This time of year giving an Amaryllis grow kit has become a popular holiday gift. These flowers add great beauty to any home. They are also a great way to show children the joy of gardening. It is very easy to see the growth progress the flower makes and they can be amazed by the beautiful giant flower that appears. We thought we would highlight a couple of different ways you can grow these flowers.
Bulbs Encased In Wax
Giving Amaryllis flowers encased in wax was first introduced about two years ago. This growing method promotes that everything you need to grow your flower is enclosed in this protective wax casing. Normally you water your bulb once a week but having the wax coating you do not need to water them. This growing method does work and it works well. It is a great gift to give someone, especially someone who is new to growing plants.
All you need to do is put them in a spot that gets a lot of morning light. Some of them do grow very tall depending on the Amaryllis variety, and they can get top-heavy and fall over. If you see this occurring you might have to bolster the bottom, so there is a little more weight to support the top of the plant.
You can also deadhead the spent flowers if there are other flowers growing on that bloom stalk. Deadheading keeps the energy in the bulb which will be needed for the other flowers. If you get another bloom stalk, you will want to cut the first stalk if there are no more flowers on it, as the plant will need the energy to produce new flowers on the new bloom stalk. One thing we found is the growth of the plants seemed much faster when compared to growing them from a traditional grow kit.
Once the blooming has stopped you can take off the wax and try to save the bulb. To prepare the bulb to plant, cut off the stalk and then see if there are depressions in the wax to just peel off. It should not be too difficult to do. You might find the bulb is a little moist. There is also a wire platform that has been put in the bottom so it stands upright. Remove that wire platform.
You might find the bulb does not have any roots. Put the bulb in a planter with soil but do not water it if the bulb is moist for several days. Before planting you could also just put it on a counter to let it dry out for a day or two.
When you plant it you can just use regular potting soil. We usually use organic potting soil. Also, add some organic fertilizer. In potting put the soil approximately ½ to 2/3 around the bulb. Do not put the soil to the top of the bulb or cover the neck of the bulb. Once you let the bulb dry out you can water it and if you have moss you can put that on top of the soil. It is a nice way to finish off your planter. You just treat your Amaryllis as an annual plant and get rid of the bulb.
Growing Amaryllis In Water
I have not grown Amaryllis this way, but I plan on giving it a try. I have done this with hyacinth bulbs and also an Avocado plant. The first step is to rinse the bulbs off and peel off the outer skin layer of the bulb. If the plant has long leaves on it, cut them off. You can use plastic cups, but there are also bulb vases, which I am going to use as I think they are ready-made for this method of growing plants. If you use plastic cups, you are going to need toothpicks as you don’t want the bulbs to be submerged in the water.
Fill your receptacle with clean water. If you are going to use a plastic cup, put toothpicks in the bulb. Four toothpicks around the bulbs should be enough. Put the roots of the Amaryllis in the water and the toothpicks will hold the bulb out of the water.
You will start to see new leaf growth on the bulbs in several days. Change the water once or twice a week for better growth. Flowers should appear in around 50-60 days.
Let us know if you have tried either of these methods to grow Amaryllis plants.