Miniature calla lilies are popular house plants that bloom indoors if provided with adequate light and moisture. Minicallas are available in delicate shades of white, cream, apricot, pink, burgundy and lemon. Native to Africa, calla lilies are now found in semitropical and tropical gardens around the world. Calla lilies can grow in colder climates, but you must dug out and store the bulbs over winter. You can replant calla lilies in the spring, when the soil warms.
Calla lilies attract hummingbirds to the garden.
Calla lilies will grow well in containers placed in a sunny window or outdoors on a deck or patio. Plant in a container that is 12 or more inches deep and provides good drainage. When container planting, bulbs may be spaced 4 to 6 inches deep. Use a planting mixture of 1/3 peat moss and 2/3 quality topsoil. Calllas love moisture. The peat moss will help retain moisture, yet allow the container to drain. Calla lilies cannot live in standing, stagnant water.
Plant calla lily bulbs 2 to 3 inches deep in the soil, spaced 12 to 18 inches apart. Callas enjoy morning sun, doing best in locations where they are shaded from the hottest part of the day. Water daily to keep the soil evenly moist. Calla lilies can be left in the ground in U.S. Department of Agriculture hardiness zones 9 to 11. In colder climates, dig up the bulbs prior to the first frost. Place bulbs in moist peat moss in a sealed plastic bag or container, stored at 45 to 55 F. Replant the bulbs in the spring.
Long Lasting Cut Flowers
Cut calla lilies to allow at least one-third of the stem to remain attached to the plant. The stem and leaves provide food to the tuber or rhizome. When cutting flowers for a floral arrangement, take care not to bruise the flower or stem. Callas will last for several days. Change the water daily. Flowers cut for a wedding bouquet may drip and stain clothing. Place cut flowers in a dry vase to drip, then dip the ends in warm, not hot, melted wax to seal the stem before arranging.
Dividing Calla Lilies
In locations where calla lilies are left in the soil year-around, dig up clumps and divide every five to seven years. Gently separate the tubers and replant in new flower beds. You will have plenty of tubers to share with family and friends. Calla lilies spread and form large clumps. The flowers and greenery add visual impact, and floral beauty to urban landscapes and country gardens.