Calla Lilies - how do I collect/store the seeds?


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I have never had calla lilies (white lilies) until we moved in the house we are currently living in. This year, they grew early as we had a warmish winter and they have grown in abundance - there are heaps of them. With the weather warming up, I have been watering them daily to try and keep them healthy.

I've noticed that each flower develops lots of seeds and I would really like to 'harvest' them so that I can store them away and maybe give some to a friend. However I have no idea on how to do this and was wondering if anyone could give any advice. At the moment, there are a few seed pods, in one of them the seeds are starting to turn orange. The weight of the pods are collapsing the stems.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you!
 
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Firstly I feel that I should just mention - that Calla Lilies are generally best propagated by dividing the rhizomes - as like many hybrid plants they rarely come true from seed - meaning that what you get when grown from seed is highly unlikely to look anything like the mother plant.

Anyways onto collecting the seeds - which is in fact relatively easy and from what you've said I would say that some of yours are already there - as although it can sometimes take several months for the seed cones to mature - you will know when they are ready - as the flower stem - due to their increased weight - will naturally bend until the cone is resting on the ground and once the kernels start to turn either orange or yellow and the cone feels soft to the touch - that is when the seeds are ready for harvesting.

Which is easily done by either cutting the cone from the flower stalk or cutting the whole flower stalk to the ground - after which gently squeeze the seeds out of each kernel and store in a dry dark place and as each kernel normally contains anything from between 1 - 5 seeds - it generally means that you are likely to get around 50 seeds from each cone.
Alternatively - if you want to postpone going through the process of collecting the seeds - as the seeds never actually dry out and are protected inside the kernel - you can just place the whole cone in warm dry place and then harvest the seeds when you are ready to use them.

I would however just that - as germination can be pretty erratic and these seeds can take anything from 1-3 months to germinate - that soaking the seeds for 24 hours prior to planting often gives better results - oh and also that - although Calla Lilies do need to be kept moist - watering them everyday is possibly a little too frequent especially as doing that can often result in rotting the rhizomes - which is why depending on temperatures of course - its generally better to give a thorough watering every four or five days.
 
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I didn't notice any seed heads on my calla lilies. Then again, I cut them because they started to droop over, so maybe next time I will leave one flower and see what happens.

I took a seed head off some lilies outside an empty house a few ears ago and the seeds sprouted on their own. The plants are two years old now so I am hoping to actually see some flowers soon as the bulbs develop.
 
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I didn't notice any seed heads on my calla lilies. Then again, I cut them because they started to droop over, so maybe next time I will leave one flower and see what happen.

Sounds very much to me like you had a seed cone after all and if its any help for next time round - as they start to mature the cones look very similar to an ear of corn.

Oh and you've just reminded me that I forgot to mention - that when Calla Lilies are grown from seed they can take up to three years or more to flower.
 
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Sounds very much to me like you had a seed cone after all and if its any help for next time round - as they start to mature the cones look very similar to an ear of corn.

Oh and you've just reminded me that I forgot to mention - that when Calla Lilies are grown from seed they can take up to three years or more to flower.

As I mentioned above, the flowers never had time to go to seed. They are a beautiful purple color and they get darker as they age. The stems start drooping over though after a bit, so I started cutting them and putting the flowers in a vase. If they come back next season I will watch for the cone you describe.
 
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I thought calla lilies were bulbs, so I don't know if they multiply like that or if the bulb splits to make a new plant. I know that's how daffodils are. I don't remember seeing any seeds on my calla lilies, but they didn't get much sun the first year and didn't come back the next year, so maybe that is why.
 
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