The peace lily plant has a tropical origin as it is found on the forest floor in the rain forests of tropical America. The leaves of the peace lily are a deep shiny green and can be up to a foot in length. The plant can be up to four feet tall.
The origin of being found on the floor of rain forests helps explain why the peace lily can cope with poor lighting found indoors. Do not place your lily in direct sun. Direct sunlight can damage the Peace Lily’s foliage. If the leaves begin to yellow, it may mean it is receiving too much sunlight. Try to put your lily 5 to 8 feet from a window. Although Peace Lilies are ideal for dark corners, they will grow well in brighter light as long as they aren’t subjected to hot direct sun.
The main care requirement for your Peace Lily is water. Many recommend watering the plant once weekly. Some other gardening pros suggest that you can best check water supply by observing if the soil is moist. The soil ought to continually feel moist, but the peace lily should not sit in a tray of water. This houseplant will let you know when it needs water. The leaves will begin to droop. Allowing the foliage to droop slightly in-between watering has turned out to be successful for some. However, do not let it drop significantly. Once the plant is watered the foliage will spring back up. If you allowed it to dry out too much, some of the lower leaves may yellow and need to be removed.
This plant also loves higher humidity levels, so providing it with a nice misting a couple of times a week will help the plant remain beautifully healthy.
When the plant is mature enough the first flowers appear. The flowers have showy white fan-like blooms consisting of large white spathe with a white or pale yellow spadix. If the peace lily refuses to bloom, it may be rootbound, exposed to drafts, or maybe in too much light. Trimming excessive foliage can also spur a blooming cycle. Also, fertilizing the plant every 2-3 months can help ensure blooming.
One interesting additional positive characteristic of the peace lily is its ability to clean the air. It has been found to be able to remove chemicals like formaldehyde and carbon monoxide from the air. NASA conducted a study on houseplants and named the peace lily among the top ten plants for removing indoor chemicals and keeping the air “greener.”
One negative consideration is that it is one of many poisonous houseplants. If ingested by children it can cause mouth ulcerations, and vomiting. A small amount of leaves chewed by a dog or cat is even more dangerous and potentially lethal. If you suspect a child or animal has eaten peace lily, you should contact poison control immediately.
Thriving in lower lighted areas make this plant work almost anywhere and is one of the reasons The Peace Lily Plant is one of the most popular houseplants.
Spathiphyllum, Peace Lilies
It could be due to a few things. Water the plant only when the top inch or so of soil is dry. Add water just until it starts to drain out of the bottom of the pot. Do not let the plant sit in the drained water longer than an hour or two. I use distilled water on my house plants to help prevent brown leaf tips. These plants should not have direct sunlight, a place near a window where it gets indirect light, it doesn’t even necessarily have to be bright. Make sure the pot it is in is no larger than a couple of inches bigger around than the root ball of the plant. Here is some additional info:
There are very few plants that really do well in a low light situation and this is the best of them. Spathiphyllum is commonly used in homes, offices, and shopping malls because they are so easy to grow and will adapt to a wide variety of conditions. They are also one of the few low-light plants to bloom reliably. Spathiphyllum is also called peace lilies, named for the creamy white spathes that look very much like a calla lily. Botanically, a spathe is a bract (modified leaf) enclosing a flower cluster or spadix (fleshy spike). The elegant white spathes on peace lilies are referred to as their flowers.
Spathiphyllum are clump-growing tropical plants with many stems emerging from the soil. The different varieties may vary in the size of the leaves and the overall size of the plant. A new compact version has become very popular in the past few years. Their foliage is always glossy, green, long, and narrow. Different varieties now offer darker greens or narrower leaves and some also bloom more than others.
To select a good, healthy spathiphyllum, look for a plant that fills out the pot. It should have new foliage emerging within the mature leaves. If you are buying the plant for the blooms, be sure to select a specimen that has at least one flower open because they do vary greatly in size and color.
Tips for Growing Healthy Spathiphyllum (Peace Lilies)
What are the light requirements for Spathiphyllum?
They are low light tolerant plants. If you can comfortably sit and read in the spot, the plant will do all right. Winter sun is fine, but avoid direct afternoon sun in the summertime.
How much water do they need?
Keep the soil evenly moist all year round. Do not allow it to stand with water in the saucer for more than an hour or two.
Do they have any special temperature requirements?
They are well suited to average indoor temperatures. If they are kept where it is warmer, be sure to keep the soil moist and raise the humidity around the plant.
Do peace lilies need much humidity?
They need high humidity and should be misted daily or kept near a humidifier or on a humidity tray.
How much fertilizer do they require?
During the spring and summer, when the plant is most actively growing, feed them every two weeks with a liquid or water-soluble fertilizer such as AeroGarden Liquide Nutrients. In fall and winter, cut back to a half-strength solution once a month.
What Type of Soil do they prefer?
Use a peat-based potting soil such as Bachman’s Exceloam.
When should I Repot my Peace Lily?
Repot them each spring. They like to be a bit crowded in the pot and require excellent drainage.
Will they Need Any Grooming?
Give them an occasional shower to remove any accumulated dust from the foliage. Also, as flowers fade, clip off the stem as low as you can reach.
How are they propagated?
Almost all Spathiphyllums are now propagated through a laboratory procedure called tissue culture. They can also be divided.
Troubleshooting Problems with Spathiphyllums (Peace Lilies)
Why won’t my spathiphyllum bloom?
The most common reason a peace lily doesn’t bloom is a combination of too little light and too little humidity. Sometimes very mature plants don’t bloom well. Try increasing light, humidity, fertilizer, and dividing if it is severely root-bound.
What caused spots on the Blooms?
Sprays, especially leaf shine or insecticides, will spot the blooms.
If the whole plant looks wilted, what is the problem?
Too much or too little water will cause wilting. So will temperatures that are too cool.
What makes the leaves look dull?
When a path is kept too cool (below 60º), it tends to get a dull look to the foliage. Extended periods of too much cold will lead to problems with stem rot.
What causes brown tips or edges on leaves?
Most brown tips are caused either by low humidity or a build-up of salt in the soil from fertilizers and alkaline tap water.
Why do some stems seem too weak?
This can be caused by drought or high temperatures. Spath’s can stand higher temperatures if they are kept moist and the humidity is high.
If some of the leaves are yellow, what is the cause?
Yellowing, especially on inner leaves, usually indicates that the plant is being kept too wet. Too much sun might also result in a few yellow leaves, but they will usually be outer leaves.
Are there insect problems with spathiphyllum?
Watch for the occasional outbreak of aphids on the young succulent growth. If the humidity is low and the temps are high, they may have problems with spider mites too.
Are they prone to any disease problems?
Except for root or stem rot from too much water, spathiphyllum rarely has a disease problem.