nonforcing method to bloom hybrids fall or winter

amaryllisstudygroupAugust 9, 2012

I developed this technique to bloom already planted [at least one year] amaryllis in the fall or winter without putting them through a forcing program [picking-leaf cutting-drying-cool storage-prechilling-replanting/watering]. This is not for newly purchased forced bulbs.

My technique breaks down like this [picking, 5 to 7 days of drying-replanting/watering.

The advantages are::

You can time the bloom period to within a few days [specific holidays or other occassions].

You can use bulbs you have planted in your garden, greenhouse or in your kitchen as long as they have been planted in the same place/container for at least a year.

You can replant into the garden [in early fall in warm climates] or into pots for reblooming.

It is much less actual physical work than forcing programs and faster.

You can have them in bloom in 25 to 46 days.

The bulb must have been growing with new leaves for at least 2 months after the previous bloom.

Start with the bulb's character. It should be growing well with at least seven leaves. It should be healthy with no diseases and not more than a few small nibbles from pestws and no infestations. This works very well with the large flower/large bulb types and the small bulb types from South Africa. It does not do as well with cybister hybrids [sometimes less than 25% rebloom success) although if it does not bloom it will just revert to its normal bloom time the next spring. Usual success rates with other than cybister hybrids is above 80%. I have no data for you on species.

Step by step Technique.

Unplant[pick] your chosen bulb.

Lay it on its side on the ground/lawn part sunshade or indoors with a window or greenhouse for 5 days [does not matter if it rains].


After 5 days, replant.

In yard/garden widest part of the bulb

is the soil line with a 4 inch tile

buried immediately the base of the bulb.

In a 10 or more inch pot plant only the

roots with the bulb resting on the soil

surface using a fairly tight soil mix

of at least 50% sand with good drainag.

You want plenty of soil to anchor the


Water immediately and every 3 weeks. Do not let drain

water stand in the saucer under the pot.

Keep your pot in front of a sunny window and look at it

at least twice per day.

Now that you can make it bloom let us look at timing.

From picking day it is 5 days [or 4 or 7 or 8 if you

have to go out of town for a weekend. I tested at 1, 5,

15, & 30 days. At 30 days I sometimes saw some leaf

yellowing. At 15 days I sometimes saw sliglimpness in


5 days

From replanting day different have different time for

planting to bloom. Hadeco's Joker takes about 20 days.

I use 39 days as my base planting to bloom # of days

for most garden type [big bulb/buig flower].

39 days

So subtract about 47 days from the holiday, birthday, anniversary, office party, or celebration you are aiming for. The extra days are to have fuller bloom at event.

Mark your calendar for Unplanting/picking day, Replanting day, Blooming/event day.

Email me at with your pictures, successes, questions, comments.

You are now working in a new area of the bloom/growth cycle

. Botanists & Cornell UNIV. don't know this. They don't know this yet in Holland, Brazil, Thailand, China,

E. William Warren, Amaryllis Study Group

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Thanks very much for providing such valuable reference meaning and the method��

    Bookmark   August 13, 2012 at 10:36PM
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You are welcome Tiger Fox. The Dutch growers and flowermarkets have used the forcing process for amaryllis to controll the market so tightly for fall and winter holidays seasons by incorporating it into the world distribution chain. This has been great for introducing some of the most beautiful hybrid flowers on Earth, but has almost reduced this fairly easy perrenial plant to an expensive annual. I would like more people in more regions to enjoy more scapes per bloomset; more flowers per scape; more bloomsets per season; very long seasons [4 to 6 months].
You will find many well known experts saying these techniques can't be done. They are correct. They can't do them. You can. Try it and enjoy. If it does not work for you, email me. I have failed in my instructions and need to improve my communications.
Two of my most troubling failures have been with people who speak another language. In each case it was an assumption I made that they would know a specific step. I am about to try to help one of them with my techniques and some other difficulties they have. It is a wonderful personal challenge.
Soon I expect to publish a guide to growing and blooming techniques only. No history or other background.
Bill Warren

    Bookmark   August 17, 2012 at 5:17PM
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brigarif Khan

I lost many bulbs when you advocated a drying period of 4 weeks. Any way I am going to try it.

[In yard/garden widest part of the bulb is the soil line with a 4 inch tile
buried immediately the base of the bulb.]

I plant my bulbs 8 inches apart from centre to centre. You recommend a bed having 4 inch tiles 1.5 inches below the soil surface spaced 4 inches apart and the bulb resting on the tile. The roots will spread on the tile and dip down in that 4 inch space shared by two bulbs.

[Keep your pot in front of a sunny window and look at it
at least twice per day.]
Would looking at it four time a day be more beneficial?

    Bookmark   August 18, 2012 at 3:50AM
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kaboehm (zone 9a, TX USA)

Bill, if I put them in a pot, do I still need the tile or is that only for when they are planted in the ground? I am going to try this, but it will be interesting as when the days reach 65 consistantly, I usually get blooms 30-45 days later. I am going to try this with a couple bulbs to see what happens! At least we aren't having the heat we had last year!

    Bookmark   August 18, 2012 at 9:01PM
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