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Making Peace Lilies Bloom

Ask The Expert: I read your info on the peace lily.  I have one that is 3 years old.  It was in bloom when I received it, but it hasn’t blossomed since then.  It has nice green leaves and looks very healthy.  What can I do to make it blossom?  Thank you.  Barbara

Plant Expert Reply:

Making Peace lilies bloom is a million dollar question. Naturally peace lilies bloom in the spring and early summer initiated by the short day/long night photoperiod of December and January.  This means that one of the factors for peace lily blooms is light.  In other words, it needs seasonal change to induce blooming.  In this case, you could create this artificially by shorten the amount of light the plant receives.  However, light is not the only factor.  Temperature can also contribute to blooming.  A few weeks kept at a slightly lower temperature and in conjunction with the photoperiod can produce blooms.

Another monkey wrench is the development of peace lilies over the course of time. Over the years growers have produced different peace lily cultivars to achieve different goals.  As a result, some peace lily cultivars bloom more and some rarely.  So your lack of blooming could be the type of peace lily you have and not necessarily an environmental issue.

How the professional peace lily growers do it

The growers take a chemical approach to peace lily bloom production.  They stimulate blooming by applying Gibberellic acid (GA3 ) – a naturally occuring plant hormone.  This hormone initiates the peace to produce blooms.

I don’t think GA3 is available to consumers, so your best option is to try the light and the temperature variations.

Good Luck and keep me posted.

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