Calla or arum lilies have long since been associated with treasured and memorable events, and it’s therefore no surprise that the word “calla” literally translates to mean “beautiful. As a native South African flower, the calla lily truly flourishes in this side of the hemisphere and is available at most times of the year – often harvested in greenhouses during off-seasons.

The greatest benefit of the calla lily is that it can stay fresh for several days which makes it the ideal no-fuss-or-worry flower for a bride that’s planning her own wedding from scratch. Symbolically the white calla is associated with purity, elegance and the union of hearts. Due to its longevity, the flower is also associated with timelessness and rebirth, and many believe that the flower is Mother Nature’s gift to her favourite creatures: The humans.

According to ancient Greek and Roman mythology, this cone-like flower is representative of the goddess of flowers, Hera. As the story goes, Zeus brought his son, Hercules, to drink from her while she was sleeping. However, when Hera awoke, she pulled Hercules – who wasn’t her son – from her bosom and the milk splashed across the universe – where the drops hit the earth, the beautiful calla lily sprung forth.

While white arum lilies are generally the lily of choice for the wedding day, you’re certainly spoiled for choice when it comes to this classic flower as it’s available in everything from burgundy and deep purple to pink, yellow and orange. Be wary of including calla lilies in your bridal bouquet however as the freshly cut stems could leak sap onto your wedding gown and stain it – simply dip the stem in hot wax to keep this from occurring.

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