Wintering an Amaryllis Bulb

gamapat(3)October 19, 2010

I live in northern WI. I had an amaryllis bulb in the garden this summer that produced a beautiful flower. I would like to keep it for a winter indoor plant or at least be able to plant it next spring. Anyone there that knows what to do with the bulb, I would appreciate your input.

The funny thing is I was given this bulb last Christmas and it wouldn't bloom so in disgust I threw it out the back door. Apparently in the spring a squirrel planted it under a tree and low and behold one day I had this great red bloom. I have dug it and cut the leaves back, the bulb looks very healthy, so now what do I do?

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kaboehm (zone 9a, TX USA)

Hi!! Northern WI...brrrrr....bulb needs to overwinter somewhere cool, but not ICY!!

If it had a nice spring and summer, you just might be able to coax some blooms out of it sooner rather than later.

You can try this:
Store the bulb somewhere cool (not colder than 45 degrees) for the next 6-8 weeks; typically this is in the garage, cellar, or even an unheated exterior closet. Let it rest...then pot it up in some fresh soil. Give the bulb a good watering and place the pot in a sunny warm spot and you will see growth. It might surprise you with blooms after the rest, or you might have to wait til spring for the blooms. Let the soil dry out between don't want to lose all your hard work to rot!

Under the best of growing conditions, the bulbs that we get are prechilled and ready to bloom. That's what the cool rest does for many of our bulbs each winter...and as soon as they are put back into the warmth (inside) they spring back to life.

Now...I have to ask...did you let the leaves die back or did you cut them off?! Topic of current debate and most agree that letting the leaves die back or at least whither and yellow is best for the bulb. Cutting back healthy green leaves prior to the winter MAY (not necessarily) delay the bloom.

Do keep us posted!! GREAT JOB!!...but only 1 amaryllis?! :-) stick with us and next year you'll have 10!
CHAD is very contagious!
Kristi (in Spring, TX)

    Bookmark   October 19, 2010 at 2:54PM
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What does Chad stand for I'm sure it's some kind of gotta have em all syndrome. I have that with amorphophallus. But what is the actual acronym?

    Bookmark   October 20, 2010 at 12:10AM
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What is CHAD: Compulsive Hippeastrum Acquisition Disorder

Many of us have this in the chronic form! The more the merrier.


    Bookmark   October 20, 2010 at 8:24PM
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anna_in_quebec(z4 QC)

That's right! And the H can stand simply for "horticultural" - amaryllis, dahlias, daylilies, all manner of perennials, etc etc. I am afflicted badly!

    Bookmark   October 21, 2010 at 3:05PM
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Thanks for your input. I did cut the leaves off before I read all the debate on the subject. I also put the bulb in the refrigerator. Guess that may be too cold for it. I just bought a nice bulb at Menards and have it growing in the window. The directions say to water it everyday, but I am guessing that will be too much. We haven't had sun for a week to dry the soil out. As you can see I am new to all this. I had no idea I could grow these outside in the summer! Thanks

    Bookmark   October 28, 2010 at 10:47AM
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