February 26, 2024

Blooming an Amaryllis

amaryllis-bulbsA cheerful amaryllis makes a perfect holiday gift and I was happy to receive one this holiday season! For those of you who may have received one and are not really sure how to go about getting it started, follow these instructions for blooming success.  It’s really so simple and these showy plants will brighten up any room they are placed in.  Do keep in mind however, that if you place them in bright direct sun, your blooms won’t last.

Here is how to pot and care for your amaryllis:

Choose a container with drainage holes that’s about 2 inches wider in diameter than your bulb and several inches deeper than it’s roots.  Add about an inch or so of loose potting mix to the container.

Place the bulb in the container and add potting mix around it, being careful not to damage the roots.  Leave the top third of the bulb exposed.

Moisten the soil and press it down gently to secure the bulb and eliminate air pockets.  Water and light will bring the bulbs from the dormant stage into the growth stage so put the amaryllis in a warm spot with indirect light.  Water lightly until the flower bud and leaves emerge.  Once this has happens, move to a cooler, lighter area and water regularly, keeping the soil moist but not soggy.  Keep the flowering blub away from bright light to extend flowering.

You can extend the length of the flowering time in two ways.  Traditionally, by staggering the plantings.  You can plant one bulb a week into a larger container and when the flowers start blooming in 6-8 weeks, they’ll start a new bloom every week or so for each bulb that you have planted.

Another, and I think more convenient way is to do all the planting at the same time but to use different varieties of bulbs.  With this method, you can plant all at once but the bulbs won’t  come into flower all at the same time even though planted together.  Different varieties bloom early, mid-season and late season taking various amounts of time to bloom.  See list below for some ideas.

Early Blooming Varieties

These bloom 5-8 weeks after planting

Single flowering:
Orange Sovereign, Lucky Strike, Apple Blossom, Minerva, Roma, Vera, Mont Blanc.

Double Flowering:
Lady Jane, Mary Lou, Aphrodite, Pasadena

Donau, Scarlet Baby, Giraffe, Amoretta, Pamela

Mid-Season Blooming Varieties

These bloom 7-10 weeks after planting

Red Lion, Lemon Lime, Liberty, Royal Velvet, Hercules, Wonderland, Rilona, Picotee

Double Flowering:
Double Record, Unique, Blossom Peacock, White Peacock

Cybister Varieties
Emerald, Ruby Meyer


Pink Floyd

Late Season Blooming Varieties

These bloom 9-12 weeks after planting.

Las Vegas, Clown, Piquant, Toronto, Vlammenspel, Happy Memory, Charisma

Double Flowering
Promise, Dancing Queen, Flaming Peacock, Andes

La Paz, Chico

Amputo, Misty

You can mix and match.  Planting the late bloomers in late winter will give you your first spring blooms.

Happy Blooming!

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