Christmas Amaryllis never bloomed. What did I do wrong?

cjhodgeAugust 8, 2006

I bought a Red Lion amaryllis bulb last year before Christmas from Lowe's. It came as a kit with pot/soil/bulb. I planted it as the instructions said and all it did was grow leaves. Long leaves. I left it to grow and when the leaves finally started turning yellow I cut back on watering. When the leaves finally died I quit watering all together and put it in the coolest, darkest place I could find. I checked it a few weeks ago and it was starting to grow some leaves. I went ahead and took it out and potted it. It now lives on the front porch that gets sun all day. The longest leaf is probably 4 inches long. The rest get shorter. It has 3-4 leaves. It does look like one side of the bulb is bigger than the other, but it has looked like this ever since I potted it the second time.

What am I doing wrong?

I haven't ever fertilized the buld. Could this be the problem?

Thanks

Casey

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tommyr_gw

You never fertilized it??? These are heavy feeders and need full sun as well. Feed every other watering with half strength Miracle grow or an equivilent. Usually if a plant doesn't bloom it's due to not enough food and/or light. Also, sometimes they will go a year without blooming, you can imagine the energy it takes to make those amazing flowers! Start feeding it!

Tom

    Bookmark   August 11, 2006 at 8:32AM
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haweha

Bulbs of the common big blooming cultivars contain at least one preformed bud and do principally NOT need any fertilizing up to the time point when the flower scape has reached full size and the blooms open.
This is the reason for the ubiquitary amaryllogene advice - discovered on almost every plastic label accompanied with potted knight star lilies which tells
"fertilizer usually not necessary"
This is fully correct in the case that the plant will be delivered to the waste bucket afterwards - which is very common and btw fully intended by the bulb traders *lol*

However, regular fertilization is absolutely necessary in order to re-establish the bulb which is so exhausted after having generated such a huge plant mass in scapes and leaves.

The importance of a carefull husbandry for the plant at the windowsill to make it REbloom is generally underestimated (my opinion) With certainty it is not sufficient that the plant be keeping its leaves but for some weeks after it has bloomed - and then these leaves, while regarded as undecorative, often underdeveloped or even collapsed due to irregeular watering are cut away...

The leaves should instead remain living for a timespan in the magnitude of 1/2 year and more, during which even fresh new leaves will be produced. BTW this will fill up the leaf bush and considerably enhance the performance of your knight star lily!
This aim can only be achieved by regular waterings and fertilizing and nursing the plant at a windowsill which is not TOOO dark... It is wise to support the leaves, which usually tend to become very long indoors to protect them from collapsing and becoming useless for the plant. Use adhesive films for that purpose.

Now, back to the start question:
There are several reason why blooms remained absent in the first season, Casey.
The bulb might have been stored far too long prior to forcement, and the buds have already shriveled up meanwhile, or the scape was damaged by bulb scale mites, which are seemingly an inevitable adjunct to every hippeastrum bulb (my personal experience). OR, and this happens very often, you watered to amply at the very beginning of the forcement. The compost should be watered vwery sparingly at this stage.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2006 at 2:14PM
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claudosu(z7 OK)

Yes that happened to me as well. Last christmas I bought an appleblossom and a red lion. The apple blossom performed great, and it got me hooked. The red lion just grew leaves, and more leaves and nothing else. However, due to the performance of the apple blossom I did not give up on the red lion. So this spring I placed both of them out on my front porch (or patio, it's uncovered but raised so I don't know what you'd call that). And man, their leaves are huge, like 2-3 ft.!! They actually look interesting without the flowers. But arrghh! Oklahoma is sooo windy! One day I got back form work and I saw the appleblossom on the ground and it's pot broken and I freaked out. It doesn't seem that it faced it though, it's broke some of the leaves, but it's doing okay and putting out more (this is like the second time it happened to that one).

A few days ago I also saw the red lion blown over, and it's leaves got bent. It's sending out a few new leaves again. So, I'm still biding my time and holding hope that it will eventually bloom, but I'm just letting it do it's thing.

One thing I learnt though was to not plant the bulbs in the plastic pots they come in, those leaves are basically windsails and they will just keep blowing over. I'm using clay pots now. I'll repot the red lion after it goes dormant and ready to come out again.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2006 at 11:17AM
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owlz

I received a "bulb in a box" kit for christmas once as well. It grew leaves but didn't bloom either. The growing instructions weren't that bad, but, I couldn't provide good conditions: daily highs of 55-65F and a ceiling light fixed with a 23W CF. It promptly went back into hybernation and started leaves again a few months later, but, still no blooms. This was my bedroom and the best conditions in the house. However, after reading around online I realized that the pot and substrate that came with it probably weren't very good for it. The pot, for one, had no drainage holes and the substrate, for second, held so much moisture next to the bulb that when I repotted it I couldn't touch any part of bulb that was below the soil line without flesh sliding right off, yuck )-: Now its in a larger clay pot with a good sterilized potting soil cut with pumice that has a bulb fertilizer mix I added as per instructions (4-6-4 and active soil microbes). So now I'm just giving it a nice long veg. state in the hopes that when I next cycle it I'll get some good blooms and maybe a sturdy bulbet for a friend who gave me some prolific hoya cuttings. A few more details; the bulb was labled as white giant, and the re-pot supplies were around $12.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2006 at 1:00PM
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