How to Plant Calla Lilies


Calla lily is the common name for Zantedeschia aethiopica. These plants are part of the Araceae family and not the Liliaceae (lily) family — which means the calla lily is not a true lily. Grown from rhizomes, calla lilies grow about 24 inches tall, form large green leaves and produce trumpet-shaped flowers in various colors. These flowers grow best in rich, moist soil in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 8 to 10 outside as perennial plants. Plant calla lilies in pots and containers in other areas, or dig up the rhizomes and store them during the winter season.

Difficulty: Moderately Easy


Things You’ll Need:

  • Shovel
  • Organic matter
  • Hand trowel
  1. Select a planting area for the calla lily that offers full sun to partial shade. Use areas that are shaded in the afternoon, if possible. Prepare the planting bed in the spring.

  2. Add a 3-inch layer of organic matter to the planting bed. Use organic matter such as compost, aged manure, peat moss, leaf mold and ground bark. Work the soil to a depth of 12 inches in the planting area.

  3. Use a hand trowel to dig holes 3 inches deep and spaced at least 4 inches apart. Place the calla lily rhizomes horizontally with the side with the most points facing up.

  4. Cover the calla lilies with soil. Soak the area with water to saturate the soil thoroughly.

  5. Maintain moist soil, but not soggy throughout the growing season (spring to fall) of the calla lilies. Callas bloom at the end of spring and many blooms for a second time in the fall.

Tips & Warnings

  • Plant three calla lily rhizomes in each 12-inch container or plant one per pot in smaller planters. Use top-quality potting soil and containers with drainage holes

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