How to Raise Calla Lily

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Calla lilies are not true lilies. They are summer-flowering bulbs that bloom from late spring through early summer, which lasts about six to eight weeks in length. Calla lilies reach 12 to 24 inches tall with pink, red, purple, white and yellow goblet-shaped flowers. These tropical-looking flowers are used as fragrant cut flowers and garden accents. Calla lilies do not require very much care to grow well.

Moderately Easy


things you’ll need:
  • Shovel
  • Garden hoe
  • Manure
  • Sand
  • Hand trowel
  • Sharp knife
  • Bin
  • Peat moss
    1. Remove the weeds and rocks from the planting area. Calla lilies prefer a planting site in full sun to partial shade. Dig the soil up to the depth of 6 to 8 inches with a shovel. Break the large soil clumps up with a garden hoe.
    2. Spread a 2- to 3-inch layer of well-rotted manure over the soil. Add a 1-inch layer of sand on top of the manure. Mix these two soil amendments into the loose soil.
    3. Dig the planting holes with a hand trowel deep enough so the top of the calla lily bulbs will be 2 inches below the surface. Space the lilies 18 inches apart. Cover the lily bulbs with soil and water the soil to the depth of 3 to 5 inches.
    4. Keep the planting area free of any weeds that will compete for nutrients and moisture in the soil. Once the calla lilies are fully grown, the abundant amount of leaves will shade out the weeds.
    5. Water the soil whenever the ground around the plants begins to dry out. Dig near a plant with a hand trowel and check to make sure the water has reached the depth of at least 3 inches. Keep the soil moist throughout the growing season even after the blooming is finished. The white-spotted leaves stay beautiful until the first fall frost when supplied with plenty of water.
    6. Dig the calla lily bulbs up with a shovel in the fall after the foliage begins to die. Cut the leaves back with a sharp knife to 2 to 4 inches and place in a bin full of peat moss. Store in a dry area with temperatures between 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Calla lily bulbs suffer damage and death when winter temperatures dip below 25 degrees Fahrenheit.

Tips & Warnings

  • Calla lilies prefer moist soil and do not like to dry out. These summer bulbs tolerate wet, soggy soil. They are a good choice for planting around water features in a garden like ponds.

  • All parts of a calla lily are toxic when eaten. Calla lily poisoning produces burning in the mouth, sore throat, tongue swelling, redness of eyes, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Do not plant calla lilies around curious children and browsing pets.

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