Photo: Blackstem Plants
Zantedeschia aethiopica 'Crowborough'
The Arum lily is one of the world's most iconic plants, yet it isn't a lily at all.
It's an aroid; a perennial herb native to South Africa, Lesotho and Swaziland. It has been in cultivation since the 1660's and despite its origins it's quite hardy.
Its brilliant white spathe (floral bract) surrounds the central pale yellow spadix (floral spike) which bears tiny flowers. The large, rubbery leaves are attractive, exotic and in warm wet winters can be evergreen.
In the UK the entire plant usually disappears over the winter before pushing up tightly packed cylinders of emergent leaves in spring.
It loves rich soil and moisture growing quite large in bog gardens and shallow water. It will tolerate shade but the plant will be smaller with fewer 'flowers'.
All parts of the plant are toxic so handle with care especially when using as a cut flower. The sap is an irritant and can cause dermatitis.
Arguably the most perfect flower there is. Beautiful.
Rich dark green
White, yellow spadix
Humus rich, moist or wet
Full sun, partial shade
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