Bulk bulbs...into the fridge?

kaboehm (zone 9a, TX USA)September 21, 2010

I just got 25 pounds of amaryllis bulbs from BB. I am giving a talk to 2 garden clubs next month (10/14 - "How to get the most out of your amaryllis bulbs through the holidays and beyond") and wanted to have some bulbs on hand in case anyone wanted to buy at the talk at a very reasonable price. Ordered 25 each of Alfresco, Fanfare, Bellismo, and Baby Doll...different than "box store" bulbs. SO...cleaned out the garage fridge (no food in it at all except beer, and that's not "really" a food).

Think they'll be good in their mesh bags for a few weeks? I was thinking I might pull out a few of each and do a group planting for the ooooo and aaaaa factor. I don't usually store hippis in the fridge, so any advice is appreciated!



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A while back I tried this with a few one being papilio and they all turned to mush, I'm not sure if mine was just too cold? I've heard that it's okay as long as their not stored with apples! I'm too scared to do it again but I think as long as your fridge isn't too cold you'll be fine :)

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 7:34PM
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ryan820(z5b Denver, Colorado, USA)

Hi Kristi!

I'm no expert but it sounds right what you're doing. So long as they aren't in dank, still air, they should be fine. I have heard of people storing bulbs in paper bags loosely closed (like rolling the top) and thats it. Of course, you might want to test this fridge with a thermometer for a few days to be sure.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 7:35PM
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Kristi, if you do this get a thermometer that you know is good and adjust your refridgerator to 55 Fah., before you put the bulbs in.Use sheets of styrofoam, or bags made of plastic netting to prevent the bulbs from touching the inside walls of the refridgerator. There are defrost heating coils in the walls of a frost free refridgerator. Also the walls can be localy below freezing because of the refridgerant lines inside the walls. Both will cause rot if not bulb death.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 7:53PM
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I read that they shouldn't be stored under 50 as it could promote cell death and rot as Del suggested. Maybe a cool basement or a cool closet? You need somewhere cool enough to delay growth tho :(

Either way, please inform us of the outcome and what you decide :)

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 8:03PM
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kaboehm (zone 9a, TX USA)

Thanks for all the advice. I am hopeful that it's just a few weeks and should be fine. I am storing the bulbs in their mesh bags sitting loosely in an open cardboard box ith a very loose lid open, with good air circulation... sitting in the middle of the shelf so they don't touch the walls. I had checked previously and it was 55 exactly. It's only 3 weeks and the bulbs aren't jammed in together tightly. TONS of fresh root!! These should all really take off! The Alfrescos really look dormant. For a mini (they say) the bulbs look huge! Lots of Fanfare scapes showing so I took some out to start for visual aids! Whatever people don't buy (at a little over $3/bulb I don't think they'll sit). Maybe I'll do 3 for $10 so I don't have to mess with change...and even come out ahead a little!! I'll give away to people at the office or local friends. I am also doing door prizes at the talk to "stimulate" sales!! I think the bill for 100 bulbs was $225 including shipping. Small price to pay to get 30 more addicted!!

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 8:06PM
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kaboehm (zone 9a, TX USA)

Uh...Josh....I'm in Houston...cellars/basements...where?! :-)The fridge will do. As everyone knows on the list, I'm a stickler for details, so won't freeze them. Just want them to sleeeeep for a couple of weeks! (all y'all recall the "hot water" treatment that was tweaked for 3 days to get temperature exact for Gordie's "surgery").

Outside temps = 90, inside = 78. The fridge is the only option. Too many to put in the little mini fridge that's used exclusively for bulbs.


    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 8:11PM
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OOH, 78 inside, I couldn't handle that :) Indiana has been entirely too hot this year for me to handle! Anytime I go down south it is almost impossible to get cold water to come out of the tap, drives me crazy! :)

If your fridge is 55 then you should be more than fine : )

    Bookmark   September 21, 2010 at 8:34PM
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For three consecutive years, I stored bulbs (wrapped in newspaper) in the vegetable compartment of the fridge to force them to bloom. They would stay in there for 8 weeks and when I took them out, they were ok - dry on the outside skin but fresh and after I planted them for a few weeks, they would send up scapes.

Please let us know how the bulbs fare in your fridge.

Thank you.


    Bookmark   September 23, 2010 at 2:03AM
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