Calla lilies (Zantedeschia spp.) Are indigenous to marshlands in South Africa, but also are popular flowers in the USA for weddings and at the Easter vacation. The calla lily grows from a bulb and performs best as a container plant unless exploded in U.S. Department of Agriculture hardiness zones hotter than station 8. Fertilization will encourage wholesome root growth and attractively colored flowers.
Fertilize in the Autumn
The best time to fertilize bulb plants like the calla lily is in late October and November or during the initial planting. Place slow-release fluid sticks deep in the soil within a few inches of the bulb and roots. The nutrients released from fluid sticks do not travel far in the soil and so won’t be effective if only pushed into the surface. An alternative to binder with poles is broadcasting a pelletized slow-release fertilizer over the surface in case you do not wish to disturb the soil so deeply.
Kind of Fertilizer
General objective fertilizers that contain equal amounts of all the significant nutrients will perform well with calla lilies. These are known as complete fertilizers and will be labeled with a ratio like 10-10-10 or 8-8-8. Container plants like the calla lily should be watered evenly so that roughly 10 percent of their water drains from the container. This will make sure that fertilizer salts do not build up around the fertilizer sticks and burn the roots. Optimum soil pH for bulbs is 6 to 7. If fertilization lowers the soil pH past this level, add lime to increase it back to acceptable levels.
When the calla lilies first sprout through the surface at the spring, you may add another round of fluid. Push the sticks deep into the soil again or, alternatively, lay them on the surface during watering of the plant to dissolve nutrients. If the foliage shows burned edges, remove the fertilizer. Once the calla lily starts to blossom, stop all outbreaks as continuing feeding at this stage encourages bulb rot.
Homemade Fertilizer Sticks
Fertilizers can be produced at home from natural elements and shaped into sticks or balls. To make homemade sticks with an nutrient ratio, mix 9 cups of cottonseed meal, 4 cups of bonemeal, 2 cups of fish meal, 3/4 cup of kelp meal, 4 cups of fish emulsion and 1 cup of liquid fertilizer. Adjust the liquid amount to permit you to roll up the mix by hand into rods. Allow the sticks dry in the sun before using with the lilies.