How to care for Calla lilies - expert tips to get beautiful blooms for longer

Discover how to care for Calla lilies for blooming beautiful flowers

how to care for cala lily in a vase
(Image credit: Alamy)

As they can take a little effort to maintain, learning how to care for Calla lilies will pay dividends when it comes to longer-lasting flowers.

And, while they can be an investment, they make a beautiful addition to any interior, making the extra effort worth it.

'Calla lilies make a showstopping houseplant,' states Whitney Bromberg Hawkings, co-founder of FLOWERBX. 'They are adorned with beautiful curved flowers that range in color from ivory to deep plum, with a sheer finish that makes them truly elegant.'

Sprout Home adds: 'Although normally seen in outdoor areas the Calla lily can make for a good indoor houseplant provided you care for them the way they need to be cared for.'

Calla lilies can be a little tricky to care for, so we've tapped the experts for some fail-safe tips below.

How to care for calla lilies

1. Place your Calla lilies in direct sunlight

how to care for cala lily by placing it in direct sunlight on a window ledge

(Image credit: Alamy)

Getting the light right is an essential element to consider for most houseplants; Calla lilies are no different, and thrive under the sun's rays.

'For the best chance at beautiful flowers for even longer, place your Calla lily in a perfectly bright, frost-free location, with access to direct sunlight,' says FLOWERBX (opens in new tab)'s Whitney Bromberg Hawkings. 

'Calla Lilies that are kept in a spot that is too shady are far more likely to see their flowering time diminished.'

She continues: 'Calla lilies love light! They require at least a couple of hours of good sunlight every day, so never put them in the dark. Placing them in an area that doesn’t get enough sunlight can also cause bacterial diseases like basal collapse.' 

2. Don't overdo it when watering

Calla lilies won't thrive if you get over zealous with your watering routine. 

Whitney advises: 'Usually, watering a Calla lily once a week will suffice, although you may want to up that if it's high summer or particularly hot.'

Sprout Home (opens in new tab) adds: 'Keep Calla lilies away from extreme temperature fluctuations and reduce watering in winter dormancy periods.'

3. Allow top soil to dry out between watering

'During flowering season, allow the top third of your Calla lily’s soil to dry out between watering,' advises Whitney. 

'In the autumn, you can reduce this time a little to encourage a beautiful new array of summer flowers.'

4. Feed your Calla lilies - they get hungry too

how to care for cala lilies by feeding them in this neutral living room

(Image credit: Alamy)

Calla lilies can be quite an investment, so ensuring that they look their best with regular maintenance is key.

Whitney says: 'Use a high-nitrogen feed fortnightly, and swap to a high-potassium feed during flowering season. Never mist your Calla lily flowers.'

Ruth Doherty is a lifestyle journalist based in London. An experienced freelance digital writer and editor, she is known for covering everything from travel and interiors to fashion and beauty. She regularly contributes to Livingetc, Ideal Home and Homes & Gardens, as well as titles like Prima and Red. Outside of work, her biggest loves are endless cups of tea, almond croissants, shopping for clothes she doesn’t need, and booking holidays she does.