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A Complete Care Guide on How to Successfully Grow a Calla Lily

A Complete Care Guide on How to Successfully Grow a Calla Lily

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Notes

The indoor calla lilies are elegant plants that are easy to care for and will surely spruce up any indoor garden. Because of its distinctive appearance and feel, this houseplant is popular among plant collectors.

In this post, we’ll go over the most significant tips and methods for effectively growing a Calla Lily!

If you’re pondering about getting one for yourself, we have a few affordable alternatives for you to consider. Continue reading to learn more about this Zantedeschia Spreng’s exciting attributes.

What Is Calla Lily?

This beautiful plant is ideally placed indoors near an east or west-facing window. When grown outdoors, it is recommended for USDA hardiness zones 8-10 for higher survivability. Also known as Zantedeschia, Arum Aethiopicum, and Arum Lily, this stunning plant is famous for its meaning purity, holiness, and faithfulness. It belongs to the Araceae family.

Origin And Family

The Zantedeschia genus belongs to the Zantedeschia Spreng in the Araceae family. It comes from the coastal prairies and wetlands of South Africa, where there are warm climates. This plant has become in demand in recent years, thriving in most households with moderate to high humidity.

A Swedish botanist discovered Z. Aethiopica in the 18th century. It produces a variety of colors such as white, pink, red, and yellow calla lily flowers.

Where To Buy

If you are looking to score a Calla Lily, we have great buying experiences with online sellers from Etsy. The fairly expensive prices for this plant typically range between $45 and $65.

Calla Lily Plant Size

Indoors, Calla Lily plants reach a height of 24-36 inches. This Zantedeschia Spreng grows at a moderate-to-fast rate and beautifully thrives when placed near an east or west-facing window.

Calla Lily Care Needs

Calla Lilys are light-loving plants that need relatively moist soil throughout the year. Summertime is the best time to make sure that you put enough water on your plant. Keep pouring until water starts flowing out of the drainage holes. Make sure the catch plate is emptied to avoid root rot.

Read through this more detailed guide to care for your Calla Lily rhizomes!

Care Difficulty

With its water, light, and humidity needs, the Arum Aethiopicum is typically considered easy to care for. To successfully develop this plant, you’ll need to be particular with the amount of light and soil moisture.

Growth Rate

Arum Lily’s growth rate is typically moderate to fast. As it grows indoors, it should reach about 24-36 inches in height.

Potting

Zantedeschia Spreng plants, in general, prefer a well-draining pot. A medium-sized pot is recommended for your Zantedeschia.

One of the main killers of houseplants is lack of drainage, which leads to root rot. Ensure that the pot you’re using has holes at the bottom to allow excess water to drain through.

Repotting

It’s vital to repot your Calla Lily if the roots look slightly crowded. Based on experience, this plant grows at a relatively moderate to fast rate. While repotting, you can give your Zantedeschia Spreng a nutrient boost by adding rich, moist, well-drained soil to replace the old material.

Soil

A rich, moist, well-drained soil is the most recommended option for the Arum Aethiopicum. To create your own soil mix, use components such as coco peat and peat moss. Adjust the ratio as necessary to ensure that the final mixture is well-aerated. Remember that this plant prefers a relatively wet medium for growing.

The type of soil should always aid good drainage to avoid root rot and other diseases. We suggest selecting potting mixes such as the following:

pH

For the Arum Lily, you’ll need a slightly acidic soil with around 5.6 to 6.5 pH. In most cases, rich, moist, well-drained soil is close to this pH level, so this shouldn’t be a prime concern. Perform a pH test to check if your soil has the right acidity. There are affordable pH meters available online or at garden centers. To enhance the pH level of your soil, add calcitic or dolomitic lime, wood ash, or baking soda. To lower it, you can use sulfur or aluminum sulfate.

Water

Zantedeschia is a light-loving plant that needs relatively moist soil throughout the year. During the early spring and throughout the late summer, water your plant regularly but enough to not put too much water. Drench the soil until water streams out the hole at the bottom of the pot. Make sure to discard the water when using a collection tray to fend off root rot and other diseases. In the winter, it won’t be necessary to water as much to avoid the danger of frost during cooler climates and in colder areas or colder zones. You still have to water your plants deeply but do it less frequently.

Light

This houseplant prefers plenty of light but is indirect for approximately 6 hours a day. Too much light, and their blooms won’t be as impressive. Too little light, and they will not bloom. If you’re worried that your Calla Lily isn’t getting sufficient light, you may need to move it near a window or consider using artificial lights. Here are some basic options for you to consider:

Avoid putting your Calla Lily in direct sunlight, as this could severely damage or even kill it.

Fertilizer

Plants, like people, need more food when they are actively growing because they are using up a lot of their energy. For the Arum Aethiopicum, this growth spurt usually happens in late spring and summer. During this time, you can use a well-balanced fertilizer or a liquid fertilizer. In the winter, there is no need to apply fertilizer because plants’ roots usually go dormant in the cold. This means they won’t be needing extra food for growth. 

Propagating Calla Lily

It is possible to propagate a Zantedeschia with suitable methods. Here are various techniques for propagating this stunning houseplant.

Division

Arum Lily can be propagated through a method called division. While this technique is used for vegetables with distinct bulbs, stolons, tubers, rhizomes, and suckers, it can also be applied for houseplants with stems that grow in clumps.

1. Dig up. Remove the plant from its pot. When working with plants and soil, always wear gardening gloves.

2. Separate. You should be able to spot where the roots and stems parted on their own. Pull them apart gently with your fingertips. Remove the roots where the parts join.

3. Repot. Place each section in fresh pots filled with the same soil as before.

Humidity And Aeration

Calla Lily is a beautiful perennial that loves moderate to high humidity. For best results, we recommend keeping the air humidity levels around 65-75%. Your plant will require sustenance from the moisture in the air in addition to receiving water via its roots. You may keep bowls of water around to evaporate, or you can invest in a humidifier, which will provide more regular humidity for your plant.

Temperature

The ideal temperature for your Arum Lily is between 60-80 degrees Fahrenheit. Because of its tropical nature, this tropical plant will appreciate being kept near sunny window locations or in warm areas where there is a warm environment.

More importantly, make sure you avoid any abrupt spikes or drops in temperatures. Don’t use hot or cold water to water your Arum Lily so its roots won’t go into shock.

Flowers

If you’re lucky, you could possibly witness your Zantedeschia blooming with significant white, pink, red, and yellow elegant flowers. However, this doesn’t commonly happen in an indoor growing location.

Toxic

Keep an eye on your small children or animals. The Arum Aethiopicum is toxic to both pets, such as cats and dogs, and people. Expect the following symptoms if ingested: pain, difficulty swallowing, temporary hoarseness and swelling, pawing at the mouth, drooling or foaming at the mouth, and even transient vomiting. In most cases, this plant is considered with no life-threatening outcomes.

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Pests, Diseases, And Other Problems

The Calla Lily is not a disease and pest-resistant plant. Here are some of the frequent diseases, problems, and pests, along with the best way to treat them.

Spider Mites

Houseplants can sometimes bring in unwanted visitors to your home in the form of pests. The spider mite is such an example. Although the larvae are not visible, adult mites can be seen scampering around when disturbed. Spraying diluted neem oil on the leaves of your plants can help eliminate spider mites in their larval stage. Organic Pyrethrin sprays are also excellent at killing adult mites. When spraying pesticides inside, pick products that are not dangerous to people if inhaled.

Fungus Gnats

If you notice your Zantedeschia suddenly wilting, yellowing, or growing slower than usual, it may be a sign that your plant has fungus gnats. These gnats look like a tinier version of mosquitoes that lightly flutter about your plant. When you spot these moisture-loving pests, keep the topsoil dry by switching to bottom-watering instead of pouring water from above. Another resort is to sprinkle diatomaceous earth on your topsoil. This will dehydrate the larvae and dissuade the adults from laying more eggs.

If the infestation is severe, fungus gnat larvae can be killed by drenching the soil with one part of hydrogen peroxide mixed to four parts of water.

Powdery Mildew

Powdery mildew is a fungal infection that is triggered by heat and poor air circulation. It is identified by white spots or web-like substances that will quickly cover your Arum Lily’s leaves.

Here is a simple homemade mixture to treat powdery mildew: Mix 5 mL neem oil, 5 mL non-bleach mild dish soap, 3 grams baking soda, and 1 Liter water. Spray this solution on your plant’s leaves well and reapply as needed. To minimize leaf burn, keep your plant away from direct sources of light and heat after spraying.

White Flies

Whiteflies are triangular, grayish-white bugs that fly around like small moths. They can cause serious leaf damage by feeding on the sap of your Zantedeschia. You can vacuum off whiteflies and their eggs; however, be sure to empty your vacuum bag outdoors before the bugs get the chance to increase. If a severe infestation happens, spray the leaves with insecticidal soap, horticultural oil, or neem oil. These solutions will coat the eggs, larvae, and adults, thereby suffocating them. Reapply the chosen treatment as needed.

Scale Insects

Scale insects appear as lumps on the stems or leaves of your Calla Lily. These small bugs, which may be green, gray, brown, or black in color, usually remain sedentary once they’ve latched onto a plant. If the infestation isn’t too grave, you can dissuade scale insects from infecting your plant by mixing a teaspoon of neem oil in four glasses of water. Spray the plant aggressively with a spray bottle. Neem oil and horticultural oils may not extinguish the bugs, but they will surely weaken them. There are various pesticide sprays for scales that are considered safe for indoor usage.

Aphids

Aphids are little insects that devour the leaves of your Arum Aethiopicum, causing black and brown spots. To manage an infestation, use insecticidal soap or neem oil. Dish detergent in low doses can also eliminate aphids without hurting your plant. Choose products that are fragrance-free, such as Ivory Liquid. Begin by mixing 1 teaspoon of dish soap in 1 gallon of water, then gradually increase the ratio as needed. Spray this solution on your infected plant, paying specific attention to the undersides of the leaves, where aphids are commonly located.

Mealybugs

Mealybugs may infest your Arum Lily. These little parasites damage your Zantedeschia Spreng by inserting a feeding tube into the plant tissues and sucking on the sap. They can eventually wither or even kill your plant. To get rid of them, soak a cotton swab in rubbing alcohol, then manually remove each mealybug using its tip. You can also spray neem oil on the leaves to suffocate these bugs. 

Brown Leaf Tips

One prevailing cause of browning edges on your Zantedeschia’s leaves is a soil build-up of salts and minerals. This usually happens if you apply too much fertilizer or if you use chemically-treated tap water. Another reason for browning leaf tips is the lack of moisture. Frequent watering of your plant appropriately will improve your indoor humidity.

Drooping Leaves

The leaves of your Calla Lily may begin to droop if it does not receive the right quantity of hydration and light. Check out our Water and Light tabs above to learn about the best ways to care for your plant. Low humidity also causes drooping leaves, so be sure to check the humidity levels in your environment and make sure they meet your plant’s needs.

Yellow Leaves

To identify the culprit as to why there are yellowing leaves on your Arum Aethiopicum, you may need to consider numerous variables. Is your plant getting too little or too much water? Is enough light reaching your plant? Have you lately fertilized your plant? Is the weather changing suddenly?

Needless to say, yellowing bottom leaves might simply indicate that your plant is developing and the leaf’s energy has been spent. Simply cut off the yellowing leaves so the plant may focus on developing new green leaves.

Root Rot

Poor drainage and overwatering are the two most common causes of rotting roots. Because root rot is often irreversible and deadly, prevention is of utmost importance.

Plant your Zantedeschia Spreng in rich, moist, well-drained soil and keep it relatively moist.

Similar Plants

Love Zantedeschia? Here are some other comparable plant options you should try:

Peace Lily – Perennial members of the Arums family include the Peace Lily. It is distinguished by its lance-shaped leaves and dark green foliage and is appreciated for its capacity to filter the air. Other names for it include spathe flower, and white sails.

Daffodils – Daffodils are said to represent friendship and new beginnings. They are among the first indications of spring and are closely linked to Easter. The daffodil is the official flower of the Chinese New Year and represents luck in China.
Tulips – One genus of perennial herbaceous bulbiferous geophytes that bloom in the spring is the tulip. Typically, the flowers are big, spectacular, and vibrantly colored—most often red, pink, yellow, or white.

Conclusion

Prized for its meaning purity, holiness, and faithfulness, Calla Lily is a beautiful decoration for your household and floral arrangements. If you follow our propagating tips, you’ll have no trouble growing this Zantedeschia Spreng.

Do you have a Zantedeschia in your collection? We’d love to see it! Please submit photos to [email protected], and we might post them on our blog!

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