Calla Lilies VS Lilies: How to Tell the Difference

| Wendy Han

Lilies are very popular flowers that come in many different colours and shapes. There are two types of lilies: calla lilies which have trumpet-shaped flowers, and true lilies which have funnel-shaped flowers. They are both flowers, but they come from different families of plants. With the same name, it can be hard to differentiate between these two flowers. However, there are some subtle differences between the lilies and calla lilies:

Appearance of Calla Lilies and Lilies

As mentioned, although calla lilies are similar to regular lilies, they belong to a different plant family. Calla lilies are cultivars of an Araceae (arum) plant, while true lilies are polyploid members of the Liliaceae (lily) family, and they share only some visible characteristics. This helps explain why some calla lilies grow from thick stalks with large green leaves that look almost identical to those found on the actual lily flower.

The appearance of calla lilies and lilies can be challenging to distinguish from one another, but there are a few subtle differences that set them apart. For example, calla lilies have thick green stalks with broad leaves, and they rise in a cluster from underground stems. Lilies, meanwhile, have a thin branch that emerges from the ground before it forms large flowers atop their slender stalk. The leaves also tend to be a bit more textured with a distinct veining and are typically thinner. Moreover, lily flowers generally have three petals and three sepals that look almost identical to one another.

Meanings in Terms of Colours

In addition, calla lilies are often available in a range of colours, including white, purple, pink, and yellow. Their leaves are sometimes spotted, with designer plants even having distinct speckles or stripes along their veins. They also tend to be a bit larger than lilies. White, pink, purple, yellow, orange, and red calla lilies can mean different things. White calla lilies symbolise purity, innocence and hope whilst pink ones represent love, gratitude, and admiration - they are also a tribute flower for mothers. Purple calla lilies symbolise dignity and honour, whilst yellow ones represent resilience, cheerfulness, and youth. Orange calla lilies are intended to convey royalty whilst red ones symbolise the passion and love between couples.

On the other hand, white lilies represent understanding, compassion, grace, and purity; lilies in orange symbolise prosperity; yellow lilies represent love and joy whilst yellow-orange ones indicate gratitude.

Occasions to Present Calla Lilies and Lilies

For occasions to present calla lilies and lilies, you can show either one as a gift for someone special in your life. For example, red calla lilies symbolise deep love and affection, and they are appropriate for occasions such as anniversaries, birthdays, and Valentine's Day.

In terms of weddings, calla lilies symbolise true love, integrity, grace, and spirit. For example, a bouquet of white calla lilies can be an appropriate option for rehearsal dinners and bridal shower gifts. Fresh calla lilies and lily flowers can be an exquisite bouquet not only for wedding ceremonies but also for any special occasion.

On top of that, there are also many ways in which you can use both lilies and calla lilies in home decorating. For example, you can arrange by placing a few calla lily stalks or even some single flower stems inside a glass vase and adding some water. 

Ready to buy a bouquet for your loved one? Ordering from a reliable Singapore florist such as Floristique will ensure that your special someone gets their gift on time. With a wide selection of lilies, calla lilies and many more floral options, you'll be able to get exactly what your recipient wants and it will arrive fresh! 

Need some help choosing your flowers? Get in touch with the Floristique team today.

Scroll To Top