Grow Amaryllis

There is nothing nicer to mark the Christmas period than with fresh flowering bulbs around the house. The house can be filled with the fragrances of hyacinth, alongside the dramatic and stunning blooms of amaryllis (Hippeastrum). Not only are they easy to grow and within everyone’s capability, they make a fantastic gift to be given around the festive season.

 

HOW TO GROW AMARYLLIS

 

What you’ll need:

  • Amaryllis bulb

  • A pot 12-15cm (6-8”) wide

  • Potting compost/ bulb fibre.

  • Bamboo Stake

 

PLANTING A NEW AMARYLLIS BULB

  1. Choose a firm plump bulb tha has some roots at the base.

  2. Pot up 6-8 weeks before bloom is required. Your bulb should fit snuggly in the pot. Amaryllis bulbs like to feel crowded in the pot in order to bloom. Your pot should have drainage holes in it.

  3. Fill up the pot partially with compost and place the bulb on top. Fill around the bulb with compost but leave about a third of it exposed.

  4. Push in gently a bamboo stake by the side of the bulb. Amaryllis can be top heavy and you will need this later to support the flower bloom.

  5. Water well. Do not allow water to go down the neck of the bulb as this will cause damage.

  6. Put the pot in a bright, indirect light, water but not excessively.

  7. A thick stalk should appear in a couple of weeks. The flat leaves will appear as the flower stalks matures.

  8. Turn the pot every few days so that it grows straight.

  9. Feed your amaryllis with a half strength water soluble fertilizer every 2-3 weeks.

  10. The flower stalk will continue to grow and bloom, tie to stake when it becomes top heavy.

 

AFTERCARE

  1. To force your bloom for the following Christmas, cut back flower stalk after flower fades, but allow the foliage to continue to grow. It can be placed outside during the summer if weather permits.

  2. Keep the soil watered, moist to the touch but not wet.

  3. Stop feeding in August.

  4. Bring indoors in September and stop watering. The foliage will have started to die back by this time. The lack of foliage and water will encourage the bulb to send out another flower stalk. Move at this point to a sunny spot and resume watering.

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