How Long Do Potted Calla Lilies Last?

Calla lilies are one of the most beautiful of potted plants, with their elegant, sophisticated blooms. If you have been thinking about growing some of these gorgeous bulbs, you may be wondering how long you can expect them to last, and if they can be kept to rebloom again.

When growing potted calla lilies, plan on 6 weeks of foliage growth, followed by 6 to 8 weeks of blooms. They can be grown indoors in the winter, or outdoors in the summer, and with proper care will last for many years.

How to Care for Potted Calla Lilies?

  1. Keep the soil of your potted calla lilies consistently moist, but never soaking wet. Water whenever the top of the soil is dry to the touch, but never leave them in standing water.
  2. As soon as the bulbs start to sprout, use a water-soluble fertilizer once a month, applied to the soil right after watering.
  3. Set the pot in a warm spot with bright, indirect light.
  4. Once the flowers are done, cut off the spent blooms, stop fertilizing and let the foliage die down naturally.

Can Calla Lilies Survive the Winter in Pots?

Calla lilies can survive the winter in pots as long as they are protected from freezing temperatures. If you have a sheltered place such as a garage or unheated basement, the bulbs will stay safe in their dormant stage until spring, when they will still start to sprout.

Potted Calla Lilies Temperature Tolerance?

Calla lilies are tropical plants that will not tolerate cold temperatures. They grow best between 60 to 80°F (15 to 27°C), and will respond to temperatures below 50°F (10°C) by becoming dormant until warmer weather returns. Temperatures below 25°F (-4°C) will kill the bulbs.

Do Potted Calla Lilies Come Back Each Year?

Potted calla lilies are tropical perennials and will grow year after year as long as they receive adequate care, including protection from freezing temperatures in winter, and regular watering and fertilization during their growing season.

You should repot calla lilies in spring before they start sprouting, as the rhizomes will have grown crowded and can be separated to plant out in additional pots.

When Should You Plant Calla Lilies in a Pot?

The best time to plant calla lily bulbs in a pot is in early spring, just as the dormant bulbs are getting ready to start sprouting.  

Use large containers that can accommodate the extensive root systems the bulbs will develop over the growing season. Fill the pots with rich, organic soil and then nestle the rhizomes about a hand’s length under the surface, with the eyes pointing upwards. Water them well and keep the pots in a warm spot with indirect light.

How Long Do Potted Calla Lilies Take to Grow?

Once the bulbs start sprouting in spring, the foliage will grow for about 6 weeks, followed by about 2 months of long-lasting, fragrant flowers.

Can You Force Calla Lilies for Winter Blooms Indoors?

You can force calla lilies to bloom indoors in winter, but do not expect your summer-blooming bulbs to perform twice in one year. Instead, use separate bulbs for your indoor winter pots. Pot them up in late August or September, and keep them well-watered in a warm, bright location in your home. They should be blooming by New Year’s Day.

Just be careful to keep your potted calla lilies out of reach of children and pets, as they are toxic when ingested.

How Long Will Potted Calla Lilies Last Inside?

Potted calla lilies will last from 1 to 2 months indoors. Just keep them well-watered, and out of drafts and away from heating vents, in bright indirect light. Once the flowers fade, cut them off and let the foliage naturally yellow. Then trim them off at soil level and let the bulbs rest until autumn.

Final Thoughts

Calla lilies have long been a favourite potted plant, because of their spectacular, long-lasting flowers with a sweet fragrance. Whether you use them outdoors in summer on your patio or porch, or indoors  for winter colour and scent, these tropical beauties are easy to grow year after year.

See how long other potted plants last: