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Alstromeria

Posted by luv2gro z3a AB (My Page) on
Fri, Mar 10, 06 at 14:30

After a request, I thought I would start a separate thread devoted to alstromeria. You will see it in select greenhouses shortly and it is such a lovely plant. I bought mine in a greenhouse just outside of Beaumont and it does seem that not all the greenhouses carry them. Also, if you see them and want one, buy it. Do not hesitate or it will be gone. They are out of them, usually, in a matter of days, sometimes hours. Mine are going into their 3rd year and are sprouting quite nicely now. Being fairly expensive, it is nice to know that we can easily overwinter them and divide them.

I bought 2 - 10" pots of them 3 years ago for about $12 each. Mine were sold under the name "Princess Lilies" (website below) and are supposed to be the 'Sara' variety. You will see, if you compare the website pics vs. my pics, that mine are not so yellow as theirs and more of a peachy, pink. But, I love them very much just the way they are. I brought them home and immediately transplanted them into 16" deck pots. One, I divided - the other, I just potted straight in. I didn't notice too much difference between them, either way. They put on a fair show that year but it gets better . . .

I didn't get them in at first hard frost in October and I thought I had lost them. But, DH brought them downstairs for me and we forgot about them. In late Nov., early Dec., I happened to notice them sprouting and flowering. But, everything was albino white - no colour. Whoops . . . guess these need some light. Brought them upstairs and left them in my kitchen for a day or two. My dear, sweet (rotten) cats decided that they made a really nice toilette and dirt bath. Again, I thought they were goners. I got new potting soil and started to repot them. Lo and behold, the tubers they had developed were massive and in great quantity. No visible difference, really, between the earlier divided one and the other - except that the spread was a bit better on the one that had been split. So last year, I just trimmed the tubers back, repotted them and then called the greenhouse where I bought them. They told me, seeing as it was still so early, to just pull up the white sprouts until green shoots started to appear and then pull about a third of them until you can't keep up with it anymore, at which time, just let it go on its own. The show they put on last year was spectacular and lasted all season. They were budding when I put them out in May and flowered right up to freezeup.
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2005 'Sara'

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Close-up of 'Sara'

This past year, I brought them in, left the foliage on to dry, pulled it off when it was dry and piled the dry foliage on top of the pots. They didn't prematurely sprout. I repotted them about two weeks ago and they are now sending up nice green shoots. And I managed to get two new pots going.

The tubers are quite fragile and both years have absolutely filled the 16" pots with tubers and roots. But, I'm really finding them pretty easy to keep. They just go down into my unfinished basement - not hot, but not really cold, either.

I have them on my west facing deck and they seem to do very well in the afternoon sun. Mostly, they get just rainwater, but if really dry, I water them. I haven't ever fertilized them.

Let me know if you have any other questions on them and I'll try to answer or we can go to the supplier in the Netherlands and find out. I'm not sure if I can successfully get seed off of them, yet. I watched last year, but wasn't positive that it was seed and wanted to do my own trials on it first. Hope this helps.

Shauna

Here is a link that might be useful: Princess Lilies


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Alstromeria

Thanks Shauna, that's really encouraging! The variety I picked up was 'Camilla' for myself and 'Oxana' for a friend, so hopefully by the fall, we'll be able to divide them and each have a different variety.

The link was informative too. I guess my little one will have to go into a LARGE pot for it to be happy. The roots are starting to come out of the bottom of the pot already, so that'll be my afternoon job for today.

So when the greenhouse told you to pull a third of the shoots off, does that mean to pull the entire shoot from the tuber or to cut the shoot down by a third?

The plants I got were not in bloom and don't have any buds yet, but when they do flower, I'll be sure to post pix.

Laurie


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RE: Alstromeria

Those are both such pretty ones, Laurie. I almost bought 'Oxana' last spring but decided to wait one more year to make sure that I wasn't just "lucky" overwintering them.

I wouldn't be pulling any shoots off now, if you bought them at the greenhouse already. They should be raring to go. Just when you start to see the shoots again after winter storage. And, yes, it does mean pull the entire shoot up, of course without pulling the plant out of the pot. They will pull up very easily but I usually put two fingers on the soil at the base of the shoot and gently pull straight up with my other hand.

BTW, I notice on the website that they refer to them as rhizomous but I think it is more a tuber. ???? Also, looking at the website, I should probably give mine a shot of fertilizer now that they are sprouting. They are a bit later than last year, but I sort of did that on purpose, too, considering how early they started last year. They'll be strong and lush by May, anyway.

I spread my "tuber" system out, like iris roots or asparagus crowns and then cover with about 2" of soil. Also, I store mine right in their pots and then repot in late Jan., early Feb.

Sharon, did I see that you were starting some from seed? You'll have to keep us posted on how they are doing. Judging by the way they fill the pot every year, it won't be long before you have big, healthy plants. If you read the website under consumer info., it says they are mildly winter hardy. They should be good for the pumphouse that you have - it stays above freezing, right?

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

Shauna,

I also picked up some alstromeria to grow on my west facing deck this summer. Here, in Brandon, the only greenhouse that has some is the Greenspot. I phoned all around Brandon to all the greenhouses and even to Portage La Prairie, to Jeffries and they do not carry them.

I bought Camilla (a white one), Zsa Zsa (a light pink one) and Angela (a yellow one). I have yet to divide mine...they are in 5" pots, but the roots are coming out of the bottom also, just like Laurie's were. Here at the Greenspot they are $9.99 each. And... very shortly will be planted into larger pots and then of course the price will go up.

When I googled alstromeria the other day...one site said that the reason that alstromeria blooms for so long is that the seeds are sterile. Maybe that is why you have not found any seeds Shauna.

Question for you Shauna...were the alstromeria, when in your unfinished basement in the dark or not? I have a "pit" under the basement where I keep all the potatoes, carrots, beets, begonias, cannas, dahlias, callas, my brug...etc. I was wondering if that may be a spot I could put them for the winter. It is dark and cool in the "pit". When I googled alstromeria the images of the roots looked like dahlia roots.

What do you think?

Brenda (valleyrimgirl)


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Thanks, Brenda, for the input on the seeds. I wondered if they might be sterile. Many, many of the "pods" fell into the pots when I brought them in and let the foliage dry up. Nothing has sprouted from these pods.

Generally speaking, my pots are kept in the dark. No particular place in my basement - wherever I can find 4 square feet of floor space - usually something that seems to be at a premium in our household. LOL. And the only time there is light is if someone leaves it on or the constant "gray" light in an unfinished basement from the windows. Your pit sounds ideal.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

I wonder if it's only the new hybrids that are sterile? I read somewhere that there's a variety that's native to the southern states that's considered to be quite the weed.

Now why can't we have such pretty weeds up north? ;o)

Brenda, do you know if this is the first year that the Greenspot's brought them in? Or have we just missed them other years?

Laurie


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RE: Alstromeria

Laurie, I was talking to one of my friends who works there and she said that they did have the alstromeria last year, but whether they had them other years also I do not know.

Shauna, thanks for the vote of confidence for my pit as a storage area. I have lots and lots of storage area down there and usually leave all the cannas, begonias, callas etc in their pots all winter and bring them out of the pit about this time of the year to start them again. There would be lots of room there for 3 more pots.

Brenda


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RE: Alstromeria

Shauna, how we have missed your essays! LOL. Remember the good ol' School Days?

Thank you all 3 for the info and I will keep an eye out for them in Winnipeg. I remember admiring Shauna's pics last summer.


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RE: Alstromeria

Thanks for all your tips Shauna!

I've never grown them before so therefore I have 2 Ligtu on order from Botanus!

I will most likely plant mine in pots and bring them indoors too for the winter like you suggested!

Yes, me too Marcia, how I miss those lessons Shauna were teaching us last spring ;)

Sharon

Here is a link that might be useful: Ligtu


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RE: Alstromeria

Wow Sharon, that's an awesome price for 'Ligtu'! Now how did I miss those in the catalogue? I must be slipping.........


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RE: Alstromeria

Does anyone know how full the Ligtu alstromeria gets? They are suppose to be 32" tall but, how "fat"? The Princess Lilies like in Sara in Shauna's pictures look very full in appearance, but are only suppose to be 12 inches high. The prices are great though...maybe next year...see if I can keep the ones I bought this year alive first.

Brenda


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RE: Alstromeria

Yes, I do believe that we are talking two different cultivars between 'Sara', etc. and Sharon's 'Ligtu'. The Princess lilies are a compact, dwarf-type and the 'Ligtu' is a taller variety. The flowers look very similar. Equally as pretty, but the usage in the flower bed would be different. I think 'Ligtu' is more the type used by the florists because it has a nice, long stem. The Princess lilies have very short stems. I would think, because the basal growth should be similar, that 'Ligtu' could bush out quite a bit at the bottom. But the flowering stalks will be longer and appear to extend quite high above the bottom growth.

For anyone new who doesn't know what we are talking about, I did a weekly synopsis last spring of my Master Gardener course that I was taking. However, I didn't finish posting all of the lectures, despite my promises to do so. Unfortunately, life got in the way. I may surprise you yet, with some more. I am glad that everyone enjoyed them so much, though.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

Hi! I just love when the group of you girls get chatting! I am learning alot from you! Last year in July our local Canadian Tire brought in Alstromeria in hanging basket pots. I love new plants so I made a note of what it was. I was tempted to buy one but since it wasn't winter hardy I decided to pass. Thanks to you guys I will be buying one this year if I can find one. Hope the price comes down a little. It really is a pretty plant! Thank! Crazy.


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RE: Alstromeria

Hi! Oh no. Another must have plant. I have been checking to see where I can find it locally and found a greenhouse that will be getting them in towards the end of April. They told me to e-mail them later and they will save me some. I did add to my order from Botanus as well. These ones will probably go into the garden by my roses and then I'll lift them in fall. I've spent way too much on plants this year already. And the greenhouse season hasn't even started.


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RE: Alstromeria

Do you keep your princess lilies soil moist or did you keep them on the dry side? I just got some from Dutch Growers in Saskatoon. They are prettier than the pictures.


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RE: Alstromeria

I received my Ligtu that I order from Botanus the other day, but for some reason they only had 1 root in the bag instead of 2. LOL, I phoned and they're sending out another one asap. I just hope they will root now since it was kind of small ;)

Sharon


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RE: Alstromeria

Sharon, I must of got yours. My Ligtu alstroemeria from Botanus had 3. But when I opened the bag of my Lutea alstromeria ( the yellow ones), I found....peat moss. I'm going to e-mail them. I agree the roots seem kind of small. But then I don't know how big they actually get. Everything else from Botanus seems quite good.


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RE: Alstromeria

LOL, you got mine, that's where it went!

I've potted the one that I have and its under the fluorescent lights, so Im hoping life will happen. If they dont sprout in 2-3 weeks, Ill be asking for a credit, but everything else in my order was good ;)

Peggy, Botanus is excellent with customer service, no 100 questions asked they'll get on it right away, such wonderful bunch of ladies working there!

Sharon


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RE: Alstromeria

Botanus sent me out a replacement bag of Lutea Alsrtoemeria. They also sent me a bonus - Dizzy, an oriental lily bulb. What a nice touch.
Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

Sharon, are your alstoemeria starting to grow? I put them each in their own little pot and so far only one has leaves.
Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

Shelley, I replied to your post too last night and thats gone too...grrrr ;(
But, nope, lifeless! I wrote an email to Botanus and they are giving me a credit on my next order. I think I'll buy a full size plant if I ever see one in a nursery.

Sharon


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RE: Alstromeria

Sharon, I seen your post. I'm going to wait a bit yet before I e-mail them. I started digging around and they seem to be just sitting. Maybe they have to sit for a bit to develop growth.


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RE: Alstromeria

Thompson and Morgan carry seeds for Ligtu hybrids and Dr. Salter's hybrids, they require some time in the refridgerator to sprout, which may be why the seeds aren't coming up for you. I have ten or eleven little babies sprouting for me right now, I hope they make it, as when I tried it last year they all died. I think I transplanted them too late or not gently enough.


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RE: Alstromeria

These plants are definately one of my favorite buys this spring. I highly reccomend Princess Lilies.
Two of my three Ligtu have grown. They are small yet and haven't produced any blooms. I'm thinking that I might have to bring them in the house before it freezes and treat them as house plants. For a while anyways.

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Stephanie

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Oxana

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Julietta

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Zavina

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Both Oxanna and Zavina haven't quit blooming since they came home with me. They seem to be a bit more aggressive. I'm hoping that I have luck keeping them over winter.
Shelley


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Shelley, those are just gorgeous!


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Wiping the drool off of my chin!! Those are just fantastic!


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Well, I think Princess Oxana is going to have to join Princess Sara next year. I love that one, Shelley. I didn't get to post a picture of mine this year and now they are starting to fade. They were absolutely full - solid flowers in both 16" pots. They will probably do a second flush of flowers but not quite as prolific as this past one.

My niece came over the other day and now wants me to force them a bit earlier for her June wedding next year. So, if mine fade early this year, I will give them an earlier rest and start them earlier in the winter. Do you think that would work?

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

I don't know Shauna, your the expert on Princess Lilies not me. Honestly, I'm thinking even if you don't let them rest sooner, you should be able to force them to bloom earlier. Alstoemeria comes from much warmer climates than ours and nature puts them to bed late and wakes them up much sooner. What do you think?
Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

WOW, Shelley, those are gorgeous. I saw them in pots at Wal-Mart a year or two ago, but I didn't get them because they weren't hardy, and they were expensive. I didn't realize then that they had tubers you could overwinter. I'll be looking for one (or more) of these next year. Thanks for sharing all the info.


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RE: Alstromeria

Shelley, those are gorgeous! I just may need to get a friend for "Sara" too!

Shauna, the ones I got from you this spring have been going non-stop! They are slowing down now but they have been amazing!

I'm looking forward to seeing how they will do for me in my little storage area in the basement. I did overwinter some geraniums and anemone down there last winter and they survived --- must be OK for alstroemeria then!

Ang


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RE: Alstromeria

Alstoemeria can take a fair bit of frost. We had several nights down to -7 or -8 and they did freeze a bit, but the tops totally haven't frozen off yet. They were still blooming and had tons of buds on. But because of the forecast I brought them in and put them in the basement to go to sleep for a while. One of them had a fair bit of moisture in the soil yet, so I'm leaving that one upstairs until it drys out a bit more.
Does anyone think that this is a necessary to do this or can I leave them in damp soil?

Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

Good question Shelley. Mine's still outside and got rained on last night, so I'd also like to know how dry it should be before I store it? Anyone know?


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RE: Alstromeria

I just bring mine in, with no real regard as to their moisture content and put them, intact in the pots, in the basement for a few months. They don't seem to go moldy and eventually dry out. After I repot them in January, I don't water them until they start to sprout again.

Hope this works for everyone. If you have any other "system" please share and we can all compare notes.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

Thanks Shauna. I guess I'll just bring it in then and hope for the best. :^)


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Thanks Shauna, I'll put them all downstairs. When you repot them in January, I am guessing that you bring them upstairs into the warmth. Do you put them near a window so they have sun? I definately want these plants to grow for me next year. BTW my alstoemeria that I got from Botanus never did bloom. I'm hoping that it is a different story next year. I probably got them too late in the spring because they didn't really start growing until June.
Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

My Princess Lilies never did take a rest. I just kept pulling the shoots off. But all are replanted now. I did divide everyone. The roots filled my pots, so it was quite easy to do so. My Oxanna even wants to start blooming already, but I have pinched the buds off. Silly thing. (My DM Oxanna is budding as well.) After reading this thread again, I see that Shaunna repotted hers a bit earlier. I'm sure that it won't make a difference.
My Litgu Alstomeria did take a break. Now I am just waiting to see if this one had made it. I finally brought it upstairs into the warmth and light.
How is the Alstromeria doing for the rest of you?
Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

Mine are still in my 'pit' with all the other pots of cannas, dahlias, callas, begonias, etc. They do have yellow shoots and have had shoots all winter. I guess in the next few weeks I will need to take them out and start watering and giving them more light. I divided them in half when I purchased them last year so this year I don't think I will need to do so. But I will see what they are like when I bring them out of the 'pit'.

Brenda


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RE: Alstromeria

Mine are still in the basement storage room. I checked on them several times and noticed white shoots on them all winter long. I've been wondering about when to bring them up to the living room and let them get started for the season. I will be doing that pretty soon based on info in this thread! I can't wait to see them get going again!

Ang


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RE: Alstromeria

How's everyone's alstroemeria doing now? I brought mine out of the basement and re-potted it about a week ago. The soil was quite dry and there were no shoots of any kind. But some of the roots seemed to be still fleshy and weren't totally dried out, but I still haven't seen any signs of new shoots appearing. Do you think there's still a chance it'll sprout? It looks so dead right now :(

Laurie


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RE: Alstromeria

I am just new to alstromeria and in keeping it over for the winter. Laurie, could alstromeria be similar to begonias, dahlias and cannas where there is a little sprout on the tip of the crown of the root? I am sure that there is a special name for that but I don't remember it right now. Did yours have anything like that?

I guess I should be getting all that stuff out of my basement shortly also. Cannas, callas, begonias, alstromeria, etc. all need to come out.

Brenda


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RE: Alstromeria

I brought mine up about a week ago (or so) and there is one shoot that is still completely green. So far that's it though. I keep putting my nose to the soil to see if anything else is coming up! LOL Last year when I overwintered anemone I kept thinking it was goners and then all of a sudden there was a itty bitty sign of life! Soooo... I am holding out that alstromeria is the same way? **fingers crossed**

Ang


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RE: Alstromeria

Ang, did you repot them? I've got one of mine repotted and there were tons of new tubers formed. Plus the tubers were all tangled through each other. As soon as I got it repotted and thinned out a bit, it started to sprout within a day. If you have a green shoot, it is very much alive. I take out all of the single tubers but start up new plants with the multiple tubers. Yours are "multiple tuber" babies.

I've got to get the other one repotted tonight. It is loaded with new green shoots, many of which will be gone after I repot it. I don't think they flower as well unless they get some room in the pot. You will be shocked at how many are there. I'm tempted to leave this one alone this year, but the soil level was too low last year and I want to rase it up anyway. Plus, i want these two big pots for my niece's wedding in June.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

Brenda, Alstroemeria has an underground rhizome, which develops vertical shoots, there is a good illustration at the website below.

Shauna, already your plant that you sent me are showing life. Whoooohooo ;)

Sharon

Here is a link that might be useful: Alstroemeria


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Shauna did you say that you had yours potted in 16" pots and the roots filled the pot? Because the roots on my 'Camilla' certainly didn't fill the 16" pot that it was in. In fact, the roots were only a little larger than when I transplanted it. There's still no green showing on mine at all. Maybe it's only this variety that isn't as vigorous as the rest?


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RE: Alstromeria

Give them another year, Laurie. Mine have filled the pot for the last 2 years (totally wrapped around the base of the pot and right down to the bottom). I think that's why I'm being pretty adamant about the repotting. But, I don't think they were quite that aggressive in the first year. I know that I had to repot them, though.

That's great, Sharon, that they are showing sprouts. Those should start to grow pretty fast, now. And thanks for the correction on the tuber vs. rhizome. I saw that website awhile ago and found out it was a rhizome. That seems to be one of the things that I always mix up - what is a rhizome vs. what is a tuber. lol Some MG I am. Time for some much needed review of some basics.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

Shauna, no I haven't repotted them yet but now that I see your explaination of why to repot them I will be doing that very very soon then. I really loved this plant last year and can't wait to see it in its full glory again!

Ang


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I stopped in at my DM yesterday to water her plants. My Alstroemeria is at her place. My have they grown. Oxanna and Zavina are more vigorous than Julietta and Stephanie. This is no different than last year.
I'm just glad to see that they all made it through the winter.

I'm going to be on the look out for different varieties this year. They are such a gorgeous plant when in bloom. It is just too bad that they don't have a nice fragrance.

Shelley


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I'm going to be watching for a new one, too, Shelley. I'm thinking that Ella would look nice sitting pretty with my Sara. They are such a reliable, no fuss container and I like how you have all the different ones. Interesting that some are more vigorous than others.

Shauna


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I think mine's bit the dust. No signs of life.......I think it's time to pull the plug. :(


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WAIT!!!!!! Laurie, don't give up hope yet. My repotted one is just starting to come, too. If the rhizomes were fleshy, they should have life. Wait for another week or so and see what it does.

Shauna


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Good thing that to dump it out means that I'd have to walk through a 3 foot snow drift to get to the compost bin. So it's got until the snow melts......then it's gone! But really, the old stems are dried to a crisp and the crown is kind of going mushy. Not good signs.

I went for a walk through the Greenspot the other day, where I originally got this one, but they don't seem to have any in yet.


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RE: Alstromeria

Laurie,

I phoned the Greenspot this morning. They said that they have 7 different varieties this year. $9.99 each. We would be able to use our Westman Gardener discount of 10% off on them which would bring it down to $8.99ish. They are not quite ready for sale so therefore they were not on the sale floor yet. That is why you did not see them the other day.

Brenda


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Thanks for that info Brenda. Have you checked yours yet to see how they're doing?


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Shauna, I did repot them and WOW what an instant difference! Whoo-hoo! I've now got 3 new containers going from one original container. Sadly, the other container (stored in the same spot) didn't make it. It was definately goners..... BUT I do have 3 new ones going! Yay!


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Wow, those are my grandchildren!!!!!! I'm a grannie!!!!!!! LOL

I end up throwing some out every year that I'm sure would start new plants but I just don't have the pots or the soil to pot them all up. I keep the main plants and the multiple offshoots but I throw out all of the single offshoots. I'm sure that they all have an eye or two that would start up. Most times there is more multiple shoots than I can use. I still haven't got to repotting my second pot. I have to get to it in the next few days. If anyone is in the Edmonton area and wants some, send me a message with contact information. You'll have to come to pick them up and they will be bare root stock. I'm in the deeeeep saaoouuttth of Edmonton.

Shauna


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I just bought an alstromeria last year and it is greening up nicely. I have it in almost full sun.

I have a few questions, I read in a post that you should pull some of the stems, does it matter which ones? Does that make it fuller?

Also, sometimes they fall over a bit is that normal or should I stake them?

Id like more but rarely find in nursery. Is there a good site to order from?

Lastly, how does everyone fertilize, I like organic if possible.....

Thanks...love the pictures everyone. One of my favorites.


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It doesn't really matter which stems you pull, but I tend to do mine evenly throughout the pot. I was told by the greenhouse that I originally purchased mine from that this does make the plant stronger, healthier and better blooming. But, you only do it when the shoots first start to appear in the early spring. castarter, I'd really hate to advise you as to exactly what to do, considering your zonal difference. I am presuming that yours could stay in the ground year round. The plants we grow here are all in pots, which we have to overwinter indoors. If yours are inground, they should spread quite rapidly, considering the rhizome activity that seems evident in the potted plants.

I haven't had any experience with mine falling over. They seem to stay fairly full and compact. Perhaps you have a slightly different variety or we are experiencing quite a zonal behavioral difference in the plant? If they are falling over, I don't see any reason why you couldn't put a low plant ring around them to keep them up.

I don't seem to need to fertilize mine. Perhaps some nice compost tea would give them a bit more intense colour and bigger blooms. Does anyone fertilize theirs? I just checked the website and they said that they should be fertilized as they are heavy feeders, especially in a pot. I'm always a bit of a light feeder. I've killed too many things over the yeas by overfertilizing.

The other suggestion I was going to make to all is that, if you want some, perhaps ask at your favorite reputable garden centre if they could take your name/number to call you when they get them. They do seem to go extremely fast when they arrive. You could try to contact the website that is linked in this thread and see if they can tell you the garden centres in your area that order from them.

Shauna


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I fertilized mine last year just as I did the annuals, once a week. Only one took a break from blooming. The rest kept going and going and going.....

Shelley


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I just put an order in at Botanus for some. Hope it's not too late to start them now. I'd like them in bloom for my wedding this August.


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Which ones did you get from Botanus? I did manage to get Litgu to grow, but it didn't bloom. It shrivelled up to nothing over the winter.


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I think I'm leaving alstromeria to the pros. I give up. I got 2 divisions from Brenda awhile back, and nothing. So that's a total of 3 dead ones for me.....I don't want to be responsible for any more fatalities! :(


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I've been wondering about when to start fertilizing mine? The shoots are getting nice and full now but I'm thinking when we start up plants from seed we don't fertilize right away, so wondering if it's the same with plants started from rhizomes?

Ang


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I should add that they've been getting fish-tank water at least once a week and will be all summer long as well. Is this enough for them do you think??


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RE: Alstromeria

Personally, I'm not going to start fertilizing mine yet. I transplanted mine into new soil so they can wait until it warms up more outside. But once I move them outside they will get a shot.
I've never watered my plants with fish tank water, so I don't know how much it helps.

Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

I've been fertilizing mine, 1/2 strength of 20-20-20 about every 10 days.

Laurie, don't give up, I had one pot that took quite awhile before I seen a sprout. The others are doing great.

I'm wondering if you would get fasters sprouts if you lay the rhizome horizontal instead of buried vertically and just lightly covering with vermiculite or whatever starting mix you have. Maybe try that next time?

Sharon


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RE: Alstromeria

Okay, you guys are just too good at enabling. After all this talk about alstromeria, I just had to check them out at the Green Spot here in Brandon. Can you say WOW??? I managed to restrain myself and only bring one home (Oxana) but they were all drop dead gorgeous.

Thanks, folks. :)

BJ in SW MB


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RE: Alstromeria

The order form listed it as "Alstroemeria 'Ligtu hybrid". They all seemed to have the same name, but some were yellow and some red. I liked the look of the red one.


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RE: Alstromeria

I think that maybe I'll keep up with the fishtank water for now. Our tank has live plants in there and I give it fertilizer from time to time. Probably once it goes outside I'll give it fertilizer along with the rest of the plants and keep the tank water for my houseplants!


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RE: Alstromeria

Sharon, I checked my calendar and it's been about 6 weeks since I planted my first(original) rhizome, and there's still nothing. It's been about 3 weeks since I planted the ones from Brenda and nothing either......soooooo when I happened to be in the Greenspot yesterday, 'Oxana' jumped into my hands and begged to be taken home!lol They were in full bloom and simply spectacular, and like BJ said they were "WOW"! So how could I say no? ;^)

Since Shelley claims that Oxana is more vigorous than some others, maybe I'll have better luck with that one. Time will tell if I can over-winter this one any better.


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RE: Alstromeria

May I introduce all of you to Princess Isabella? She and her twin, also named Isabella, jumped into my arms yesterday at Arch greenhouse in Edmonton. I think they will look pretty nice with my Sara.

They've got lots of them right now at Arch, for anyone interested in the Edmonton area. They're priced at $15 for a 6" pot. A bit steep to what Brenda found at Greenspot. How big a pot did you get, Brenda? If anyone sees them at a better price than this, let us know.

Gee, we keep this up and we're going to have every colour between all of us. Anyone interested in setting up trades next spring?

Shauna

Here is a link that might be useful: Princess Isabella


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RE: Alstromeria

I'll trade Shauna. I divided all of mine this spring and gave them away to local family and friends. I paid $20 each for mine last spring. So you still got a deal.
Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

Sounds great, Shelley. I think I paid about $8 to send some to Sharon, about a 2 hour drive away, and about $12 to send it to Marcia in Ont. Is that right, gals? I just erased my e-mails on that today. Anyway, sending them to each other is probably alot cheaper than buying them.

I'll put my name in for Oxanna and Zevina. And I'll easily be able to send out Sara and Isabella. The Isabella pots have about a dozen healthy sprouts in each. Should be lots next year. If it is the same as this year, I should have about 8 trades, 4 of each. But, I guess I shouldn't be putting the cart before the horse, eh?

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

Shauna, i cringe when i think what you spent to send them to me. Especially since i seem to have killed them.... :`( I'm so sorry. I think my house is too dry for some things. Even though i watered them well when they were planted, they seem to have dried out. I even searched around catalogues to see if i could replace them and pretend - but i couldn't find "Sara" anywhere. So now i have to confess. I'll have to send you a whole lot of something to make up for it!!


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RE: Alstromeria

Yes Shauna, it was about $8 postage just to send 2 hours away, but all 4 pots that I started are doing wonderful! I can't wait for them to bloom.

I'll be looking hard to see if any of the nurseries around here will be selling them, hopefully I can get on the trade train with you gals next spring.

Sharon


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RE: Alstromeria

That's OK, Marcia, you don't have to send me anything. It was good to try it. Are you sure they're dead though? Did you empty the pot out? They may just not have started yet. Sometimes they may stall a bit. Obviously, though, if the roots are hollow and dry, there's nothing left. Maybe that they froze drastically in the package on the way there. Honest, it's okay. Nothing's changed. : )

I've put mine outside, even though we're getting sleety snow right now. My dear kitty decided that the large pots looked alot like a litter box again so I had to move them. It was so nice out that I put them all outside. How silly not to have looked at the forecast. But, they can tolerate a few degrees of frost, so they all should be fine. It's supposed to hover around +1 or so as lows for the next few days. I've been tossing towels over them at night. And now that they are outside, I want to leave them there.

Sharon, I'm glad to hear that you got 4 pots out of them. That should give them plenty of space to get a good system going below the soil.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

It is a deal Shauna. I see that you have put yours outside already. Then I should bring mine home and start to harden them off. The 2 that I repotted earlier-Julietta and Zavina have filled the 16" pots with shoots already. They are going to be so full this year. Can wait for the blooms.

Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

Yes, Shauna, i checked the roots and they were all hollow. My cannas died this winter too. Last year, they wouldn't stop growing, and this year the bulbs dried right out. Of course, it's the time i "owe" someone else some bulbs - she gave me some yellow cannas last fall. Speaking of which, i have to find them.... :)


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RE: Alstromeria

I found a new one today. Sara. It isn't the same colouring as yours Shauna. Have a look.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

They were $20 again in a 6" pot. But I think that they are smaller than last year.
I wonder if yours was labeled right. It looks somewhat like my Zavina, but yet it is different.

Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

Shelley, I'm thinking that you may be correct, but I haven't found mine on the website, either. I saw Sara in bloom at the greenhouse that I just bought Isabella at and it looked very much like yours. How about for now we call mine Princess Shauna, just among us friends? LOL My brothers always tell me that I'm a "princess". In the meantime, I'll send my picture to Holland and see if they can identify it for me. Thanks, Shelley. I've made a few references to the color of mine being different. I probably should have sent it to them before for clarification. Ang, Sharon and Jocelyn, I'll get to the bottom of this yet.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

Now I am wondering?? Kind of looks like mine as well. Although my tag shows the same colouring as my plant.

Here is a link that might be useful: Dianella


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RE: Alstromeria

I haven't gotten an email to say my order has been shipped from Botanus, but I just checked my Visa and see that they charged it on April 13th. Hopefully that means that they are on the way.
Joan


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RE: Alstromeria

Joan, don't worry they will be coming. They usually bill earlier than they send. You most likely ordered later than some of the rest of us. I had also requested to send as early as possible. Weather permitting.

Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

I thought I would post part of an email that I sent. It was an observation when I replanted my Princess lilies.
One thing that I did notice and whether it makes any difference, I can't say. I had my 4 Princess lilies in dark Grey pots. My mother had hers in a black pot. My Lutea was in a white pot. The root system on my mothers Oxanna was massive compared to mine. (she neglected hers while I babied mine and they were both bought at the same time.) My Lutea from Botanus I did find one tuber in to re pot. (I just re potted this lonely thing) All of the pots were roughly the same size. And they were all kept in the same area for the winter. I'm wondering being that this is a tropical plant that it likes the heat from the darker pots.????

What colour pot did you grow yours in? I want to know if it made a difference.

Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

Mine are in large, white patio pots. But, it certainly is a valid theory. I'll plant my Isabella's into darker pots and see what happens next spring.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

Here is the reply from Royal Van Zanten regarding my inquiry of identifying my Sara alstromeria. Interesting, but now we know for sure.

Hello,
I just like to confirm the variety in the picture in fact is Sara.

Though it is true that in different climates, colours do come out a bit different, so some variance is possible.

Regards,

Andr Vreugdenhil

Royal Van Zanten
Andr Vreugdenhil
Commercial Manager

Maybe yours will revert to the same as mine Shelley. We can informally say that it is the Far North Sara.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

I don't know, I was kind of hoping we would call it Princess Shauna ;)

But I guess to be official wed better keep the initial name, you know how some of us are so anal when it comes to names ;)

Sharon


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RE: Alstromeria

Princess Shauna works for me! ;^)

Thanks for the info Shauna and I'll keep the name Sara with my records just in case I need it some day, ya just never know! ;^)

Ang


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RE: Alstromeria

Ok, girls my order is here. 3 have little white sprouts and one has none. Not sure if the white things are roots and should be planted down or if they are flower stems and they should be planted up. Maybe just plant horizontally and they'll find their way up on their own . Any advise appreciated.


 o
RE: Alstromeria

In answer to your question on what color pots to plant in and also why leaves and no flowers, I found this info:
"If the soil temperature rises too high (above about 22 degrees Celsius) the alstroemeria plant puts its effort into producing more large tuberous roots at the expense of flowering shoots. With some varieties this can lead to production of exclusively blind non flowering stems and no flowers. This is presumably a defence mechanism of the plant to store food and water in its roots in preparation for an impending drought.
This can be important for the gardener and is a good reason to use a mulch and to plant where the roots are in the shade. Pots or tubs can heat up much more quickly than the open ground so be careful to ensure that they don't spend all day in the full sun."


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RE: Alstromeria

I have a few stems growing, and have read in earlier posts here about pulling the first stems off. They are growing quite slowly, only 5 shoots so far. How long should I keep pulling off stems, and should I fertilize now or later please.


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RE: Alstromeria

Mine have been outside the last few weeks. I fertilize weekly.
I haven't pulled off any stems since I re potted mine.

Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

Definitely the time to stop pulling off stems. Just leave them for the rest of the year. I've also had mine out for a couple of weeks now. But, they seem to have stalled quite a bit this year, with this cooler spring. Once it warms up, they should just take right off.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

I'm so thrilled to find this thread! I worked in a garden in Big Sur, CA with the tall variety and fell in love. They are practically a weed there -- a glorious happy weed that just keeps on blooming! Now, I buy the cut flowers every two weeks at Trader Joes.

Just found and bought my first Princess version and am hoping to winter it over in Wisconsin. Your posts make me think I might be able to pull it off.

Oh dear .... I'm feeling the urge to go get another ....

Thank you, thank you!

Martha


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RE: Alstromeria

A warm welcome to the FN forum, Martha. You should easily be able to overwinter them in Wisconsin. Which beauty did you get? And by all means, go and get another. (I'm such an enabler. Careful, there's quite a few of us on this forum. lol)

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

Shauna, finally I'm getting some blooms!

Mine is more of a yellow than yours....maybe I'll get pink shades down the road too?


'Sara'

Sharon


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RE: Alstromeria

You're right, Sharon. They are quite different, aren't they? But, maybe it's the climatic change between Wainwright and Edmonton? Yours look more like the picture of 'Sara' on the Princess Lilies website.

My new 'Isabella' have just bloomed in the last few days, too. But, I'm still waiting for my 'Sara' pots to bloom. This year, they seem really, really slow. I think the cool spring has not been good for mine. Plus, I probably had them outside just a tad too early.

Enjoy the show they put on for us, everyone. Now that they're blooming, they should be pretty much non-stop for a couple of months, anyway.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

So, how many of you are bringing in your alstromeria in, to overwinter in the house?

Who is going to grow them as a houseplants?

Who is going to put them into the basement, discontinue watering them and bring them out in Feb/Mar to start again?

I have 2 (Oxana and Theresa) and will be growing them as houseplants in my sunroom for the winter. I tried the cold storage method last year and they dried out too much.

Brenda


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RE: Alstromeria

Who is going to put them into the basement, discontinue watering them and bring them out in Feb/Mar to start again?
I'll be doing this method, I have 2 pots of 'Sara' stored in a dark cool room.

Sharon


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RE: Alstromeria

Should the foliage be cut back before putting them in the basement or let die back please.


 o
RE: Alstromeria

I cut mine back to about 6".


 o
RE: Alstromeria

Last year, I let the frost take the green on the plants for the most part before I put them into my DM dark rumpus room. They never really stopped growing. This fall I divided some of mine for trades and will be trying to grow these in one gallon pots under lights. The others, I am going to do the same with as I did last fall.

Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

This is a wonderful thread. Thanks to all of you for the information on growing alstromeria. We have only enjoyed them as cut flowers until now, but we thought we would try to grow them next year. We live in Stevensville in western Montana which is probably USDA zone 4 and Sunset zone 1. We've had good success with dahlias although they must be dug up and stored over the winter. I had thought we could do the same with the alstromeria, but after reading all of your postings, it sounds like they must be treated more like geraniums here and kept in pots.

Unfortunately, I have not been able to find any growers in the US from whom to order the tubers. If anyone has found a US grower, I'd appreciate the name or the link.

Continued good luck with your beautiful plants.

Susan


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RE: Alstromeria

Mine are still blooming their fool heads off in Wisconsin ... in November. Can we say "climate change?" We've had enough frost to kill back the zinnias and startle to nasturtiums, but it hasn't bothered the alstromeria. I can't stand to put them in the basement until they show some signs of distress. Should I just DO it???


 o
RE: Alstromeria

woost2, I just brought my pots in last week, too, in "sunny" Edmonton. I just started to divide my big pots and repot them. They've started sprouting again since I brought them in. That's a first for me. Anyway, I've received Shelley's trades and am dividing up a trade for her. I've just got into my first big pot of 'Isabella' and easily got a big piece for you, Shelley. The balance, I have divided into 4 pieces and will now spread around the pot.

I didn't divide either of my 'Isabella' pots when I bought them last spring. I just transplanted them. They are in slightly large patio pots (16" tapering up to 18" ) than my 'Sara's' and at least this first one doesn't seem to be quite as prolific a root system. But, it still has quadrupled in size since the spring. If the second pot is the same, I won't be doing any more trades on them this year, unfortunately. There should be ample though for next year. Seems to me that 'Sara' needed two seasons, too, before I had so much excess. I'll let you know tonight or tomorrow how much 'Sara' there is. Silly me. I forgot to bring my potting soil in last night and it's frozen solid already. It'll be tonight at the earliest that I can pot them up and I've got the four big pots and Shelley's 3 to do. Wow, getting to be a big job but definitely a worthwhile one.

I'm thinking of doing a mixed pot and seeing what results. This year, I'll just do 'Sara' and 'Isabella' together. Whatcha think? Next year, hopefully, I'll do a pot of 'Sara', 'Isabella, 'Stephanie', 'Oxana' and 'Zavina'. Might look like a very pretty dog's breakfast though.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

OK... I put my large pot of Sara in a dark corner of the basement and ignored it until now. I have one smaller pot I've kept under lights as well.

The big one is putting up the ghosty sprouts. I yanked them all until yesterday and have now put the pot out where it gets a bit of window light and some castoff from the tube lights. I can put it on the table under the full lights, but figured I'd easy it into the light.

I'm wondering if I should pot it up, repot it in the same pot (which is big and heavy as I want to carry up and down the basement steps) or leave it another year? Assuming it actually survives ...

The little one I will pot up. I bought it late in the season and never got around to repotting it. Bad me.


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RE: Alstromeria

I have repotted mine in the spring. Or about now. I always think that the new dirt will make them bloom better.

Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

Totally agree, Shelley. I would pot it up now and divide them a bit. That always helps, too. If you've got a big pot that produced well the summer before, you should have lots to divide to spread around the pot. Be prepared to do up another big pot's worth.

Shauna


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RE: Alstromeria

I finally finished re potting all of mine and then hauled the last lot to my mothers house. (She's gone...off to Kelowna for the winter again). The ones that I replanted a couple weeks ago look great already.
Out of all the ones that I have...Sara seems to be the slowest. No extra divisions were taken off that one this year.

I also did like you were planning on doing Shauna. I did up a mixed smaller pot of Oxanna and Zavina. I'm kind of anxious to see how it looks.

Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

I haven't had any luck with the nurseries around here in getting any. They tell me they don't carry them because they stop flowering here once it gets too hot. Maybe the humidy has something to do with it. I told her I'd take my chances if I could get some, but that didn't help either, their suppliers don't offer them she said. What time of the year do the nurseries in your area carry them potted up? Wonder how much the shipping would be for one potted and in bloom already. My Calgary daughter is probably coming home the 2nd week of March. Probably too early to have them out yet. Going in hospital Feb 20th (4 more sleeps) for my hip replacement. Would be a nice get well surprise, don't you think?


 o
RE: Alstromeria

Does NB get hotter than Wisconsin? My first attempt did terrific in full southern sun in Madison. I had it in a large, heavy clay pot and it bloomed its fool head off until I finally brought it in, mid-November. The first place I ever saw these short varieties for sale was in Rochester, Minnesota at a grocery store! It gets hot and humid there, too. I had just come from a visit to Big Sur, CA where I had fallen in love with the taller variety (they are virtually weeds in Big Sur) and was so surprised to see them.


 o
RE: Alstromeria

I have to say that mine enjoy the heat. I have them in full sun all day in a protected part of the yard. Last year it turned cooler and rainy for the latter part of the summer. They slowed down during time.
They sell like hot cakes locally here. If you do not grab.. then they are gone.
They might have been looking for an excuse to not carry them.

Shelley


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RE: Alstromeria

I've tried emailing a couple of the Calgary Garden Centres over the weekend, but no responses yet. My daughter said she'd check areas for me, but she was moving again on the weedend, and probably hasn't had time yet. Well tomorrow's the day. Probably won't be posting for a bit. Maybe I'll have a nice surprise when she comes home 2nd week of March.


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RE: Alstromeria

Good luck, bloomorelse. My sister-in-law is getting her hip done this spring as well - she's been walking with no hip joint (congenital) for 55 years, and it's really starting to slow down her gardening. Hopefully you'll both be back on your feet and back in the garden in time to enjoy the summer.
Connie


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RE: Alstromeria

Thanks Connie. I've only heard good things of people who've had it done. May not be able to move established plants around this summer, but I should be able to get down to weed and plant with a small shovel. The key is to do the exercises and a lot of walking once I feel a little better.

Hope to be back here dreaming of Spring soon.

Joan


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RE: Alstromeria

Has anyone ever tried these from seeds? I added some to my most recent seed order to try them out. The germination method sounds a little tricky, warm, cold, and warm again.


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RE: Alstromeria

I've got blooms! My first attempt at wintering over in the basement seems to have worked. I put one in a dark corner and kept a second under lights. They appear identical in their growth and flowering at the moment. I did pot up the one under lights (it was in its original nursery pot) but not the one in the dark. Will try dividing this fall, should we survive the summer.

We've had an oddball spring for southern Wisconsin. No real heat and nights in the 30s even this week. Temps not bothering the Alstros. But germination is the pits in the veggie garden.


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RE: Alstromeria

To all of you Alstro fanatics - I LOVED all the info on this thread. I'm just getting ready to overwinter my first plants. Are they happier divided in Fall before allowing to dry and rest or in early Spring when you wake them up? And have any of you tried cross pollinating varieties and growing from seed?


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RE: Alstromeria

I tried seed and not a single sprout.


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