Lilies not turning white

PhytoRoApril 2, 2013

I have a very nice Lily with tons of "flowers" but they are all green. Itôs on a side of a west-looking window but does not receive direct light. Could this be the reason? If not, what am I doing wrong? This is the first time I have a Lily looking so healthy and with so many flowers, but only one is white. Any ideas?

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Hi Ro,

Actually, green PL flowers are not unusual and definately not anything to worry over.

Normally, older /mature Spaths/PL produce light green blooms.

Would you happen to know your plants age?

Sounds like you're doing a great job with your plants.

Have a picture? Toni

    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 11:44AM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

A spathe is actually a modified leaf or bract. In white spathes, the green chloroplasts are masked, but sometimes become more prevalent and move the bract toward a green color when receiving insufficient light. The spike in the middle of the modified leaf is actually the bloom.

To draw a parallel, what almost everyone calls the flower or bloom on a poinsettia are also modified leaves (bracts), the color of which are greatly affected by photo-period and to some degree, photo-intensity. The poinsettia's blooms, like the spathe's are also rather insignificant/inconspicuous and located in the middle of the bracts.


    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 4:33PM
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auron22(6b OH)

I have also heard fertilizing can cause green flowers.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 5:50PM
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thank you all for your responses! I have no idea of the age of the plant. My husband got it for me in the supermarket. I repotted it about a month ago, but it already had green spathes (thanks Al, for the info!). I do not use fertilizers other than whatever is on the potting soil that I buy (Scottôs maybe?). I changed it to another window that gets more light.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 8:55PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

FYI - supplemental nutrition is a very necessary part of taking care of containerized plants - so much so that it works best if the grower shoulders all the responsibility for making sure the plant gets all the nutrients a plant normally takes from the soil (and in a favorable ratio to each other). It sounds mysterious and complicated, but it's as easy as choosing the right fertilizer. Choosing a soil combination and fertilizer that really compliment each other would probably represent the largest step forward a container grower can take at any one time. I hope I've piqued your curiosity. ;-)


    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 10:53PM
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Were those green "flowers" on your PL when your Hubby brought it home? If so, as they age, the white "flowers" will turn green as they begin the process of dying. I can't say how long they last once opened, but that's another reason for green "flowers."

On a different note, to add to Al's comment about bracts and flowers, the same holds true for Euphorbia Milli, "Crown of Thorns." Although I guess that's alittle redundant on my part, as Poinsettias and "Crown of Thorns" come from the same genus. ;) But a fun fact for those who also like succulents.


    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 10:56PM
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thank you all for the info! Iôm sorry it took me a while to respond. I am most interested in the fertilization aspect. Could you please post a link where itôs explained?
Also, if these green brackets are older/dying, should I trim them to stimulate growth of new (white) ones?

thank you very much!

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 2:48PM
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