Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Calla Lillies

For Mellow Yellow Monday, I posted a picture of a friend's window box with some brilliant yellow calla lillies.  All I'd ever seen in the past were the white ones, many times growing wild in fields.  I wondered if callas grew in any other colors so I went to the trusty internet to read up on them.  I really wasn't very familiar with the flowers at all.  I found out that they are native to South Africa.  They are not true lillies but a genus ( Zantedeschia )  of herbaceous flowering plants in the family Araceae.

The plants are quite hardy and can grow in varying soils and conditons as long as there is sufficient water and little frost.  They are commercially grown in several areas of the world, being in great demand for wedding bouquets. 

The plants are poisonous because of their calcium oxalate content.  The roots are the most dangerous.  Eating the plant and roots may cause Burning in mouth and throat swelling of the mouth and tongue, redness, swelling, pain, and burning of the eyes, diarhhea, nausea, and
vomiting.  For known ingestion of any part of the plant, seek immediate medical help, wipe out the mouth and give milk, if the patient is not vomiting.  If possible, note the time and amount of the plant eaten.  Contact the National Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222) from anywhere in the United States for instructions by professionals in the field and get the patient to a hospital.

The calla lilly grows from bulbs - or rather, rhizomes, and spreads by reproducing more of its own.  With minimal effort, you can soon have a whole garden of these beautiful flowers.

As for colors, I cannot believe the variety of colors available.  I checked one site, Pacific Callas, and was amazed at the choices.  Some are relatively inexpensive - the more common colors are $3.75/bulb ( minimum purchase 3 bulbs ) and the rarer colors are $12.75/bulb ( they didn't specify a minimum ).

Garnet Glow Callas from Pacific Callas - $3.75/bulb - minimum 3

Captain Maori Callas from Pacific Callas - $12.75 per bulb

Golden Chalice Callas from Pacific Calla - $3.75 per bulb - minimum purchase - 3

Red sox calla from Pacific Calla - $8.50/bulb - minimum 3

Calla lillies come in tradiational large size, with a greater variety of color available in the dwarf varieties.  They are available as cut flowers for weddings and other occasions.  For those without green thumbs, they seem to be fairly hardly flowers that do very well in many climates.
With the great variety of colors, they would create a very showy landscape.




  1. Hi Carmen! Lovely flowers; even the yellows... ;))

    Blogtrotter Two has a French party for you in Turkey... ;) Enjoy and have a great week!!

  2. Hmmm, wonder if they'd grow outside in Colorado...because now I want some.

  3. I love the top pink ones. It's always hard to believe that something so lovely can be poisonous.

  4. That's what Crystal had in her bouquet...white calla...gorgeous!

  5. I love the Garnet Glow Callas from Pacific Callas-they look like Valentines!

  6. These are really nice looking flowers. Each kind isjust as beautiful as the last.

  7. The beautiful flowers look very delicate.
    Your splendid photography presents them before my eyes.

    Thank you for showing a wonderful view.

    From the Far East.
    Best regards.

  8. I love calla lillies, Carmen! There are so many beautiful colors I to see, but can't grow them here.

  9. those are all beautiful carmen!

  10. you know i had always assumed that lillies were just white. those are beautiful

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