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How To Prune A Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)

Ask the Expert:
How to Prune?

I have a large peace lily. Where the white flowers have bloomed, they have died and turned brown, but are still attached to a new, fresh, green, stem. I assume this is for the new flowers to bloom.

Can the brown, dead blooms be cut off to the green stem? Or should they stay on until they fall off?

It really takes away from the beauty of the plant itself to leave these on.

Please advise. Thank you. Janie

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:
Each bloom has it’s own stem, therefore the green stem will not produce a new bloom. So you will need to remove both the bloom and the green stem which will eventually turn brown. To remove the spent bloom, you will follow the bloom stem down to the base of the plant and cut the stem off as close to the base of the plant as possible. This will help make the plant more attractive and stimulate the plant to produce more blooms.

While we are talking about pruning peace lilies, we need to discuss pruning unsightly leaves off. You will follow the same procedure as de-head the blooms. Follow the leave stem to the base of the plant and cut it off. You can also prune the leaves themselves should they get brown tips. To do this make an angled cut below the brown tip. This angled cut should keep the new tip from turning brown.

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The Effects Of Chlorine On Peace Lilies

Ask the Expert: Peace lily sensitive to chlorine
Just learned that when watering peace lily, should let water sit out 24 hours to evaporate the chlorine. Wondering if this is what has been ailing my plant. What are the symptoms of chlorinated water being used?

Thanks for your expertise!! Donna

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:Houseplants and chlorine don’t mix well, but many plants will not show any signs of damage when watered with tap water containing chlorine. Sometimes peace lilies (spathiphyllum) don’t show any signs of damage when exposed to chlorine. When they do, I have found the overall health of the plant seems to decline and the leaves will look brown and burnt.

At home, I water mine with tap and have no problems. In the greenhouse, we have noticed the leaves tend to brown and the new leaves of the peace lilies lack vitality when we water with the public water instead of our well water.

With that said, the more important question to ask is “when did the plant start to decline?” If it was recently and you have always watered it with tap water, you need to rule out all other potential causes. If it was after watering with tap water that recently had a stronger chlorine aroma, then chlorine is the problem.

My recommendation is to fill your watering can and let it sit over night. This way you can determine if chlorine is a problem. If it is a chlorine issue, it should be resolved in a few weeks of watering with the exposed water.

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Peace Lily Blooms Are Green Not White – What’s UP?

Ask the Expert: Re: Peace Lilly
My Peace Lilly’s blossoms are/stay green and never turn white. Wazzzzupppp? Glenn

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:It depends on a few things. First we need to know what constitutes a bloom on a Spathiphyllum (peace lily). What most people call the the bloom is actually called a spathe. This structure is similar in shape to a leaf and surrounds the spadix which support the actual flowers of the plant. The Spathes can range in color from a pure white to a pale whitish green depending on the hybrid.

So to determine what is happening with your plant, I need to know a couple of things. Are the Spathes a pale green or a dark green? Do the spathe’s have any white on them? What color is the spadix?

Factors you can work with to achieve better blooms: humidity, water light and fertilizer. Giving the plant the humidity and proper water will help make the formation of leaves, spathes and flowers stronger. The right fertilizer and light will help with strength the color and structure of the plant. So, follow the care instructions for Peace Lilies. Hopefully this will change future spathes from green to white

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Saving A Peace Lily

Ask the Expert: How do I save my peace lily?


My peace lily’s leaves are soft and limp. Someone told m I overwatered it. I let it dry out, it did not improve. Can this plant be saved or is it too late? Debbie

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:
The plant can be saved.
Check the roots. Make sure they have not rotted and that the container has drain holes that will allows excess water to drain away from the roots.

The soil looks a little dry right now. Moisten the soil and keep it evenly moist but not soggy. You want the soil to hold water, but you should not be able to squeeze water from it. Also create a humid environment around the plant by misting the air around it with lukewarm water every day or every other day. Remove any of the yellow or brown leaves.

Make sure the plant is receiving light. However, the light source should not be beaming directly on to the plant.

Once you get the plant settle with the right conditions it should make a full recovery.

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Help! My Peace Lily Has Caterpillars

Ask The Expert: I have two peace lillies. I had the two of them sitting in my kitchen sink to spray the leaves today. I noticed lots of insects that look like baby caterpilars…brown or black in color. What can I do about them, and could that be why the plant doesn’t seem to be growing? Lisa

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:
You can do one of two things: pick off the caterpillars or spray them with an insecticide. I use the Fertilome Red Spider and Mite spray. It Kills Red Spiders Mites, Two Spotted Spider Mites, Whiteflies, Mealybugs, Aphids, Thrips and Scale Crawlers on house plants and is safe to use on peace lilies and a multitude of other houseplants. It comes in a ready to use (rtu) form, so all you have to do is spray it on the plant. You can pick this product up at any local garden center. If they don’t have the Fertilome brand ask the nursery professional what they use.

As for the stunted growth of your Peace lily (Spathiphyllum clevelandii), you may need to fertilize the plants. You can use a water soluble fertilizer once a month. It is best to use a balanced fertilizer – one in which the N, P, and K all have the same ratio like 10-10-10 or 20-20-20. If you can’t find a balanced fertilizer try one in which the number are as close as possible like 9-8-5.

Make sure you are keeping your peace lily evenly moist and that it has good drainage. Keeping your moisture level correct is a big part of keeping a peace lily healthy.

Here are a few Peace Lily Requirements

Peace Lily Care: Light Requirements

[Read more…]

What To Do When Tips OF Peace Lilies Turn Brown

Ask the Expert: Tips of the Peace Lily plant

What do you do when the tips and the sides of the leaves of the Peace Lily plant start turning brown. I have a huge plant in the office and so far it is doing extremely well but the tips of the leaves are turning brown right at the very point.

Thank you for any help you can send my way. Shell

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:
You can trim the brown tips and sides off the leaves. What is more important is to figure out why the leaves are turning brown in the first place. What and sunlight are the major causes of browning in Spathiphyllum (peace lily) leaves. Make sure the plant is staying evenly moist and that sunlight is not beating directly down on the leaves. I would alos check for any signs of insects. Once you correct the problem the leaves should stop turning brown.

Peace Lily Leaves Are Drying And Turning Brown, Why?



Flower Shop Network’s Plant Expert Reply:

Peace lily (Spathiphyllum) leaves can turn brown: if the water used is highly chlorinated – if intense sunlight bears directly down on the leaves – if the plant has not been kept evely moist.  Only To detyou will be able to determine which of these factors is the culprit.  To remedy the situation:

If chlorinated water is the problem, expose your open container of water to the air for 24 hours before using. Or, water your plant with distilled or bottle water.

If sunlight is the issue, move plant away from the intense sunlight.

If irregualer watering is the cause, check the plant every couple of days and water when soil begins to dry out.

With in a couple of week the plant should begin to produce new growth.

Rotting Roots Can Cause Yellowing Of Peace Lily Leaves

Ask the Expert: What’s wrong with my Peace Lily?
I have a rather large peace lily that I have been keeping on my front porch (no direct sunlight whatsoever) and the bottom leaves are beginning to turn yellow and die off.  What am I doing wrong?  Pat

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:

A peace lily (Spathiphyllum clevelandii) that has been exposed to a soggy condition for an extended period will develop root rot. The first indication that a peace lily has root rot is the yellowing of lower leaves. Theses leaves will eventually fall off.

To see if the roots are rotting, you may need to remove it from the pot.  Peace lilies should be planted in a container that has the ability to drain excess moisture. You may need to repot the peace lily. Once the peace lily is placed in the proper conditions it should recover.

Can You Get Spring Flowers For A Fall Wedding?

Ask the Expert: I need some spring flowers for a fall wedding.
My best friend is getting married Oct 10 2010.  She wants black callas, solid white daffodils, and red sweet peas in her bouquet.  The daffodils is her dads birth month flower and the sweet peas are her grooms sisters birth month flower both who passed away 2 years ago.  So she wants to represent them in her bouquet.  We are trying for real flowers first and foremost so I was wondering is it impossible to get the spring flowers for an Oct wedding in South Carolina? Shanna

Plant Expert Reply:

The answer is maybe. The black callas and the sweet pea should not be a problem. These flowers are available during the fall, but they maybe a little more expensive.  Normally daffodils are only available in the spring. Don’t give up hope. When you meet with your wedding florist discuss the possibility of shipping in these spring flowers in for a fall wedding. Your local florist may have a supplier who can provide these flowers. After all the floral industry is global and what we once thought of as seasonal flowers are now available year round.

If you are a florist needing seasonal availabilities of flowers check out the California Cut Flower Association Seasonal Flowers. You can find flower availability based on the month or months you need the flowers.

This wedding flower question was brought to you by Flower Shop Network

Black, Yellow And Burnt Leaves On A Peace Lily

Ask the Expert: Black, Yellow and burnt leaves
I have a peace lily that sits in front of my window. I keep the blinds of my window open so that the plant can get some light because I have brown curtains and brown sheer panels at my window.  I water my plant when it feels dry and also I give it a mist. Most of my leaves are yellow at the top with a burnt tip.  Some are black on the sides.  Even the newer leaves (smaller ones) look as though they are turning. I also noticed today some of the leaves are getting holes.  I don\’t know if the holes are from the drooping or what.  I love this plant. It\’s from my mother\’s furneral. So please help me to save this plant.  P.s. I use tap water that runs through a filter on my sink. Angie

Plant Expert Reply:

I suspect that the peace lily (Spathiphyllum clevendii) is too close to the window and the intesified light is buring the leaves. Move the plant a little farther from the window.  When you water the plant make sure to saturate the soil completely.  Also, check to see if you have any insects on the plant that might be creating the holes.  Should you have an insect problem, spray the peace lily with a houseplant insecticide.

Once you move the plant away from the direct light from the window, the plant should make a full recovery. Good Luck and keep me posted.

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