Last winter, I bought five Zantedeschia Aethiopica or “Calla Lily” rhizomes. They’re not very cheap compared to the cost of other bulbs, corms and rhizomes so it was a bit of a special treat. I restricted myself to this particular white variety as they are supposed to be hardy, the coloured ones are not. I couldn’t find any definite information what the right growing conditions should be so they ended up being scattered about the garden.
- There’s one under the birdbath where the soil is heavy clay and almost constantly wet from birds splashing water in their bath
- There’s one under the cherry tree in a somewhat drier and shadier location
- There’s one on the patio in full sun in a black plastic pot, which itself is within a terracotta pot that has no drainage holes. I keep it topped up with water like a mini-marginal plant. I got this idea from seeing a group of callas planted like this in a much larger pot at an NGS garden, the result was very beautiful
- This one is planted under an arching shrub in partial shade
- There is supposed to be a fifth one, but I’ve completely forgotten where I planted it! I’ve absolutely no idea where is it and I can’t find it anywhere. I’m obviously loosing it.
The one in the pot had to be moved from where it was originally planted as it was close to a concrete wooden tree round and so passing feet would regularly snap off the growing tip, it happened so often that I moved it to the pot to rescue it. Even now it’s trying to grow its first leaf from the snapped tip. I couldn’t blame it if it decided to give up, keel over and die.
Although not strictly a scientific experiment, the one planted in wet clay by the bird bath is having a better time than others and gave me the first flower.
This one is planted in a bit of an awkward spot so this was tricky to photograph. I do like the very pure cream-white form of the flower. If these plants do make it through the winter (as they’re supposed to with a bit of mulch), I still feel it’s going to take a few years to get established plants with multiple flowers, but I can wait.