Straight-stemmed with glossy green leaves, the Calla Lily”s most characteristic trait is the yellow, finger-like spadix that emerges from the base of the flower”s funnel-shaped spathe.
Scientific name in honor of Francesco Zantedeschia who wrote about Italian plants around 1825. This particular species was discovered in South Africa by Mr. Rehmann, hence the specific epithet name of “rehmannii”.
Several arum family members (including taro) are grown in tropical regions for their edible tubers, representing starch staples for large populations. Many other species are grown for their beautiful foliage.
Many colored cultivars being developed in New Zealand; crosses of Z. elliotiana, Z. rehmannii and Z. albomaculata.
Sometimes the foliage of Z. aethiopica is used in the floral industry as a cut green. If used as a green, do not use flower food as leaf yellowing is promoted but do try treating with gibberellin (3 or 4+7) either as a spray or dip as the green leaf color can be maintained. It is unknown if these same results would be obtained by Z. rehmannii and other species but the gibberellin treatment is worth trying.
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