Amaryllis

(Question)

How do you save a spectacular Amaryllis and get it to re-bloom next Christmas?

 

(Answer)

Once blooming is finished, cut off flowers to prevent seed production but leaving the flower stalk intact. Move plant into a bright sunny location and continue to water regularly. Watering should be done from above and only when the top 2 inches of soil are dry – let excess water drain away. Feed using a balanced 20/20/20 fertilizer on a regular basis. Cut flower stalk off at base once it has turned yellow but continue to maintain & care for the foliage. Once the last chance of frost has past, the plant, still in its pot, should be moved outdoors – initially into a shaded place where it gets indirect sunlight. It can gradually be moved into a sunny location where the pot should be sunk into the soil – getting 6 hours of full sun daily. It should be watered regularly and fertilized monthly while outside. In the autumn, before first frost, dig up the pot and bring the plant inside. Store the bulb, still in its pot, in a cool, dry, dark space in your house – bulb must be cold but not frozen. Do not water the plant anymore. After a couple of weeks, the foliage should have shriveled and can be cut off at the base. Bulbs should be inspected on a weekly basis to check for mold, rot, disease or insect damage – if anything is found, bulb should be discarded. This dormant period usually lasts for 8-12 weeks but any bulbs found to be putting out new growth should be brought up to the light and watered. Dormancy can be broken in bulbs with no new growth after this time by water & light, allowing 4-6 weeks until blooming. Amaryllis bloom best when they are pot-bound so should have only one inch of soil between pot and bulb all the way around.  Re-pot once every 3 or 4 years.