What’s the Difference Between a Peace Lily and a Calla Lily? (UNVEILED)

What’s the Difference Between a Peace Lily and a Calla Lily? (UNVEILED)

Discover the enchanting world of lilies as we unravel the intriguing disparities between the Peace Lily and the Calla Lily.

From origins to symbolism, we’ll explore what makes these blooms so captivating and culturally meaningful.

Join me on this floral adventure!


Here’s a Quick TLDR

The main difference between a peace lily and a calla lily lies in their appearance and care requirements.

Peace lilies have dark green leaves and white flowers, while calla lilies come in a variety of colors, including white, pink, and yellow.

Peace lilies are known for their air-purifying properties and are relatively low maintenance, thriving in low light conditions.

On the other hand, calla lilies prefer more sunlight and need regular watering to bloom beautifully.

The Origins of Peace Lily and Calla Lily

When comparing the Peace Lily and the Calla Lily, understanding their origins can provide valuable insight into their unique characteristics and care requirements.

Let’s delve into the origins of these two popular lily varieties.

Peace Lily:

The Peace Lily, also known as Spathiphyllum, is native to the tropical regions of the Americas, specifically the rainforests of Central and South America.

Discovered by botanist Gustav Wallis, this elegant plant was named for its white bracts, which symbolize peace and purity.

  • The Peace Lily has become a symbol of tranquility and harmony, making it a popular choice for indoor plants.
  • Its ability to thrive in low light conditions and its air-purifying qualities have contributed to its widespread popularity in homes and offices worldwide.

Calla Lily:

The Calla Lily, scientifically known as Zantedeschia, has its origins in Southern Africa, particularly in countries like South Africa, Lesotho, and Swaziland.

Its name is derived from the Greek word “calla,” which means beautiful.

  • Cultivated for centuries, the Calla Lily is prized for its unique trumpet-shaped flowers and vibrant colors, ranging from white and yellow to pink and purple.
  • While commonly seen in floral arrangements and wedding bouquets, the Calla Lily also thrives as a potted plant or in garden beds.

Key Differences:

  1. Origin: The Peace Lily originates from the Americas, while the Calla Lily hails from Southern Africa.
  2. Meaning: The Peace Lily symbolizes peace and purity, whereas the Calla Lily is associated with beauty and elegance.
  3. Flower Shape: Peace Lilies feature white spathes surrounding a central spadix, while Calla Lilies have a distinctive trumpet-like shape.
  4. Color Variations: Calla Lilies display a wider range of colors compared to the predominantly white Peace Lily.

As we explore the differences between these two lily varieties, understanding their origins lays the foundation for appreciating their unique beauty and characteristics.

Stay tuned for the next section where we discuss their care requirements and growing conditions.

Contrasting Physical Characteristics

When it comes to distinguishing between a peace lily and a calla lily, one of the key aspects to consider is their physical characteristics.

Let’s dive into the specific differences in appearance that set these two types of lilies apart.

Peace Lily:

The peace lily, scientifically known as Spathiphyllum, is a popular choice for indoor plants due to its elegant and graceful look.

Here are some of the key physical characteristics of the peace lily:

  1. Leaves: The leaves of a peace lily are large, broad, and dark green in color. They have a glossy texture, giving the plant a lush and vibrant appearance.

  2. Flowers: Peace lilies produce white flowers that are hooded in shape, resembling a small cup. These flowers are often surrounded by a white spathe, which is a leaf-like bract that covers the spadix (the spike of small flowers).

  3. Size: Typically, a peace lily can grow to be around 1 to 6 feet tall, depending on the specific variety and growing conditions.

  4. Blooming: Peace lilies are known for their long-lasting blooms, with flowers that can persist for weeks or even months under the right care conditions.

Calla Lily:

On the other hand, the calla lily, scientifically known as Zantedeschia, boasts its own unique set of physical characteristics that differentiate it from the peace lily:

  1. Leaves: Calla lily leaves are more slender and arrow-shaped compared to the broader leaves of the peace lily. They are typically a lighter shade of green and have a smooth texture.

  2. Flowers: Calla lilies are prized for their distinct trumpet-shaped flowers that come in a variety of colors, including white, pink, yellow, and purple. These flowers have a single petal that curls into an elegant shape.

  3. Size: Calla lilies are generally smaller in size compared to peace lilies, with most varieties reaching a height of 1 to 3 feet.

  4. Blooming: While calla lilies also produce long-lasting blooms, their flowering period is usually shorter compared to peace lilies, with flowers lasting for a few weeks.

In summary, the peace lily and calla lily can be differentiated based on their leaf shape, flower structure, size, and blooming characteristics.

Understanding these contrasting physical features can help plant enthusiasts identify and appreciate the unique traits of each type of lily in their botanical collection.

Care and Maintenance Requirements

When it comes to caring for plants, understanding their specific needs is key to keeping them healthy and thriving.

Let’s dive into the care and maintenance requirements of peace lilies and calla lilies to help you provide the best environment for these beautiful plants.


Both peace lilies and calla lilies require consistent watering to keep their soil moist but not waterlogged.

Peace lilies prefer to dry out slightly between watering sessions, while calla lilies thrive in consistently moist soil.

Overwatering can lead to root rot, so it’s essential to find the right balance for each type of plant.

Peace Lily Tip: Water your peace lily when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch, typically every 1-2 weeks.

Calla Lily Tip: Keep the soil of your calla lily consistently moist but not waterlogged, ensuring proper drainage to prevent water accumulation.


Light is another crucial factor for the growth and development of both peace lilies and calla lilies.

While these plants thrive in bright, indirect light, their requirements differ slightly.

Peace Lily Fact: Peace lilies prefer moderate to low light conditions and can even tolerate fluorescent light.

Avoid placing them in direct sunlight to prevent leaf burn.

Calla Lily Fact: Calla lilies thrive in bright, indirect light.

However, they can also grow well in partial shade, making them versatile options for indoor and outdoor settings.

Temperature and Humidity

Maintaining the right temperature and humidity levels is essential for the overall health of peace lilies and calla lilies.

Peace Lily Stat: Peace lilies thrive in average room temperatures ranging from 65-80°F (18-27°C) and prefer higher humidity levels.

Mist the leaves occasionally to mimic their natural humid environment.

Calla Lily Stat: Calla lilies prefer temperatures between 60-75°F (15-24°C) during the day and slightly cooler temperatures at night.

They also require moderate humidity levels to thrive.


Proper fertilization can help promote healthy growth and vibrant blooms in both peace lilies and calla lilies.

Peace Lily Tip: Feed your peace lily with a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer once a month during the growing season (spring and summer) to support continuous flowering.

Calla Lily Tip: Fertilize your calla lily with a high-phosphorus fertilizer every 2-4 weeks during the growing season to encourage blooming and healthy foliage.

By understanding and meeting the care and maintenance requirements of peace lilies and calla lilies, you can enjoy the beauty of these plants in your home or garden.

Remember to tailor your care routine to the specific needs of each plant to ensure optimal growth and longevity.

Symbolic Meanings and Cultural Significance

When it comes to the symbolic meanings and cultural significance of Peace Lilies and Calla Lilies, these elegant flowers hold a special place in various cultures and traditions worldwide.

Peace Lily Symbolism


Peace and Harmony:
The Peace Lily, also known as Spathiphyllum, symbolizes peace, tranquility, and harmony.

Its pure white flowers are often associated with purity of thought and intention.


Healing and Hope:
In many cultures, the Peace Lily represents healing and hope.

It is often gifted to convey sympathies and well-wishes during difficult times.


Air Purification:
Apart from its symbolic meanings, the Peace Lily is also known for its air-purifying properties.

According to a NASA Clean Air Study, Peace Lilies can help remove toxins like formaldehyde and benzene from indoor spaces.

Calla Lily Symbolism


Beauty and Elegance:
Calla Lilies, scientifically known as Zantedeschia, are renowned for their striking beauty and elegant appearance.

They symbolize sophistication, admiration, and femininity.


Transformation and Renewal:
The trumpet-shaped blooms of Calla Lilies often represent transformation and renewal.

They are commonly associated with new beginnings and positive changes in life.


Faith and Purity:
In some cultures, Calla Lilies symbolize faith, purity, and rebirth.

They are often used in religious ceremonies and weddings to signify the purity of emotions and intentions.

Cultural Significance


Weddings and Special Events:
Both Peace Lilies and Calla Lilies are popular choices for weddings and special events.

While Peace Lilies are often chosen for their symbolism of peace and harmony, Calla Lilies are preferred for their elegant and sophisticated appearance.


Funerals and Memorials:
Peace Lilies are frequently used in funeral arrangements due to their symbolism of healing and hope.

Calla Lilies, on the other hand, may symbolize the purity and beauty of the departed soul, making them a common choice for memorials.


Historical References:
Throughout history, both Peace Lilies and Calla Lilies have appeared in art, literature, and cultural traditions.

For example, Georgia O’Keeffe, a renowned American artist, famously painted Calla Lilies as a representation of beauty and strength.

while Peace Lilies symbolize peace, healing, and air purification, Calla Lilies represent beauty, elegance, and transformation.

Understanding the symbolic meanings and cultural significance of these exquisite flowers adds a deeper layer of appreciation for their inherent beauty and grace.

Final Thoughts

By unraveling the intricate differences between the elegant Peace Lily and the majestic Calla Lily, you now possess a deeper insight into these enchanting floral beauties.

From their origins to their care needs and symbolic meanings, you’ve unlocked the secrets that set these lilies apart.

Armed with this newfound knowledge, why not add a touch of botanical charm to your space with the perfect lily choice?

Whether it’s the serene aura of the Peace Lily or the bold statement of the Calla Lily, let nature’s beauty flourish in your surroundings.

Embrace the allure of lilies and let your floral choices bloom with purpose and meaning.

Happy gardening!

James Twitty

James is a software developer by trade, but his true passion lies in plants. He loves to be outside in nature and is always eager to learn more about the different species of plants he finds. He often experiments with growing and propagating different types of plants and herbs, and is always excited to share his knowledge with others.

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