This article was last updated by on

How to Make Calla Lily Flower Bloom?

Calla lily (genus Zantedeschia) is a popular bouquet flower and comes in various colors such as white, orange, pink, red, yellow, purple, green, and black.

The Calla lily flower is native to South Africa and has sleek, elongated blooms that look elegant. Yet the plant is considered a weed in its native.

Generally, Calla lily blooms for 6 to 12 weeks in late spring and continues to bloom throughout the summer. The flowers are highly toxic and can grow up to 8 inches long. They are often decorated with white freckles and do not have much scent.

A single white Calla Lily flower
White Calla lily (Source: Unsplash)

You can quickly grow Calla lily in your garden with little care and attention. Continue reading to learn everything you need about the Calla lily flower.

How Often does the Calla Lily Flower?

The Calla lily is a lovely, easy-to-grow floral home plant that blooms profusely.

They only flower when they are mature and flower for 6 to 12 weeks in late spring, depending on the variety. For the plant to mature, it could take up to three years.

In ideal conditions, Calla lilies start blooming in late spring and continue to bloom throughout the summer.

calla Lily
Calla lily Flowers (Source: Flickr)

Calla lilies are available all year round, and their bloom will stay fresh for seven to ten days.

On the other hand, the plant can live for many years; typically, they go dormant in the fall and come back in the spring.

Calla lily plants are perennials and can rebloom in the spring even after cutting.

As the flower is the main attraction of Calla lilies, people would gladly allow blooms to flourish on the Calla lily plant.

The Calla lily is feasible to grow both inside and outside, and it is simple to care for if you follow the basic instructions.

Overview of Calla Lily Flower

Did you know that the genus, Zantedeschia, was named in honor of the Italian botanist Giovanni Zantedeschi?

The common name, Calla, is derived from the Greek word for beautiful. Despite its name, they are not an actual type of lily.

Furthermore, these lovely flowers are grown widely on the island nation of Saint Helena.

The flower comes in different color variations. They often change colors and turn brown when the plant enters its dormancy.

Here is a brief overview of the Calla lily Flower.

Scientific NameZantedeschia aethiopica
Common NameCalla lily, Arum lily
Plant TypeRhizome, Perennials
Flower SizeStandard: 4-8 inch long
Miniature: 3 inches or less
Mature Size2-3 feet tall,
1-2 feet wide
Bloom TimeSpring and Summer
Flower ColorWhite, orange, pink, red, yellow, purple, green, black
USDA8 to 10
FragranceFresh and floral scent
ToxicityToxic to humans and pets

Pollination of Calla Lily Flower

Pollination is an essential part of the life cycle of a Calla lily which results in seeds that later grow into new plants.

Calla lilies cannot self-fertilize; they require pollen from another plant for pollination to occur.

Butterfly on a Calla Lily Flower
Butterfly on a Calla lily Flower (Source: Pxhere)

Calla lilies need external pollinators like bees, beetles, and ants to transfer pollen from another flower.

On average, the Calla lily has 15 anthers for each ovary and 400–1500 anthers and 40-100 ovaries per spadix.

Although it is best to encourage cross-pollination through the natural agents, you can still hand-pollinate Calla Lilies to produce hybrids.

You will simply need two things; gardening gloves and a Q-tip.

Firstly, select the Calla Lilies you want to breed. Now using a Q-tip, collect the pollen from its bloom.

To gather the pollen, gently rub the Q-tip over the flower’s stamens.

two purple calla lilies
Purple Calla Lilies (Source: Flickr)

Next, place the Q-tip on the Stigma of a different plant’s flower and rub the ends over the Stigma of the plant.

This way, you can easily transfer the pollen and fertilize the flower.

Repeat this technique with all your flowers to promote variation and a large number of seeds.

Eventually, when the flower blooms wither, they leave a mature pod filled with Calla lily flower seeds.

How to Make a Calla Lily Plant Flower?

If you want to grow Calla lily, spring is the right time to plant them. By early to mid-summer, the blossoms will be visible.

Calla lilies are easy to grow, but there are specific requirements that you should take care of. Let’s look at them.

  • Water the Calla lilies weekly or more frequently if the weather is hot and dry. But avoid over-watering as it stresses the plant and hinders bud production.
  • The Calla lily plant flowers best when the temperature is between 60-80 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • A well-balanced light liquid fertilizer works well for Calla lily. Every other week, use a balanced NPK ratio of 5-10-10 with a low nitrogen value to encourage its bloom.
Colorful Calla lilies (Source: Unsplash)
  • Sunlight exposure is very crucial for Calla lily to bloom. They prefer partial shade if the weather is hot and humid, but they may tolerate full sun in a moderate climate.
  • For full blooming, the Calla lily plant demands nutrient-rich, slightly acidic soil with a pH of 5.6–6.5. Use a high-quality potting soil made up of 60% coco peat, 20% fine Finnish peat, and 20% coarser Finnish peat.
  • Calla lily can flourish in normal room humidity levels as long as the soil is moist. If you have Gardenia indoors, you can mist the foliage or use a humidifier to add moisture.

Common Problems Associated with Calla Lily Flower

Calla lilies are usually trouble-free and are a low-maintenance plant. You must be careful with aphids, spider mites, slugs, and rot.

Sometimes Calla lilies can produce blossoms with faded colors, drooping petals, and no flowering.

Let’s look at the most common problems.

1. Fading of Flower Colors

Calla lilies may lose their color or turn yellow if the lighting is poor.

If you’re going to put a Calla lily indoors, make sure it’s in a room with plenty of natural light.

If you cannot provide the plant with sufficient natural light, supplement the plant with artificial lights.

On the other hand, avoid placing Calla lilies in a place that is overly warm or light when planting them outside.

Get them into some shade, either total or partial.

2. Flower Not Blooming

When nitrogen levels are too high, Calla lilies may stop blooming and promote foliage growth.

For Calla lily to blossom fully, use a fertilizer with more phosphorus than nitrogen.

man watering indoor plant sitting near the window
Men Watering Indoor Plants (Source: Freepik)

Also, Calla lilies do not bloom when they are underwatered. Make sure the Calla lily receives adequate water.

If Calla lilies receive too much or too little sunlight, that could be another factor preventing them from flowering.

3. Flowers Drooping

Calla lily flowers can droop when the plant is under-watered or the moister level is low.

So, water the Calla lily routinely and maintain the proper moisture level to prevent the flower from drooping.

flower drooping and being sad illustration
Flower Drooping (Source: Wikimedia)

Another reason it might be drooping may also be from excess nitrogen or a fungal root rot disease.

Or perhaps the blooms are too huge, and the stems cannot support the entire flower.

To ensure that your Calla lily blooms magnificently, look for potential problem signs and take appropriate measures.

What Should you do with Calla Lily Plant Flowers?

Like any other plant, the Calla lily needs a period of dormancy once the flower starts to fade.

Typically, you’ll see the signs in the leaves as they turn yellow and eventually brown.

Calla lilies roll up like a tube after their blossoms start to fade. Simply clip off the faded flowers.

Calla lily (Zantedeschia aethiopica)
Two Calla lilies in a garden (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Basically, you should deadhead the flowers for two reasons:

  • Deadheading allows large and healthy rhizomes to grow. It will enable the plant to use its energy to make continuous blooms.
  • Clipping dead flowers make the plant look tidy, as the flowers are grown for their aesthetic appeal.

Use sharp pairs of scissors and a set of garden shears to clip the stem off.

Uses of Calla Lily Plant Flowers

Calla lily is a symbol of purity and beauty. The flowers are widely appreciated for their floral arrangements.

They have become one of the essential varieties of cut flowers in the international market due to their gorgeous and elegant appearance.

Calla Lily Bouquet
Calla lily in a Bouquet (Source: Pixabay)

Their excellent decorative effect is mainly used to make bouquets, garlands, flower baskets, etc.

Every Calla lily color has a symbolic meaning. Let’s look at them here.

WhiteSymbol of innocence and youth
YellowSignifies sense and gratitude
PinkPortrays love and appreciation
PurpleRepresents royalty, loyalty, wisdom and admiration
BlackSymbolises elegance, beauty and mystery
RedConveys courage and determination

The Calla lily flower is highly toxic, but the plant’s underground stem or rhizome is often used for medicinal treatments in South Africa.

People simply boil the leaves and rhizome in milk and use them as a wound dressing. Further, the boiled leaves can also cure minor headaches.

Besides, did you know how Calla lily got its name as the flower of death?

It is because people often bought Calla lilies at funerals, as it was a custom to come with white flowers in European countries.

Calla lilies bloomed beautifully on the grave of the deceased. And just like that, it got named the flower of death.

Health Considerations to Keep in Mind

Calla lily flowers are poisonous to humans, dogs, cats, and most other animals.

According to ASPCA, Calla lily contains excessive calcium oxalate crystals and alkaloids.

A Dog With A Potted Pothos Plant
A Dog With A Potted Plant(Source: Sprouting Indoors)

The calcium oxalate crystals present in them can irritate the tissues of the tongue, throat, and gums. Ultimately upsetting the stomach.

The juices of Calla lily can also cause swelling and burning sensations along with pain, watery eyes, redness, and even damage to the cornea.

If you suspect that your pets have consumed a part of Calla lily, look for the following clinical signs:

  • Oral Irritation
  • Intense Burning
  • Irritation of mouth, tongue, and lips
  • Excessive drooling, vomiting, difficulty swallowing

If you or your pets ever encounter a problem caused by this plant and its flower, remember the following numbers.


Calla lilies are beautiful flowers that deserve a spot in your garden.

With their rich and brilliant colors, they will provide a spectacular effect. Also, they are simple to grow and maintain.

Follow the instructions in the article to maintain your Calla lilies in bloom.

Want to read more about the flowers of the Araceae family? Read articles on Purple Anthurium and Peace Lily.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like