Although most commonly grown outdoors, calla lilies are perfectly viable as indoor plants in containers. In cold-winter areas, indoor growing protects the plant from frost, which can kill it. Calla lilies grow from a type of bulb called a rhizome. Indoors, the plant maintains green foliage year-round and will flower during the summer, often more than once. Ensure flowering by keeping the plant at a minimum 70 degrees F during the day and 55 at night. Bloom colors from different cultivars include white, yellow or red. Plant calla lilies indoors at any time of year.
things you’ll need:
- 12-inch pot
- Pot saucer
- Potting soil
- Broken pottery shards or gravel
- Put some broken pottery shards or gravel in the bottom of a plant pot which is at least 12 inches in diameter. Fill the pot to half its depth with potting compost.
- Place the calla lily rhizome in the pot, taking care to put it the right way up. The growing end of the bulb has an "eye"; make sure that this points upward.
- Fill the pot with more potting soil to within 1 inch of the rim. Firm the soil down gently, and water.
- Place the pot near a window. The plant should get at least some direct sunlight every day.
- Water the plant whenever the top of the soil is dry to the touch. Water until you see liquid emerging from the drainage hole. Place the pot on a holder or saucer, so the water does not spill.
- Drain water from the pot saucer if it has not been absorbed an hour after watering. This avoids leaving the calla lily standing in water, which can damage the roots.
- Add 5-10-5 or 5-10-10 fertilizer to the pot in spring to promote healthy growth. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions when applying the fertilizer.
- Repot the calla lily when it becomes rootbound. Roots growing out from the pot’s drainage holes indicate that the plant is too large for its pot. Carefully remove the plant from its pot and transfer it to a larger one with broken pottery and compost in the bottom. Fill the gaps in the edges and top of the new pot with potting compost and firmly tamp down.
- Propagate calla lilies by cutting offshoots growing from the rhizome in spring. Plant the offshoots in a 6-inch pot in potting compost, transferring the new plant to a larger pot in its second season.
Tips & Warnings
Add color to your patio or yard during summer by putting potted calla lilies outdoors when they bloom. Outdoors, slugs and snails like to feed on calla lilies, so protect them with a proprietary slug killer, taking care to follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
All parts of the calla lily are toxic, so exercise caution if there are children or pets in the house.