Calla lilies (Zantedeschia spp.) blossom in the late spring and early summer with bright or pastel shades of pink, red, purple, white and yellow cup-shaped blossoms. This variety of flower grows up to 30 inches tall with speckled, green leaves. Calla lilies are grown in containers, flowerbeds and borders. Calla lily flowers are commonly used as cut flowers, which will last for two weeks with plenty of fresh water. Calla lilies are planted in the spring when temperatures are above 55 degrees Fahrenheit. The lilies need 12 weeks of frost-free weather after planting.
- Moderately Easy
things you’ll need:
- Hand trowel
- Calla lily rhizomes
- Wood chips
- Clear an area in partial sun of all weeds, debris and grass. Calla lilies prefer morning sun and late afternoon shade. The soil should be moist to wet, since calla lilies like plenty of water.
- Loosen the soil to the depth of 12 inches with a shovel. Spread 3 to 4 inches of compost or manure on top of the soil. Mix this organic material into the loose soil.
- Mix 20-20-20 slow-release fertilizer into the top 6 inches of soil. Rake the soil smooth and level. Dig a hole 4 to 6 inches deep with a hand trowel. Place the calla lily rhizome, which looks like a small potato, in the hole. Adjust the depth of the hole so the top of the tuber is only 2 inches from the surface.
- Fill the hole with soil and do not compact it down over the top of the tuber. Plant the rest of the calla lilies 12 to 24 inches apart. Spread 1 inch of mulch-like wood chips over the calla lily planting area. The mulch will preserve the moisture in the soil.
- Sprinkle the area with water until the moisture reaches the depth of the tubers. Keep the calla lily bed moist. When the soil under the mulch begins to dry out, water again.
Tips & Warnings
Calla lilies are killed by temperatures below 25 degrees Fahrenheit. In areas with cold winters, dig the calla lily tubers up and store them in a box of dry peat moss. Keep them in an area with temperatures between 50 and 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
Calla lilies are poisonous because of the high amount of oxalic acid in all parts of the plants. When eaten, calla lilies cause burning in the mouth and throat, swelling of the tongue, pain in the eyes, vomiting and diarrhea. Some reactions are strong enough to be fatal in children and pets.