Thursday, November 1, 2012

Amarylis update..........

Michele Koskinen

Amarylis are wonderful flowers to force in the dead of winter to give the gardener a ray of sunshine. In two previous blogs two Master Gardeners gave instructions on  Forcing Amarylis and also how to grow your bulbs through the summer to get them strong and happy for the next year.

This gardener has tried to get the bulbs to rebloom for several years without luck. This year I took all of my bulbs, including the one that I thought dead and followed the instructions to put them into the garden as prescribed by the post  Don't let your Amarylis Die.

The original instructions I followed were about forcing the bulbs provided by the vendor at the time of purchase. I was remiss in actually growing the bulbs in my garden for the summer. I left them in their pots and kept them in my home on a sunny window. The leaves were often weak and could not carry their weight.  This year I took them outside and potted them in a container in a partly sunny spot and watered them infrequently. My foliage has been the strongest and greenest I have ever seen. Even the one I thought was dead has bulked up and looks like it may have a chance to bloom.

I lifted them in late September and will allow them to die back and rest in a cool dry spot 40 to 50F for 8 to 10 weeks. (You can store your bulbs in the crisper of the refrigerator if you have room.) In early January I will remove them from cold storage and start looking for any emerging stalk and will repot each bulb, staggering the time line by two weeks so I have blooms for several months.  Choose a pot no more than 2" larger than the bulb as Amarylis choose to be potbound. 

For more information I found several interesting websites:

Additional info

Martha Stewert Forcing Bulbs


The United States National Arboretum

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