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Nervous Amaryllis Mom needs Hand Holding

Lincoln, NE(Zone 5b)

This forum turned me into a crazy Amaryllis buyer last fall and winter. I ended up buying 25 Amaryllis. Two died after flowering. The rest spent the summer outside in their pots, getting an occasional fertilizing. Two sent up stems in Aug and one of those bloomed. The other one I moved to a larger pot and the stem withered up and died. The rest I have been letting dry up for about a month outside and brought inside a week ago. Right now they are just sitting in the kitchen until I decide where to put them. I have ordered some fungicide/miticide to treat them with. Does this just get sprayed on the top of the bulbs or should the soil be washed off the roots and do they need sprayed with it too? I am very nervous about getting these to rebloom. Here is what they like now.

Thumbnail by lincolnitess
Lincoln, NE(Zone 5b)

Most of the bulbs from last year are in 4" pots and look very root bound. When moving to larger pots, should the soil be loosened around these roots or just put this whole rootball into a pot with new soil around it? Here is what they look like now.

Thumbnail by lincolnitess
Gainesville, FL(Zone 9a)

Did they bloom in those little pots? I just ordered a bunch from the coop and I was over here trying to figure out what to do with them once I get them. I was hoping to use pots of three for gifts.

Lincoln, NE(Zone 5b)

I bought a wine cooler last winter to put these into, but have been told that didn't work real well for someone else. If I put them in the cooler would it be best to wash all the soil off the roots or just leave them like they are? How important is darkness? Here is a shot of Minerva, the one that bloomed for me in late August outside. I have not started to dry it up yet. How many weeks do the leaves need to grow after blooming before letting them dry down? I'm sorry to have so many questions and I know many of them have been answered before on this forum, but I really do feel like a nervous new Mom and just hate the thought of losing too many of these before they bloom again. I have ordered some new bulbs too for this winter just to be sure some will bloom.

Susan

Thumbnail by lincolnitess
Lincoln, NE(Zone 5b)

gardenglory, yes, all mine did bloom in the 4" pots last year. A few that were larger I put in 5-6" pots. I think someone said there should be about an inch between the bulb and the outside of the pot, but hopefully we will hear from one of the experts.

Gulfport, FL(Zone 9b)

1 inch between bulb and outside of pot... :-)

Palm Coast, FL(Zone 9a)

If you are going to put them in the cooler, you can wash off the dirt, spray them with a fungicide or dust with ground up cinnamon ( a natural antiseptic), let them dry for several days, then wrap them in a sheet of newspaper. Any moisture left on the roots will be an invitation to rot. During the winter, check the newspaper for dampness, and change it if it is damp. The paper helps to wick away some of the moisture. I was the one who used the wine cooler. The bulbs that were touching the back wall, actually froze, even though a thermometer read 48. I guess just having the condenser run is enough to make that metal wall too cold. Some folks put the potted bulbs into a cool, dark basement, no watering, and repot the bulbs into fresh soil 8 weeks before they want the bulb to bloom. I don't think that occasional basement lights are going to make the bulbs sprout. I think that keeping the bulbs out of natural light is more important. Do you have a basement that stays above freezing, or know someone that does? Perhaps putting the bulbs next to a basement furnace or hot water heater. The soil in the pots provides a tiny bit of temperature insulation to the bulbs. Maria in Virginia puts them in her garage, but Nebraska is probably going to be too cold for that. In Florida it's hard to force dormancy, because we don't have basements, and our garages are too warm in the winter. That's why I gave up on reblooming them in the house. I plant the spent bulbs outside, and let them rebloom on their own schedule.

Lincoln, NE(Zone 5b)

Thanks Barb for the information about the cooler. I knew someone had tried it. I ended up closing off a room in my basement and hope it will work out. The rooms on either side of it are heated and I left one door open just a crack to let a little heat in. It feels pretty cold in there but I think it would be about the same as an unheated gargage that's attached to the house. I do have some new bulbs coming, so know I'll at least have some bulbs unless those freeze on the way here. I have a Blushing Bride at work that is ready to open in a few days. It came from eBay.

Susan

Gainesville, FL(Zone 9a)

I plant my bulbs outside too. They have never rebloomed, but a few weeks ago I moved them out of the gingers and put them in moe sun, I hope it does the trick. I see them blooming in other peoples yards.

Palm Coast, FL(Zone 9a)

They need at least 1/2 sun to rebloom. Mine are in a west exposure, my neighbor's are on an east exposure. Both of us have them in a dedicated Amaryllis bed.

Aurora, IL

Susan,
I was also bitten. I ended up with 10. Some arrived late winter and never bloomed. Others were stunning! I put all outside for the summer. When visitng, my mother commented that she had no luck getting any to rebloom. Nervous, I got into another co-op and have 10 more coming this fall!

As for the ones from my garden, I put them on a dry porch until the temps dropped to 40. Now they are inside. Most of the leaves dried up, some are still green. I'm watering again and will see....

I'm looking forward to following your progress. I believe mine will bloom again at some point. And I have some coming to enjoy this year.
Judy

Winchester, KY(Zone 6a)

Susan, when I've purchased new ones, for some reason after that first bloom, they often take a couple of years to start blooming again for me. Not sure what's up with that, but they typically get into a regular cycle of yearly blooming, with an occasional 2nd summer bloom. I leave my bulbs potted year round, and just let the pot set dry till I notice buds emerging-usually around December-January. About every 3rd year, I repot with fresh compost. During the summer they stay outside in the shade, and get regular watering and occasional soluble fertilizer. I withdraw water when they come inside till I see buds arise. When they're dry and dormant, they set in an unheated room.

Lincoln, NE(Zone 5b)

Thanks for letting me know yours often don't bloom the second year. I probably would have given up on mine if they skipped a year, but now I will keep trying. I have them in the basement in a cool room now. Glad I have a few new ones that will bloom for sure this year.

Susan

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