Araceae Juss.

Calla L.

This genus is accepted, and its native range is Temp. & Subarctic Northern Hemisphere.


CATE Araceae, 17 Dec 2011.

Creeping helophyte; stem green, rooting at nodes; petiole sheath with long apical ligule; leaf blade cordate; fine venation parallel-pinnate; spathe expanded, elliptic to ovate-lanceolate; flowers bisexual, perigone absent.
General Description
Laticifers present, simple, articulated. HABIT : seasonally dormant herb with repent or submersed, green, rhizomatous stem, rooting at nodes. LEAVES : distichous. PETIOLE : sheath long, with long, free, ligulate apex. BLADE : cordate to broadly cordate, rounded, cuspidate-apiculate; primary lateral veins not differentiated, higher order venation parallel-pinnate. INFLORESCENCE : solitary. PEDUNCLE : erect, as long or longer than petiole. SPATHE : fully expanded, elliptic- or ovate-lanceolate, acuminate, shortly decurrent, persistent, white within at anthesis, green without. SPADIX : stipitate, cylindric, obtuse. FLOWERS : bisexual, often male at spadix apex, perigone absent. STAMENS : ca. 6, sometimes more, filaments somewhat flattened, anthers short, connective slender, short, thecae ellipsoid, opposite, dehiscing by longitudinal slit. POLLEN : diaperturate, globose, small (mean 23 µm.), exine foveolate, apertural exine verrucate. GYNOECIUM : shortly ovoid, 1-locular, ovules 6-9, anatropous, oblong, funicles short, placenta basal, style attenuate, stigma small, subhemispheric. BERRY : spheroid-conic, several-seeded, red. SEED : terete-oblong, testa thick, scrobiculate towards chalaza, sulcate-striate towards micropyle, raphe prominent, embryo axile, elongate, endosperm copious.
Temp. & Subarctic Northern Hemisphere.
In forest swamps, often between forest margins and raised bogs, often with Sphagnum, up to 1270m alt.; creeping helophyte in streams and ponds.

Native to:

Alaska, Alberta, Altay, Amur, Austria, Baltic States, Belarus, Belgium, British Columbia, Buryatiya, Central European Rus, Chita, Connecticut, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, East European Russia, Finland, France, Germany, Illinois, Indiana, Inner Mongolia, Irkutsk, Japan, Kamchatka, Khabarovsk, Korea, Krasnoyarsk, Kuril Is., Labrador, Maine, Manchuria, Manitoba, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Netherlands, New Brunswick, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Newfoundland, North Dakota, North European Russi, Northwest European R, Northwest Territorie, Norway, Nova Scotia, Ohio, Ontario, Pennsylvania, Poland, Primorye, Prince Edward I., Québec, Rhode I., Romania, Sakhalin, Saskatchewan, South European Russi, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Tuva, Ukraine, Vermont, West Siberia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Yakutskiya, Yukon

Introduced into:

Great Britain

Calla L. appears in other Kew resources:

First published in Sp. Pl.: 968 (1753)

Accepted by

  • Govaerts, R. & Frodin, D.G. (2002). World Checklist and Bibliography of Araceae (and Acoraceae): 1-560. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
  • Govaerts, R. (1999). World Checklist of Seed Plants 3(1, 2a & 2b): 1-1532. MIM, Deurne.


CATE Araceae

  • Mayo, S.J., Bogner, J. & Boyce, P.C. 1997. The genera of Araceae. 370 pp.
  • Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew 2008. World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

  • CATE Araceae

    Haigh, A., Clark, B., Reynolds, L., Mayo, S.J., Croat, T.B., Lay, L., Boyce, P.C., Mora, M., Bogner, J., Sellaro, M., Wong, S.Y., Kostelac, C., Grayum, M.H., Keating, R.C., Ruckert, G., Naylor, M.F. and Hay, A., CATE Araceae, 17 Dec 2011.

  • Kew Backbone Distributions

    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2022. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.

  • Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone

    The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families 2022. Published on the Internet at and
    © Copyright 2017 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Selected Plant Families.