I Love the Peace Lily aka Spathiphyllum

Feb 12, 2021 | Love This!

 Name: Peace Lily aka Spathiphyllum species and varieties  

Type of Plant: This is a tropical, broad leaf evergreen that is a very commonly sold houseplant.

Why I Love/Hate this plant: I love the peace lily because it has dark, shiny green leaves and will survive in many areas of an average house. I like that there are varieties that grow large and lush, and others that stay small and perky. This is a forgiving plant that grows on the forest floor near streams, and this tells us that it can stand being moist and that it doesn’t need any direct sun.

The name “peace lily” comes from the fact that the flower, which is made of a white spathe and a spike-like spadix, looks like the white flag that is an international symbol of surrender.

A Word to the Wise: If you want a peace lily to flower, you’ll need to put the plant where it’s in very bright light or a place that gets two or so hours of direct sun.

Peace lilies don’t need much fertilizer. I normally give mine a half cup of earthworm castings twice a year and a mild application of a synthetic fertilizer once a year.

Note that peace lilies are toxic to cats and dogs, so if your pet is prone to munching on your indoor plants you might want to avoid this one.

The flower has given this plant its common name, as it looks like a white flag of peace, flown in times of battle as a symbol that the fighting should stop.

This large peace lily was once a small plant in a dish garden that someone gave my mother-in-law twenty years ago. After she died I took the struggling plant out of the shallow basket where it was competing for space with some ivy and assorted other specimens, and I planted it in its own pot. Within a couple of years it had quadrupled in size, and is now a three foot tall and wide plant in the corner of my front room.

When the peace lily is fresh from the greenhouse it is usually flowering. If you want to have it flower in your home, a couple of hours of direct sun in the morning is helpful.

 

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