Calla lily flowers grow in full sun in mild and harsher climates. You can grow calla lilies indoors in containers or outdoors in your garden. In areas with warmer climates (zones 9 to 11 in the United States) calla lilies grow perennially all year long. In cooler climates, you can grow calla lilies as annuals or dig them up in autumn to replant the following year.
How To Grow Calla Lilies In Pots
Start your calla lilies from tubers or rhizomes – they can be started from seed, but it takes a long time and calla lily seeds do not have a high germination rate.
- Plant the dormant tubers in 6 to 8-inch (15 to 20 cm) pots a few weeks before the last frost is expected in your area. If you live in a warm climate or the threat of frost has already passed, you can plant the tubers directly in the garden.
- Bury the tubers 3 to 4 inches (7.5 to 10 cm) below the surface of the soil.
- Place the pots in a sunny window. Keep the soil moist until the plants begin growing and it is time to put them in the garden or transplant them into larger containers.
Plant Calla Lilies Outside
Choose an outdoor location that gets partial sun and retains moisture if you live in a hot climate.
Pick an area with full sun and moisture if you live in a cooler region.
- Prepare the soil by enriching the soil with organic mulch to help it retain moisture.
- Transplant the started plants or tubers into the ground once there is no threat of frost.
- Space the plants at least 12 inches (30 cm) apart. Some calla lilies grow as tall as 4 feet (1.2 m) with a leaf spread of 1 foot (30 cm) or more.
- Water the plants well and keep the soil moist throughout the growing season.
- Fertilize the flowers regularly using a water-soluble general plant fertilizer. You may need to fertilize more than normal when the plants are forming their flowers.
- Stop watering and feeding the plants at the end of the growing season as this allows the soil to dry out and the plants to die off. Leave the foliage in place, don’t cut it off. The leaves will gather sunlight and provide nourishment for next year. Leaves may be removed when they yellow.
- Even if you live in a warm climate, calla lilies need to go into a period of winter dormancy to bloom again the following year.
- In cold areas if you want to to save your calla tubers for next year dig them out of the ground before the first frost. Let the tubers air dry for several days. Then store in a cool location in paper bags or boxes filled with peat moss.