Peace Lily not Blooming? | Reasons Why & How to Fix

There are very few houseplants that possess the elegance of a Peace Lily. Swathes of glossy dark green foliage against the crisp white minimalism of their showy Spathes. They are arguably timeless, yet contemporary at the same time.   

Whilst their leaves alone are impressive, a no-show when it comes to their blooms is a disappointment and it can be disheartening to think that all your care and attention is not paying off in the way you want.

Peace Lily not Blooming?

The truth is, Peace lilies aren’t high maintenance as such, but they do require some special attention and a little bit of know-how when it comes to enabling them to put on a show and look their best. 

In my experience, the key is to avoid stress caused by environmental factors that don’t meet their tropical expectations and, have the patience and knowledge to understand that these beauties won’t bloom until they have reached maturity. 

So, let’s get started, here is everything you need to know to avoid your Peace lily not blooming and to set you on the right track of caring for it in the right way. 

How to Get a Peace Lily Plant to Bloom

The main factor which will influence your peace lily’s ability to bloom is the type of cultivar it is. That is because certain cultivars will bloom more abundantly compared to others.

The Little Angel Peace Lily is one such example and the Allison ™ is another. It’s worth checking out the nature of the cultivar before you buy it if you’re looking for a prolific blooming Peace lily. Bear in mind that some varieties are bred for their foliage rather than their ability to produce flowers.

Additionally, there are other factors that need to be paid attention to if you want to make the most out of your Peace lily’s ability to flower:

  • Lighting: The quantity received will influence your peace lily’s ability to bloom. 
  • Water: Excessive quantities can be dangerous for your plant and even fatal to it.
  • Humidity: Peace lilies love high humidity owing to their tropical origins and care must be taken to protect them from excessive dryness.
  • Soil mix: Must be the right acidity and contain the right combination of components to encourage nutrient and moisture retention.
  • Fertilizer: The wrong kind can produce undesirable results or even prevent blooming altogether.

Keep reading to the end for my top tips on how to care for your Peace lily and provide it with the right environment to flourish so you’re not left wondering ‘why is my Peace Lily not blooming?’

Peace Lily Lifespan

Peace lilies live for an average of 3 – 5 years and will only bloom when they are mature. However, the rate at which they reach that point in their lifecycle is largely dependent on the means used to propagate them. Those which are propagated by seed tend to take longer as opposed to those propagated by division.

They of course pale in comparison to other longer-lived plants in this regard such as spider plants which live for 20 years, sago palms which can live for 30 – 50 years, or jade plants which can live for as many as 100 years.

When Do Peace Lilies Flower?

Once they are mature, they will generally bloom twice a year: once in spring and again in fall, at which point they produce spathes that can last for about a month.

It is also possible to get them to bloom all year round. Although this is predominantly in more temperate zones from 8 through to 11. 

Flowering in Winter 

Certain cultivars will bloom in winter when provided with optimal conditions. These include mild temperatures of 60 – 65° Fahrenheit (15.6 -18.3° Celsius); avoiding overwatering; planting in well-draining soil; providing adequate amounts of humidity (50 – 60%) and light (indirect is best), and feeding with a good quality fertilizer for Peace Lilies.

Peace Lily Care Requirements

Peace lilies are not horticultural divas by any stretch of the imagination. That said, they will let you know if they feel neglected. But more than that, they’re likely to reward attentive care with beautiful foliage and their unique single-petalled blossoms.

I found that to get my peace lily to bloom when the time was right, I had to take care of it on all these fronts:

Temperature & Humidity

Owing to their origins in warm humid climates, peace lilies love warm, moisture-laden air. According to Clemson Cooperative Extension, their very favorite temperature range which encourages their best behavior falls between daytime temperatures of 68 – 85 °Fahrenheit and about 10 °Fahrenheit lower at night. 

These houseplants’ dislike of cooler weather means their growth rates will slow when temperatures fall below 60° Fahrenheit (15.6° Celsius).

Should temperatures plummet further to below 45° Fahrenheit Peace lilies can be prone to shock. They are not hardy and so exposure to frost and frozen roots will spell doom for them and it is unlikely they will survive if left for a prolonged period.

High humidity will remind peace lilies of their tropical origins. Hence 50 or even 60% is recommended. A plant humidifier can help and so too can misting weekly or placing pebbles in their bottom tray and adding a small quantity of water to it.

Depleted Soil Nutrients

The soil in which you grow your peace lily will eventually run out of nutrients. Especially since flushing it out while watering the plant will also wash them out too. Hence you will need to change it when repotting — which you might have to do every year or every 2 years at the most.

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Soil Type

Peace lilies love well-draining soil which contains plenty of organic matter. They also prefer it to be on the slightly acidic side of things: a pH of 5.8 – 6.5 is desirable.

In addition to being capable of letting go of excess moisture, the ideal soil mix for your flowers must also be capable of retaining just some of it in the right amounts.

So, what should the best potting mix come with? Ideally, it should contain the following:

  • Perlite: Moisture-saturated volcanic glass, this component will aerate your soil mix and enable it to retain water without becoming water-logged.
  • Earthworm castings: The by-products of earthworms’ digestion, will prevent the minerals present in the soil mix from being washed out. They will also contribute to its ability to retain water while also aerating it.
  • Coir: The ground husk of coconuts, the coir is known for its ability to retain water. It is also rich in potassium and phosphorus. 
  • Aged pine bark: This component provides plants with the carbon they need. It also adds lightness and aeration to the soil mix.
  • Compost: Natural organic decayed matter, compost is rich in nutrients which can be beneficial to your peace lily.

Additional ingredients you may find in your soil mix include:

  • Peat moss or Sphagnum: Made from decayed moss formed over millennia, peat moss serves to lower the pH of soil. It is also capable of retaining moisture and releasing it to your peace lily gradually.
  • Loam: A perfect balance of clay, sand, and silt, loam serves to aerate the soil providing your peaceful lily’s roots with oxygen. It also prevents nutrients from leaching out of the soil promptly so that they’re available for longer.

Peace Lily Fertilizing

These houseplants do not require much fertilizer during their winter dormancy. Depending on whether you use granules or liquid, stick to fertilizing them no more than every two weeks in the spring and summer, and every six weeks in the fall and winter.

Re-potting

peace lily not blooming

Re-potting is an essential part of every houseplant owner’s remit and the following reasons explain why you’ll need to do it for your Peace lily:

Extensive root growth: As time progresses your plant will outgrow its potted home. One of the best ways you’d be able to tell is when its roots start peeking out of the holes at the pot’s base. Frequent wilting and the prompt drainage of water are also additional clues. 

You will need to obtain a new pot that is 1 – 2 inches wider than the former in diameter (and is preferably clay or terracotta owing to their moisture-wicking qualities).

Why does the size count? Because a pot that is too large would contain excess moisture which could cause a few problems for the plant’s roots later on.

Once you’ve taken care of your plant’s accommodation, you will also need a fresh batch of soil mix. 

Next, you will also need to detangle the roots carefully before replanting the flowering shrub in its new home. 

This can be done by:

  • Placing some of the soil mixes to form a platform that will allow your peace lily to stand at the same level as it did in its old pot.
  • Placed the plant into the pot and added the rest of the mix taking care to ensure no open spaces are left in the soil.
  • Watering your plant lightly.

 Special care should be taken not to plant the peace lily too deep in the new pot — its stem should ideally begin 1 inch lower than the rim.

The soil will need to be watered lightly and the newly transferred plant allowed to convalesce in a shady spot. 

If you choose to, you may also split the plant into new individual peace lilies. In which case you will need to ensure the soil mix is the same as the product you used previously. The same also holds true for levels of light — the culprit in the case of my peace lily.

Waterlogged soil: Soggy soil is also another reason why you may decide to empty the pot or change it. Make sure that your soil is well-draining and that the pot your Peace lily is planted in has good-sized drainage holes that allow excess water to run freely through. 

Soggy soil equals soggy roots and that will and most often does result in root rot. As with most tropicals, Peace Lilies cannot tolerate soggy roots.

Position & Lighting

These two factors are important when it comes to getting your peace lily to bloom as I found out at the time. The wrong position and direct exposure to sunlight can result in your leaves turning brown at the tips.

On the other hand, insufficient lighting will prevent your houseplant from blooming. It is worth noting that peace lilies lived on the forest floor content with dappled light, long before they became a household favorite. It’s a preference they still cling to. 

That means placing them where they will get 6 hours of indirect sunlight on a daily basis. (East-facing windows are generally your best bet since they tend to get early morning sunlight.)

Watering

Watering your peace lily is a rather straightforward affair. All you have to do is check the soil. Is it uppermost 1 inch dry? Then your plant is due to a drink. 

Simply place the plant in a spot in which you can let water flow freely: your bathtub, your sink, your garden. Taking filtered water (or tap water that has been left standing for a day to get the chlorine in it to evaporate), irrigate the plant. Allow standing for a while until the water is completely drained before placing it back on its saucer.

If necessary you can carry out a check or two to make sure no water has accumulated in the saucer. This is because leaving your plant’s roots exposed to moisture can cause root rot leading to the plant’s leaves dropping and turning yellow.

Impact on Air Quality

Peace lilies are known for their air purifying qualities and are recognized as beneficial plants for people who suffer from conditions such as asthma. However, overwatering many plants can in fact produce detrimental mold spores within the soil causing irritation if inhaled.

FAQ: How to Get a Peace Lily Plant to Bloom

Peace Lily not Blooming: Final Thoughts

The type of cultivar, the fertilizer you use, the kind of soil, ambient lighting, temperature, and humidity will determine whether your peace lily will bloom or not.

Paying close attention to them can make a huge difference and yield rich dividends making for a happier plant and the beautiful aesthetic that comes with owning one of these fabulous house plants.