Zantedeschia aethiopica

Zantedeschia aethiopica (L.) Spreng. (S Afr.) – A rare and probably ephemeral garden throw-out or relic. First documented from woodland in Mol in 2013. Since then recorded in several additional localities (e.g. Neerpelt, Opwijk, Schoten,…) in similar habitats.
This is by far the hardiest of all species of Zantedeschia and this particularly holds true for certain cultivars such as ‘Crowborough’, ‘Green Goddess’ and ‘Little Gem’ (Yeo 1984). Despite the specific epitheton, this species is native in South Africa, not Ethiopia.
Zantedeschia aethiopica has become widely naturalized in parts of southern Europe (for instance in the Iberian Peninsula, where it is probably dispersed by berry-eating birds; Galán & Castroviejo 2007) but it is much less easily established in the wild further north. It is known, for instance, from climatologically suitable regions in the British Isles (Stace 2010). In some areas in its introduced range it is considered an invasive species, for instance in Hawaii, Australia, New Zealand and La Reunion (PIER 2006; see also Weber 2017).

Selected literature:

Galán A. & Castroviejo S. (2007) Zantedeschia. In: Castroviejo S. (ed.), Flora Iberica, vol. 18. Real Jardín Botánico, Madrid: 308-310. [available online at:

PIER (Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk) (2006) Zantedeschia aethiopica. [available online at:]

Reddy N.P. & Bahadur B. (1977) Occurrence of alternative vernation in spathe of Zantedeschia aethiopica and other Araceae. J. Bombay Nat. Hist. Soc. 74(2): 395-399.

Singh Y., van Wyk A.E. & Baijnath H. (1996) Floral biology of Zantedeschia aethiopica (L.) Spreng. (Araceae). S. African J. Bot. 62: 146-150. [available online at:]

Stace C. (2010) New flora of the British Isles, 3th ed.: XXXII + 1232 p. Cambridge University Press.

Weber E. (2017) Invasive Plant Species of the World (2nd Ed.): A Reference Guide to Environmental Weeds. Potsdam, Germany.

Yeo P.F. (1984) Zantedeschia. In: Walters S.M. & al. (eds.), The European Garden Flora, vol. 2: 97-98. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith