How To Winterize Calla Lily Bulbs


Calla lilies are flowering plants with long, strong stems. The flowers are delicate curled tubes. They are often used in weddings, or in spring flower arrangements. The lilies grow from rhizomes, which continue to bloom year after year. Special care is needed to winterize calla lily rhizomes.

Step 1

Allow the foliage of the calla lily plant to die back naturally during the fall. Cut off all of the dead leaves and flowers, and discard them.

Step 2

Dig up the calla lilies' rhizomes (nubby bulb-like root) from the soil. Shake off the loose dirt, and use your fingers to remove as much of the caked-on dirt as you can.

Step 3

Leave the rhizomes in the open air, in direct sunlight, for three to five days. This will allow them to dry out completely in preparation for storage.

Step 4

Fill an opaque plastic container half-way with peat moss. If you have a large number of rhizomes, use several containers or one large one.

Step 5

Place the rhizomes on top of the peat, and cover with another layer of peat. Do not tamp down on the peat. The rhizomes need to breathe, and leaving the peat loose keeps pockets of air around them.

Step 6

Store the containers in a cool, dark, dry area of your home. The temperature of the storage area should be between 50 and 60 degrees F. Basements and garages are ideal.

Tips and Warnings

  • Lilies produce oxalic acid, which is harmful to humans and pets. If you have small children or curious pets, grow your lilies where they cannot be reached. Wash your hands after gardening.

Things You'll Need

  • Peat moss
  • Opaque plastic container with a lid


  • Hortchat: Calla Lilies
  • The Flower Expert: Calla Lily
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About this Author

Cyn Vela is a freelance writer and professional blogger. Her work has been published on dozens of websites, as well as in local print publications. Vela's articles usually focus on where her passions lie: writing, web development, blogging, parenting, gardening, and health and wellness. She studied English literature at Del Mar College, and at the University of Texas at San Antonio.