Sunday, January 29, 2012

My Amaryllis Finished Blooming, So Now What?

Whatever you do, don't throw out your Amaryllis that finished blooming!

One of the wonderful attributes of the Amaryllis is its re-blooming ability. With a little extra care and patience, one can enjoy its bloom again and again.

Since I posted the progression of my Amaryllis since December, I've placed it in a cool spot, nearest my window. The cooler temps have aided in its longevity. (Not too cool, as a frosty window can be too cold) I've been able to enjoy it's flowering for over 3 weeks now. I've also been careful not to get the bulb wet when I've watered and to also water only when the soil around the bulb is dry. Be sure to not to forget to water, as the flowers will stay hydrated and will last longer when you do.

It's sad to see no colour and it's happy blooms gone, but now is the time to bring life back to the bulb.

2 sets of blooms, removing one set
Once one set of blooms started to wither, I didn't wait to see them drop. I simply pinched the flower stalk back to just an inch above the bulb and let the other two blooms remain. I pinched them off using my thumb-nail rather than using my secateurs.  I find this way I wouldn't of damaged the other blooms. Just watch the stamens and anthers dusted with yellow pollen, they are full of it and it will stick; staining your clothes and furniture.

Remaining two blooms faded :(





About a week later, the remaining two blooms also withered.




I then removed them with my secateurs.

Cutting with my handy Felco's
















Be careful handling the removed blooms, red flowers especially give off staining colour as the bloom gets mushy in parts as it withers. I like to remove them first, and then the stock, so that I don't get pollen everywhere.


Some folks recommend leaving the flower stock until it goes yellow and limp. I cut mine off. Perhaps I am impatient, or not - I just find it's simpler since the bulb does not require to hydrate the stalk and reduce wasted energy until it withers away.

Try real hard not to damage the leaves when removing the stalk. I used my sharp secuteers to do this, which makes a swift cut.
If you use a knife, cut away from the leaves. Energy returns back into the bulb when the leaves are healthy and robust.

Watch when cutting! Water will drain from the stock and can spill out. I just let all that water drain back into the pot.















As soon as you've removed the flower stalk, place the Amaryllis into a bright area. The leaves will begin to thicken and perhaps gain a greener hue because of the light. South facing is best. You can't give too much light. You want to bulk up the leaves, so that the bulb grows in diametre.

Every watering, I have been using Schultz's All Purpose plant food (7-7-7). Although, to increase flower production (bulb embryo inside) it would be best to use fertilizer with a high middle number, which encourages blooms.

I plan on bringing it outside to let it flourish once the threat of frost is gone. The last time I did this, several outer leaves wilted and became yellow. I simple removed them and let the newer leaves emerge from the centre. 

Here is my post what to do to - the way to store and start the process all over again. 

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