How to Grow Amaryllis?
Posted by Ben Rotteveel on

How to Grow Amaryllis?

AMARYLLIS PLANTING GUIDE

Amaryllis is the ultimate Holiday Season flower, making a powerful statement with its beautiful trumpet flowers and impressively large bulb. Ideal for indoor growing in colder climes, they also do very well in the ground in the warmer areas (zone 9-11), giving people who normally have to forego flower bulbs a chance to enjoy these beauties all year ‘round.

 

QUICK GUIDE

  • WHEN

Indoors: Plant 4-8 weeks before desired blooming time

Outdoors: Plant in fall, blooms in spring


  • WHERE

Indoors: All zones, in a brightly lit place like a windowsill

Outdoors: Hardiness zone 9-11

Partial shade

Well-draining soil


  • WATER

After planting and during growth


  • WIDTH & DEPTH

Indoors: 1” apart

Outdoors: 4” apart

Depth: Pointy end sticking out 1”


Arrival

When your DutchGrown amaryllis arrive and you can’t plant them immediately, it’s important to store them correctly: unpack them right away and put them in a dry place with plenty of air circulation, where the temperature is between 40 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit.


Garden & Container Planting

Flower bulbs are tough cookies that are easy to grow, but one thing they hate is getting their feet wet: a bulb that is ‘bathing’ in water will rot in no time. So avoid soggy soil at all cost – this means places where you can still see puddles 5-6 hours after a rainstorm. Another thing you can do is to upgrade potentially soggy soil by adding organic material such as peat, bark or manure. When it comes to planting bulbs in containers, the mantra is exactly the same: drainage-drainage-drainage. Get a pot or box with at least some drainage holes at the bottom. 

Amaryllis need the sun to grow, but full sun can burn their leaves, so a place with dappled sunlight or some shade is ideal. 

Amaryllis don’t need a cooling period, so both indoors and outdoors they can be exposed to light and warmth right after planting.

To help the bulbs settle and grow roots quickly, it’s important to water them well after planting. After that they’ll need some light watering once the first green growths are starting to appear.

During blooming season, you generally don’t have to water your amaryllis, but you can water them when there hasn’t been any rain for 3-5 days. 

After amaryllis have finished blooming, don’t cut the foliage straight away: through photosynthesis the leaves will create nutrients that the bulb will be needing for its next growing season. After a few weeks the foliage will automatically yellow and die back, and then you can remove it. Now the bulb will be going dormant, and won’t need any watering until next spring. 


How to plant Amaryllis indoors:

  1. Around 6 weeks before your intended blooming time, fill a sturdy pot two inches wider and a few inches taller than the bulb with well-draining soil.
  2. Place the Amaryllis in the pot with their pointy end up and cover them with soil, but make sure 1” of the pointy end remains uncovered.
  3. Amaryllis like to be close together, so if you plant more than one in a pot, keep about 1” between them. 
  4. Water well.
  5. Place the pot in a sunny location, like a windowsill. Make sure to rotate the pot daily so the Amaryllis won’t start leaning over to one side. 
  6. When new green growth appears it’s time to start watering again, but just to keep the soil moist, not waterlogged.
  7. After the amaryllis have bloomed don’t cut off the foliage. Leave it until it’s completely withered and yellow, then remove.

Apricot Salmon Amaryllis Rilona - How to Plant Amaryllis Bulbs?


How to plant amaryllis in your garden (in hardiness zones 9-11):

  1. In fall, find a spot with partial sunlight and well-draining soil.
  2. Place the Amaryllis bulb in the soil with the pointy end up and cover them with soil, but make sure that 1” of the pointy end remains uncovered.
  3. Amaryllis looks best in groups of 5-7 bulbs, with about 4” between each bulb.
  4. Water well and wait for spring.
  5. When new green growth appears it’s time to start watering again, but just to keep the soil moist, not waterlogged.
  6. After the amaryllis have bloomed don’t cut off the foliage. Leave it until it’s completely withered and yellow, then remove.

How to Plant Amaryllis Bulbs? - Your Planting Guide


Special Second Round

After your Amaryllis has bloomed, be it indoors or outdoors, you don’t have to wait another year for it to bloom again.

Once the flowers have faded completely, it’s time to cut off the flower stems at about ½” from the bulb. However, you mustn’t snip off the leaves. Place the plant in a sunny spot so the leaves can continue to make nutrients through photosynthesis, nourishment which will go back into the bulb for the next round of blooming. During this time keep watering the plant, but only to keep the soil moist, not waterlogged.
If your Amaryllis was living indoors, you can place it outside in summer, in a sunny location where you can be sure night temperatures will never dip below 50 degrees F. Make sure that the pot they are in has drainage holes, or plant them in the ground for the time being, again with 1” of the pointy end still visible.  When autumn arrives it’s time to bring the bulbs back inside.
Cut of all the foliage at about 1-2” from the top of the bulb and place the bulbs in a dark and dry place like a basement. At this point you should stop watering them, so they can enter their dormant phase, which should last about 10-12 weeks.
After the dormancy period is over, you can follow the steps for growing Amaryllis indoors again and within 6-8 weeks you’ll have another beautiful blooming flower.


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