainage and air circulation can help.

The steps outlined in these guidelines will help you to maintain a healthy, vibrant Calla Lily plant.

Whether you’re pruning, propagating, or managing pests and diseases, remember to be patient and consistent. These plants are worth the effort!

Advice On Buying Calla Lily Plants

Purchasing Calla Lily plants isn’t as complex as rocket science, but there are a few things to keep in mind. Trust me, you’ll thank yourself later!

  • Understanding the Environment: Calla Lilies thrive in full sun and require at least six hours a day to produce good blooms. They also love moist soil conditions, so ensure you have an environment that supports their growth.
  • Choosing Healthy Bulbs: Healthy bulbs are the lifeline of any Calla Lily plant. Select bulbs that are firm, not soft or mushy. Remember, larger bulbs will produce more flowers.
  • Inspecting for Pests and Diseases: Nobody likes a sickly plant. So, it’s important to inspect the bulb and plant for signs of pests and diseases before purchase. If you see anything suspicious, steer clear.
  • Knowing the Varieties: There are several types of Calla Lilies, including Zantedeschia aethiopica (commonly known as Arum Lilies) and Zantedeschia hybrids. Each has its own set of care instructions and requirements.

Where to Buy Calla Lily Plants Online

E-commerce has made buying plants online a breeze, including Calla Lilies.

You can get these enchanting blooms without stepping a foot outside your home! There are several online platforms where you can find a diverse range of Calla Lilies, and here are a few.

  • Spring Hill Nurseries: A place known for quality bulbs, plants, and trees, offering a customer-friendly return policy too.
  • Easy To Grow Bulbs: If you’re after Calla Lily bulbs, this is a wonderful place to start. They even have a Calla Lily with a cheeky name, the ‘Pillow Talk’.
  • Eden Brothers: They offer about 13 varieties of Calla Lily bulbs, easy to grow, and provide a plethora of aesthetic uses.
  • Nurserylive: A good place to find Calla Lily flower bulbs, sometimes even at a discounted price.
  • Garden Express: Another great online nursery offering Calla Lilies and Arum-lilys (Zantedeschia).

Calla Lily Varieties to Grow

Variety is the spice of life, and when it comes to Calla Lilies, you have an array of options.

Each variant of Calla Lily carries a unique charm and quality.

  • Bicolor Calla Lilies: Known for their stunning colors, these are quite popular. They have pink rims that taper to soft yellow throats. They’re a medium-large plant with strong stems.
  • Arum Lilies (Zantedeschia aethiopica): They’re one of the common types. However, they do not like shade or wet areas.
  • Hybrid Varieties: These are similar to Zantedeschia aethiopica, but they’re usually smaller and multiply less readily.
  • Zantedeschia Pillow Talk: This variant leans towards warmer tones and makes a stunning addition to any garden.
  • Delicate White Calla Lilies: Known for their purity and innocence, these are often given as a sign of appreciation.

Remember, regardless of the variety you choose, ensuring a healthy bulb and the right growing environment will help your Calla Lily plant to thrive.

It’s not about the destination, but the journey, even in gardening.

So, enjoy every moment of nurturing your Calla Lily plant.

FAQs

What type of soil is best for Calla Lily?

Calla Lilies prefer well-draining soil that is rich in organic matter. They grow best in soil that is moist but not waterlogged. The soil should be loose and well-aerated to allow for proper root growth. You can use a good quality potting mix or create your own by mixing equal parts of peat moss, perlite, and vermiculite. Adding compost or aged manure to the soil can also help improve its fertility and texture.

How often should I water my Calla Lily?

Calla Lilies require regular watering, especially during the growing season. Water the plants deeply, allowing the soil to dry out slightly between waterings. Aim to keep the soil consistently moist, but not overly saturated. Overwatering can lead to root rot and other issues. During the dormant period, which occurs after flowering has ceased, you should refrain from watering as much to allow the plant to die back.

Can Calla Lily be grown indoors?

Yes, Calla Lilies can be grown indoors as long as they receive adequate sunlight and proper care. Place the plant in a location that receives bright, indirect sunlight or direct sunlight for a few hours each day. Water the plant sparingly, allowing the soil to dry out between waterings. Fertilize the plant once a month during the growing season with a balanced fertilizer. Repot the plant every two years to ensure proper growth and development.

When should I plant Calla Lily?

Calla Lilies are typically planted in the spring. They grow moderately fast, often producing flowers by early-to-mid-summer and blooming throughout the season until early fall. Plant the rhizomes in well-draining soil that is rich in organic matter. Water sparingly at first, and then increase watering once the plants have a few leaves. Calla Lilies prefer to be located in full sun or partial shade in warmer climates.

Do Calla Lilies require fertilization?

Calla Lilies have low nutrient requirements, but they can benefit from occasional fertilization during the growing season. Use a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer specifically formulated for Calla Lilies or other flowering plants. Follow the instructions on the fertilizer packaging for the appropriate dosage and frequency. It is important not to over-fertilize, as this can lead to excessive growth and damage to the plant. Fertilize sparingly, typically once every 2-4 weeks during the active growing season, and reduce or stop fertilization during the dormant period.

How do I plant Calla Lily?

Start by preparing the soil by loosening it and removing any weeds or debris. Plant the rhizomes 2-3 inches deep and 12-18 inches apart, depending on the variety. Cover the rhizomes with soil and water thoroughly after planting to settle the soil and provide moisture to the roots. Mulching around the base of the plants with a layer of organic mulch, such as straw or wood chips, can help conserve moisture and suppress weed growth.

How much sunlight does Calla Lily need?

Calla Lilies require full sun to partial shade. They should be planted in a location that receives at least 4-6 hours of direct sunlight per day. Adequate sunlight is essential for the plant’s growth, flower production, and overall health. If your garden doesn’t receive enough sunlight, you can consider growing Calla Lilies in containers and placing them in a sunny spot or using artificial grow lights to supplement the light.

Are there different varieties of Calla Lily?

Yes, there are numerous varieties of Calla Lilies available, each with its own unique characteristics, flower shapes, colors, and bloom times. Some popular Calla Lily varieties include the classic white, pink, yellow, and red. Each variety has its own unique growing requirements and flower forms. Choose a variety that suits your preferences and growing conditions.

Are there any pests or diseases that affect Calla Lily?

Calla Lilies are generally pest and disease-free, but they can be affected by common issues such as spider mites, aphids, and fungal diseases. Regularly inspect the plants for any signs of infestation, such as webbing or distorted growth, and take appropriate measures, such as using organic insecticides or fungicides, if necessary. Proper watering practices and good air circulation can help prevent fungal diseases.

How do I care for Calla Lily after blooming?

After the Calla Lily has finished blooming, you can cut back the spent flowers and stems to encourage new growth and potentially more blooms. Allow the foliage to die back naturally, and then cut it back to the soil level. Reduce watering during the dormant period to allow the plant to rest. If you are growing Calla Lilies in containers, you can repot the plant every two years to ensure proper growth and development.

Additional Resources

Here are some additional resources that provide information on how to grow and care for calla lilies: