Although many people associate amaryllis blooms with the Christmas season, the normal blooming season for them is actually spring. The blooming amaryllises that are found in garden centers and florists during the holidays are actually grown in greenhouses. Their gorgeous trumpet shaped flowers are, without a doubt, my favorite way to bring color into my home during the holidays. These popular flowers, originating in the tropical areas of South America, cover the color spectrum. Available in lemon-lime, white, velvety reds, orange, salmon, magenta, mahogany and pink, these exotic blooms look beautiful in any setting. Multi-colored amaryllis are also gaining popularity. For the past several years I plant the bulbs left from Christmas blooms in my yard after the last frost in the early spring. This garden gift will just keep on giving! Each spring it is exciting to see the flower tips emerging. Below is an amaryllis we enjoyed a couple of years ago during the holidays. In most of the South, they can be added or your garden. I like to think that I am “recycling” them!
Below are a few breath-taking amaryllises I photographed recently in local neighborhoods.
The word “amaryllis” comes from a Greek word meaning “to sparkle”. It symbolizes pride, determination, and radiant beauty.
Admire the next four breath-taking blooms from the collections of Laura Galloway (top two) and Marie Stone (bottom two).
Below is a vignette I set up in my back yard incorporating some of the amaryllis blooms from my garden.
Kathleen Rane created this gorgeous centerpiece for her breakfast room table at garden club meeting. I love how it complements the painting in the background.
I love the beauty and simplicity of staggering a few amaryllis blooms on a sideboard or table. These were freshly cut from my yard.
TEN EASY TRIED AND TRUE TIPS TO ENSURE A HEALTHY AMARYLLIS
- Cut the flower stalk near the top of the bulb after the last flower has faded.
- Move to the sunniest location in your house or greenhouse.
- Fertilize monthly with a liquid fertilizer, and water as needed, never allowing the soil to get completely dry out.
- Move outside after the threat of frosts is over in the spring, fertilizing every two months. Water as needed, even daily in the hottest weather.
- In September, stop fertilizing and water once each week.
- In October, quit watering completely. The leaves will turn yellow, and they should be cut off.
- Take inside before the first frost and ignore for two months.
- After this two month period, a flower should emerge from the bulb.
- Bring back to a sunny location in your home, and water normally.
- As the stem grows, you may need to support it. Curly willow, bamboo, or decorative orchid stakes make attractive supports.
And like many Southern gardeners, you may also plant the bulbs in the early spring. Whether you decide to enjoy them year after year indoors or “recycled’ in your garden, the exuberant blooms of the amaryllis always are always astounding! Each bloom is so perfectly formed – a marvel of our Master Gardener…..