The Q&A Archives: Calla Lilly and the bulb not sprouting and becomes mush

Question: I have been growing calla lillies in pots. I wait until Mother's day or after to plant them. It seems that after I have planted them it rains a lot and soaks the pots. Some of the bulbs sprout and others don't. I later dig up the unsprouted bulbs and find them mushy. This year the rain soaked them again. Now when I know rain is in the forecast I put them in the garage and set them out in better weather. Is too much water at first causing this or is it something else, and what can I do?

Answer: I think you've diagnosed the problem - soggy soil causes bulbs to rot. Since you're planting in containers, are you using potting soil or garden soil? Potting soil will drain fastest, which will help keep the bulbs healthier. If you could place the pots somewhere in the garden that is protected from rainfall it would save you from having to cart them to the garage each time it rains. Under a garden bench, perhaps, or next to the foundation of your home where the eaves will divert the rain, or on a picnic table under an umbrella? I'll bet you'll come up with a better solution than having to move them each time it rains!

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