Amaryllis is a popular flowering bulb grown for its spectacular bloom during the winter months. Bulbs can be purchased both in pre-planted pots and unpotted. The unpotted bulbs usually cost less and the potting procedure is simple. Well-drained potting soil and a suitable container are that is needed.
Amaryllis bulbs should be planted in pots which are approximately one to two inches wider than the diameter of the bulb. Containers may be plastic or clay but should have drainage holes in the bottom of the pot. Add a small amount of potting soil to the bottom of the pot; center the bulb in the middle of the pot. Firming it around the roots and bulb, add additional potting soil. When finished potting, the upper one-half to two-thirds of the bulb should remain above the soil surface. Leave about one inch between the soil surface and the pot’s rim.
Water well and place it in a cool (60°F), low light location. Water sparingly until growth appears. When growth begins, water more frequently and move the plant to a warm, sunny window. Apply a water-soluble fertilizer every two to four weeks. Add SUPERthrive (one drop per cup or ¼ tsp. per gallon of water) with each watering and fertilizer application. Pot bulbs in early November for blooms during the Christmas holidays.
Flowering normally occurs about six to eight weeks after potting. A large, top grade bulb should produce two flower stalks with four flowers on each stem. The individual flowers may be six to eight inches in diameter. Excellent varieties include: ‘Red Lion’ – deep crimson red, ‘White Christmas’ – snow white, ‘Prince Carnival’ – white with red stripes, ‘Minerva’ – red with white star, and ‘Picotee’ – white with red edges.
- Remove dead flowers
- Place the plant in direct
- Keep leaves actively growing during the
- In late summer, withhold water until the leaves
- After the leaves die, store the potted bulb in a cool location (45-50°F at night).
- After two to three months, repot with new potting mix, resume watering and move the plant to low Flower buds will appear in a few weeks.
*According to the University of Illinois Horticultural Extension.