Calla Lily – Zantedeschia aethiopica
Symbolism: Calla lilies carry dual symbolism, representing both life and fertility as well as death. In ancient Greek culture, they were thought to symbolize magnificent beauty, inspired by a tale about Hercules as a baby.
Description: Elegant and sleek, calla lilies feature pliable stems that can be curved into graceful silhouettes. Their trumpet-shaped blooms come in various shades, including white, cream, soft pink, pale yellow, orange, lavender, and mauve.
Named after: The calla lily is named after the Greek word for beautiful, calla.
Latin/Scientific name: Zantedeschia aethiopica
Native to: Southern Africa, specifically in Lesotho, South Africa, and Eswatini. They grow spontaneously in tropical marshes along the Transvaal rivers and other areas between the Equator and the Cape of Bonne Esperance.
Flowering period: Calla lilies bloom from 6 to 12 weeks in late spring and throughout the summer, depending on variety and geographic location Calla lilies do not all bloom at the same time.
Vase life: 7 to 10 days
Popular use in floral arrangements or bouquets: Calla lilies are often used in funeral arrangements and bouquets due to their association with death. However, they also feature in hand-tied bouquets, such as the Audrey, a which are popular for events like Rosh Hashanah. White and ivory calla lilies are classic choices for weddings.
When in stock in our shops: Year-round when available. Most commonly available for holidays like Passover, Christmas, and Easter.
Potted plant care
- Place the plant in bright, indirect light.
- Use high-quality, all-purpose potting mix. Repot annually before the growing season.
- Water the plant once a week, or more frequently during especially hot or drought-like conditions.
- Reduce watering when the plant enters dormancy around November.
Temperature & Humidity
- Calla lilies like fairly warm temperatures (60-80°F, 15-26°C) and a decent amount of humidity and moisture.
- Keep away from heating and A/C vents.
- Allow the plant to rest in a cool, dark area during dormancy.
- Apply liquid fertilizer monthly while in flower.
Transitioning Indoors to Outdoors
- Once the risk of frost has passed, you can grow your calla lilies in the garden, in pots, or in a border.
- Choose a bright well-lit spot out of the strongest midday sun.
- Avoid full shade, but plants will tolerate partial shade.
- Calla lilies must be sheltered from wind.