How to Trim Calla Lilies

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Calla lilies are beautiful flowers often used in wedding bouquets. Most varieties consist of large blooms that resemble colored, curved leaves. These perennial plants can grow in almost any soil, so it’s no wonder garden enthusiasts consider trimming Calla lilies for propagation. Cutting at the proper angle and preserving the calla lily can keep them alive after the first bloom.

Difficulty: Moderate



Things You’ll Need:

  • Vase with water
  • Cloth
  • Sharp knife
  • Flower food
  1. Lay the calla lily on its side on top of a soft cloth, which should be close to calla lily’s length. Make sure the leaves and blooms are spread out to prevent any unnecessary bends in the stems during cutting.

  2. Locate the area of the stem where you plan to trim. Ensure your stem is long enough to keep the blooms outside the vase. Angle your knife towards the stem and cut in one slice.

  3. Pull slightly on any dead or brown leaves to see if they fall off on their own. Cut as close to the connection between the remaining leaf parts and the stem as possible.

  4. Place the calla lily in water that’s at least 40 degrees Fahrenheit immediately after trimming to preserve color and freshness. Add flower food to the vase per instructions on the flower food packet

Tips & Warnings

  • Wait until the calla lily spathes (blooms) are fully opened and pollen is still present before trimming.

  • Ensure your knife is sharp. Dull blades can damage the stem’s ability to properly absorb and transfer water, which can cause the trimmed areas to die off.

  • If you have no flower food, you can use a teaspoon of any carbonated beverages that contain citric acid.

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