Calla Lily Care

Overview

Calla lilies are native to tropical marshlands. These tropical plants produce beautiful, distinctive white flowers that can last for three to four weeks. A single calla lily can produce a number of sequential flowers. They can flower for months at a time, depending on the variety. Caring for your calla lily is not difficult if you follow some guidelines.

Light

Calla lilies grow in the wild under the protective cover of trees and other brush. Calla lilies do best in very bright, indirect light. Calla lilies won't do well in shade, and may suffer from leaf burn in bright, direct sun. If possible, keep your calla lily opposite a brightly lit window.

Water

Calla lilies, as tropical marsh plants, require a lot of water. They will not tolerate drying out, especially in hot, dry climates. Keep the soil in your calla lily's pot moist, but not wet. Don't allow it to dry out. In some climates, you may need to water your calla lily every two or three days. In more humid, cooler climates, you may be able to water once a week.

Fertilizer

In some cases, you can keep your calla lily blooming year-round by adding fertilizer. Keeping your lily blooming requires a lot of fertilization, but you need to be careful of over-fertilization. Organic liquid fertilizers, like fish or kelp emulsion, can add the nutrients your plant will need while minimizing the risk of over-fertilization. Fertilize your lily every two months with the emulsions diluted according to the manufacturer's instructions. Look for signs of leaf burn over time as they could indicate over-fertilization.

Repotting

Re-pot your calla lily every 18 to 24 months to keep it from becoming root bound. If you want to grow your calla lily to a larger size, plant your existing plant in a pot that is about 50 percent larger than its current pot. In some cases, it may have grown tight in the pot. Carefully loosen the roots and bulb with a small hand shovel.

Thinning

If you want to maintain your calla lily's size, remove it from its pot every 18 to 24 months. Split the plant in two and replant 1/2 of the plant in the original pot and plant the other half in a similarly sized pot. This will prevent your calla lily from becoming pot bound.

Keywords: calla lily care, calla lily fertilizaion, calla lily cultivation

About this Author

Christopher Earle is a freelance writer based in Denver, Colo. He has been writing since 1987 and has written for National Public Radio, the Associated Press, the Boeing Company, Ford New Holland, Microsoft, Active Voice, RAHCO International and Umax Data Systems. He studied creative writing at Mankato State University in Minnesota.