How to plant Calla

Callas (or Zantedeschia) are bright, colourful and really easy to grow. A popular choice with florists and all who love cut flowers, they’re also remarkably easy to grow. The best thing about growing your own, is that you can enjoy them in the garden as well as snipping some for your own cut flower arrangements. These elegant funnel-shaped blooms provide high-impact displays whilst requiring very little in terms of maintenance – ideal for pots and borders, you can pop these bulbs in wherever suits you and they will look great all summer long.

Calla planting basics

Callas like a rich but free-draining soil. If planting in containers, multipurpose compost is ideal. In borders, just make sure the soil isn’t too heavy by digging in a little compost or mulch first to aid drainage. Containers should be at least 20cm in diameter for one bulb. It is good to plant them in groups of three or more, in which case, you would need a pot which is around 30-40cm in diameter. Your Callas want bright, indirect light, but not full sun. Morning sun is quite mild, and your plants will be quite happy to get it, but afternoon sun is too strong for them and it can make the flowers fade quicker than they should.

How to plant Calla bulbs

— Callas are tender bulbs and require frost-free conditions in the spring. You can give them a head start by potting them up in March or April and growing them on in a greenhouse to transplant later, or you can plant them directly outside in early May.

Calla aethiopica is a hardy perennial variety, this type can be planted directly outside into pots or borders with moisture retentive soil.

— Grow in borders or containers in a bright position with filtered sunlight or partial shade.

— Ensure the soil is free-draining.

— Plant the tubers shallowly covered by around 1cm of soil.

— Plant with the ‘eyes’ facing upwards. If you’re not sure which is the correct way, you can plant them on their sides.

Planting instructions