question about calla lily blooming

greenjesse(6)February 20, 2011

Ive had my calla lily for a year. I planted it from a bulb, inside in a pot. Does anyone know why it has not bloomed yet? The leaves look very healthy. Is it a lighting issue?

Also when the stems and leaves get really long they fold over and bend. It doesnt kill the leaf but I wanted to know if this was a sign of poor health.

One more question, is it hard to grow them in the ground in zone 6? Do they go into hybernation?

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Calla lilies are grown in full sun or semi shade with at least 4 hrs direct sun, the big white variety can tolerate more shade.

In natural cycle, like most bulbous aroids, the bloom start just after the dormancy period and continues till mid season. After that foliage gathers energy from sun and store it in the bulbous part of the plant. When the plant stops forming new leaves, which is just after the summer season, the watering should be lowered. Eventually the foliage dries down to the ground. The tubers should be dug out and stored in a cool & dry place. During the dormancy period the tuber utilizes its energy in making inflorescence spikes, if there's not enough energy the spikes are not formed. But such kind of malnourished tubers, when planted under optimal conditions, next summers, may bloom late in the season.

Many Callas do not go dormant and continue to form leaves, it happens due to the warmer temperatures (like here in our region) these form the inflorescence spike after every two to three months in summer and only foliage during cooler season..

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 1:11AM
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They don't really need dormancy ive noticed. Although it might be necessary if it hasn't bloomed in a long time

    Bookmark   March 18, 2011 at 10:45PM
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ok, so my next question is if its in a pot how do you make it go into dormancy and when?

    Bookmark   March 19, 2011 at 11:53PM
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eclayne(Z6a, MA)

I'm no expert but have been growing callas, mostly albomaculata but several other varieties as well, in zone 5b for about 20 years. Planted outside, these are mostly in the ground but a few in pots. After 1st frost you'll notice the leaves lie flat on the ground. This is the time to dig the corm, cut off the leaves and let dry out of the sun. I usually take them right to the basement and let them dry for 4 or 5 days there. Clean off the dirt and store them in cool dry spot for the winter. They can be planted back outside after last frost.

Mine do best in full sun with plenty of water, well draining soil with a good layer of mulch.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2011 at 11:34AM
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eclayne(Z6a, MA)

To be more specific and answer your question, after LAST frost I would put the pot outside. You are in zone 6 right? Keep in a sunny location, water well and after 1st frost follow previous advice. Here's what I include with bulbs I've given away or donated plant sales:

Zantedeschia albomaculata: Calla Lily

Form: Tender bulb. Exposure: Full Sun. Height: 24" (to 30" bloom). Spread: 18-24". Zone: 8-10. Flower Date: June-July.

>Planting Reqs: Plant 4-8" deep and 18-24" apart when all danger of frost has passed (last week of May in ELong.). I plant those in back 4" deep and those in front 6-8" then cover all with 2" of compost/mulch. Fertilize using a 5-10-10 or 5-10-5 fertilizer.

>Lifting Reqs: Lift the rhizomes after first frost, cut back stems, clean off excess soil, let dry out of the direct sun for a few days and then store in a dry location that remains between 50 and 60 degrees F. They can be divided before storage as long as the cut portions are allowed to dry. Doing so will prevent the open wounds from rotting. I use perlite in a PAPER bag. Check in late January. If rot is evident cut, scrape and clean off all rot. Coat cut surface liberally with powdered anti-fungal or cinnamon pushed firmly into flesh. Let dry and store.

>Soil Reqs: Slightly acidic (6-6.5) well drained, humus enriched sandy loam. Adding mulch to the soil will help maintain a constant soil temperature. This will help keep the plant stress-free. Mulch will also improve the texture of the soil and help hold in valuable moisture. Calla lilies thrive in well-drained, loose soil.

>Pruning: Remove spent flower stems to tidy up your plants and strengthen leaves and corm.

>Note: Watch out for Japanese Beetles.

Hope this helps.


    Bookmark   March 24, 2011 at 3:18PM
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Ok this is great advice thanks! I'm gonna do what u say

    Bookmark   March 25, 2011 at 6:48PM
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For the first time I planted my calla lilies in planter pots and some in the ground. I have had blooms every year for the past 8 yrs when I plant them in the ground. Will my calla lilies bloom in the pots outside? They are in full sun.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2011 at 10:33AM
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I've planted 3 rhizomes for calla lilies this year. They all came up with very generous size plants (like there were more that one rhizome in each place). My concern is that they haven't bloomed yet and I see no sign of a blossom developing anywhere. Two plants have solid green leaves, while one has white spots on the leaves, like in picture on the package. Any suggestions?

    Bookmark   August 11, 2011 at 4:59PM
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Im still stumped on this issue! Right now im following the advice about giving them fresh soil and bigger pots. Boy are the leaves really taking off though. Still no blooms. Im afraid to put them in the ground here bc the sun is too harsh. I put the pots outside oneday all day in the spot where i would have planted them and made sure the soil was moist but the plant almost died. I guess i just have to risk it bc all the advice i did get, they all say put them in the ground. Im going to try to over winter them and see about next year :(

    Bookmark   August 11, 2011 at 7:25PM
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wainui(Wellington N.Z.)

My wife and I grow about 100 pots of callas all the time. They stay in the same pot for two or three years depending on how crowded they get. When the leaves get yellow and start to die down we put them into our tunnel house and when the leaves have completly gone we stack them up and leave them until the start of spring.Outside they go all around the section exposed to the elements especially rain.Now we play the waiting game for the first sprout to appear and then we give every pot a good soak with Nitrosol which is probably not available in your country.The vital ingredient you must look for on the label of whichever fertilizer you feed them with is Gibberalic acid which is what commercial flower growers use only they use the acid alone. Here in New Zealand it costs a fortune and you cant get very small quantities.We have used it for years and its great for many other species of plants.I hope this helps and good luck.Love to hear if anyone gets the same results as us.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2011 at 6:57PM
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