The peace lily is an ornamental plant generally sold for the home interior. It produces a white spathe or flower, which is forced by commercial growers to make it more appealing at market. Once the spathe is gone, you are left with lovely glossy green leaves, but what if you want that flower back? Often, a peace lily won't flower no matter how you care for it. This can be frustrating but there is a very good reason for this condition.
Peace Lily Facts
Peace lilies are members of the same family as philodendrons, both of which are Aroids. They are very popular tropical houseplants. Peace lily's flower is especially appealing set amongst the dark green leaves. It lasts for at least a month but eventually fades and dies. A peace lily never flowers until it is mature. Professional growers know how to get a peace lily plant to bloom on command. They use a natural plant hormone to stimulate the plant into production. It is not uncommon to find a peace lily not blooming, even when it is a healthy plant. They are native to the tropical Americas and found in dense forests where dappled sun is the chief source of light. They need humus rich soil and moderate moisture. The optimum growing conditions are between 65 and 86 degrees F. (18-30 C.). Warmer conditions encourage blooming. The white spathe is actually not the flower but a modified leaf that encloses the actual flowers, which are tiny and insignificant. A peace lily won't flower unless it is moist and warm enough with gentle lighting.
When Do Peace Lilies Flower?
Peace lilies are sold with a flower or spathe. It is an attractive feature, rising up creamy white from the center of the arching sword-like foliage. They are forced to bloom with gibberellic acid, a natural plant hormone that stimulates cell division and elongation. The plants used to be raised to maturity and natural flowering before the appearance of gibberellic acid. The process could take up to a year before there are sellable plants. Your plant is usually not mature when it comes from a commercial grower today. That means it is not old enough to flower naturally. Additionally, site conditions need to be ideal and the plant needs to be fertilized. When do peace lilies flower? They naturally flower in spring or early summer.
How to Get a Peace Lily Plant to Bloom
Your best chance if your peace lily never flowers is to check that you are giving it the correct cultivation. It needs well-draining potting soil, rich in organic matter. Water the plant two or three times per week. It is best to use distilled water, as these plants can be sensitive to some minerals and chemicals found in tap water. Try feeding your plant a balanced houseplant fertilizer every two to three months. Keep the plant in a low light situation out of direct sunlight, but bright enough you could read a book. Gradually move the plant to brighter light if it is in a very dark room. This could spur a non-blooming peace lily to flower just by virtue of more candles of light.
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Bonnie Grant is a professional landscaper with a Certification in Urban Gardening. She has been gardening and writing for 15 years. A former professional chef, she has a passion for edible landscaping.
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