Arum: planting growing maintenance flowering

Arums are sought after for their abundant flowering, which is both elegant and original. Their cornet spathes, which make it possible to create magnificent bouquets that hold well in a vase, are of great beauty. Depending on the variety, this bulbous blooms from May-June until September, bringing immaculate white or even very colorful notes to the garden. Let’s see how to grow this magnificent ornamental and what care it needs.

Plant calla lilies

These bulbous plants love rich and fresh soils. Arums appreciate sunny exposures et sheltered from prevailing winds. In the most southern areas, however, be careful of full sun in summer as this is very likely to lead to their rapid decline. A semi-shaded position may be preferable.

Planting takes place in the spring, when the earth is already well warmed up and the risk of frost has passed. The arum can be planted in the ground or in a pot.

Planting calla lilies in the ground

Start by preparing the soil with a spade to remove stones, weed roots and various plant debris, then amend it with ripe manure.

  • Dig holes (their size should be 3 times larger than the bulbs),
  • Place one bulb per hole, well at the bottom,
  • Fill the planting holes with the soil/manure mixture,
  • Water.

Planting a potted Arum

  • Choose a 25 cm diameter pot with a hole in the bottom,
  • Place a drainage layer at the bottom (clay balls, terracotta shards, gravel, etc.),
  • Cover the drainage layer with 5 cm of geranium soil or a mixture of potting soil and enriched topsoil,
  • Place a bulb in the center of each container,
  • Cover the bulb with the rest of the soil so as to cover it with a thickness equivalent to 2.5 of its diameter,
  • Tamp lightly around the bulb,
  • Water.

A constant humidity must be maintained thereafter, whether for arums in the ground or those in pots, without drowning them.

Growing arums

White, black, orange, yellow, powder pink… Arum is a must in gardens where you want to bloom profusely. It can also be called Calla or Zantedeschia, depending on the genus to which it belongs. Be that as it may, it is easy to afford different varieties, or even a few hybrids, in order to take advantage of their beauty but also – for some arums at least – of their sweet fragrance. This also allows for staggered flowering from mid-spring to late summer.

Entretenir l’Arum (Calla, Zantedeschia)

Once planted in the right conditions, calla lilies need simple care to grow and they do not pose any particular problems.


They are water guzzlers. The soil should always be moist. So don’t wait for it to dry out before watering again.


Arum needs extremely rich soil. It is therefore as greedy in nutrients as in water. Every year in early spring, it is absolutely necessary to amend the soil with organic fertilizer.


As for hybrids Rehmannii as well as hybrids Elliottiana, it is recommended to dig up the rhizomes before the first frosts, with a spade and without hurting them. These are colorful lilies that are not hardy. They must therefore pass the winter above ground, in a dry and cool room, but also blind (i.e. without window).

Arum flowering

Beautiful flowers can only be obtained by giving the Arum the care it absolutely needs. In addition, as soon as flowering is over, it is advisable to remove faded flowers.

The leaves must be preserved because it is thanks to them that the bulbs make reserves to be able to bloom again the following year. We must therefore wait until they are completely dry to cut them at the base, which should be done no later than the arrival of the first frosts. All that’s left is to protect the bulbs who will spend the whole winter in the garden, installing a thick mulch of dead leaves. As for those grown in pots, they must be indoors.

If we were used to seeing our calla lilies bloom every year and suddenly they no longer bloom, is that they lack water and/or nutrients. As mentioned above, these plants are very greedy. In addition to regular watering to keep the soil always moist, one or two organic fertilizer inputs are needed for arums, callas and zantedeschias in the ground, between May and September, and every 8 weeks for specimens in pots. Fertilizers are stopped when the flowering period is over.

Leave a Comment