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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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  1. Mose Torgrimson says:

    I really got into this article. I found it very interesting and loaded with unique points of interest. I like to read material that makes me wonder. Thank you for writing this great content.

  2. Deborah Wolfe says:

    We recently just split off a mother plant and we cannot tell if in the process we have traumatized it, overwatered it, or underwatered it. I’ve read a ton of articles but can’t figure it out. Is there a way to talk to someone personally to figure this out?

  3. Deborah,

    Our plant expert is currently out of the office, but you can send a picture to jadams@flowershopnetwork.com and we will get back with you as soon as possible. Thanks.

  4. Alberta says:

    My daughter have just recently given me a peace lily. This website has given me a lot of information that i needed to care for MY plant. Thank you all.

  5. Christine Castillo says:

    My peace lily is old (10 yrs at least) with huge leaves but very spread out. It blooms regularly and is very healthy. Should I prune it to get it to grow new leaves closer together or not mess with it?
    Chris Castillo

  6. Jamie Woods says:

    Hi Chris,
    If your plant is healthy and still blooming regularly, I would leave it alone and let it keep growing.

  7. I have 6 spathiphyllum plants in the church and I water them . The leaves are still green ,they still look healthy. How often should I water it and can you clean the leaves with milk is there a certain time when the flowers grow on the plants I’m really trying to take care of of a plants in the church I need your help I need step by step please
    thank you

  8. Jamie Woods says:

    Hi Veella,
    This link will take you to our Peace Lily Plant Care Page. It has all the info you need for taking care of your peace lilies! https://www.flowershopnetwork.com/blog/flower-plant-care/plant-care/peace-lily-plant-care/

  9. Rachele M. says:

    I have read your article about caring for peace lilies but did not see anything noted about how often they bloom. I have had my plant for almost 1 year and in that time, it has only had 2 flowers on it. It is watered regularly and has ample sun and appears to be healthy. Is it possible to get a plant that just doesn’t bloom? Or am I doing something wrong?

  10. Jamie Woods says:

    Hi Rachele,
    Often times Peace Lilies are forced to bloom at the growers. This can throw off their natural blooming schedule. They also require periods of rest between blooms. To encourage your peace lily to bloom, remove the spent blooms by cutting it at the base of the stalk. Fertilizing your Peace Lily with a balanced houseplant fertilizer every few months will also help encourage it bloom. If your Peace Lily is healthy and the environmental conditions are right, it will be bloom again. Just give it a little time.

  11. Wendy Bates says:

    Hi Jamie,
    My peace lily lives in a pot outside my front door, it has been loving life there, looking healthy and growing well. Overnight a family of large green (4cm long) caterpillars moved in and have almost completely eaten every leaf. My question is, should i cut the remaining bits of stem off and hope the plant comes back?


  12. Eileen Viola says:

    My husband cut leaves off my peace Lilly to make it smaller (this plant was giving to me 9 years ago when my daughter died and means alot to me) did he damage the plant and what can i do? It looks horrible now!

  13. Sheryl Hanger says:

    I have a Peace lily that has been severely pruned back… it’s mostly brown straw like pieces with some green growing out of the tops of these brown stalks. ls there anything that I can do to save this plant. it it is special to my co worker as her former boss gave it to her.

  14. YEs and it should recover.

  15. Jamie Woods says:

    Hey Wendy,
    Peace lilies are pretty resilient, so hopefully, your plant has bounced back. The biggest thing will be to remove and keep the caterpillars away.

  16. Jamie Woods says:

    As long as he did not trim it back too much, it should be fine. I would give it some time to grow before trying to prune it any more.

  17. Jamie Woods says:

    It sounds like there is new growth on the plant. I would continue to care for it and give it some time to grow back.

  18. Sue Williams says:

    I had to cut my peace lily back after a hip replacement and rehab. i came home and it was in the floor. i watered it but the leaves couldnt pick themselves up. I cut it back, but the new leaves cant seem to come out of the old stems properly, and are having trouble opening. should i cut it back farther and see if that helps? ty

  19. Jamie Woods says:

    Sue, I would give the new growth a little more time to come in. If you still feel that the new growth is having trouble, trim back more of the old growth. Sometimes it can take a peace lily a while to recover from shock and trauma, which is what caused the old growth to droop in the first place. It may still recover with time.

  20. Sue Williams says:

    Thank you, that is what I had decided to do. glad I was on the right track.

  21. Wanetta Smiley says:

    My lily has a beautiful double blossom, is this unusual?

  22. Miroslava Casiano says:

    It is not common for this to happen. A lot of things can cause this but your peace lily should be fine :)

  23. I have a Variegated peace lily. I got it when my sister died almost 2 years ago. It was a medium to large size and very full with blooms when I got it. Now it only has 7 leaves at most and hasn’t grown new ones in a while. Hasn’t flowered since 2 months after I got it. I was wondering if it will grow new leaves and what I need to do to make that happen. I just really can’t lose this plant.

  24. Aynsley Broom says:

    Hi Amanda,
    Here is a great blog about how to care for a peace lily: https://www.flowershopnetwork.com/blog/care-peace-lily-funeral/

  25. Vanessa Coffey says:

    Hi my PeaceLily has brown flowers should I trim it off the whole plant looks well and nice and green. Unsure about the flowers.

  26. Hi Vanessa! If the blooms originally are green and then turn brown, this is a natural process and the brown blooms should be removed. If they aren’t originally green, try misting your peace lily every three to four days and give it more indirect, bright light. You can find more peace lily care tips here. Hope this helps!

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