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April Amaryllis


We have an amaryllis “Apple Blossom” that last flowered in September on a short, stubby pole and it was unexpected and disappointing that it was all over rather quickly. Since then, the bulb has remained fat and stubbornly inactive until about a month or so ago, when it decided to have another go and began to send up a flower spike.

Fast forward to the start of April and this time, we have four flower buds atop a stunning 2.5′ (75 cm) spike. It is so tall I’ve had to weigh the pot down and truss the spike with “guide ropes”. Frequent turning of the pot stopped the spike from leaning too far in one direction.

Amaryllis flower buds

Returning from the Easter holiday we came back to all four flowers open, facing the compass directions like some sort of floral air raid siren.

Amaryllis Flowers

The long winter makes this a very welcome and cheering sight. The amaryllis is a few years old now and is going through a period of random flowering times as it returns to its usual flowering habit (after being forced for Christmas). I still find it fascinating each time it starts to send a flower spike up. It grows so quickly, it really does rocket skywards. We’ve had this one bulb long enough for it to produce a couple of offsets that have been separated and potted on.

While I’ve read several ways on how to treat amaryllis so that it flowers at Christmas, I’m just going to let it continue doing its thing; that way I don’t know when it’s going to flower nor what I’ll get (single spike? double? three flowers? flour?). I still don’t know the signal that triggers a seemingly dead/inactive bulb into life and sending a flower spike up. It’s these sudden and rapid changes after long periods of remaining constant that surprise and delight.

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Sunil Patel

I'm Sunil Patel, this is me. I created the Garden at 13 Broom Acres and I open it to visitors. I also bake and write blog posts giving a "behind the scenes" look into what it's like to maintain such a garden.

Visit the blog, then come and visit the garden. We can have a good sit-down, a jolly chinwag and a relaxing cup of tea with a sinfully generous slice of home made cake.

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susan maclean 07/04/2013 - 10:13 pm

Glorious too! I don’t “do” indoor, because they always die (through my miscare), but this makes me think I just might get a bulb! Well done, Sunil.

Sunil 09/04/2013 - 3:08 pm

Hi Mrs. Mac, you should try it, it would be a cheap experiment as you can get bulbs for a few pounds if they don’t come with the pot and “presentation” pack.

gardeninacity 07/04/2013 - 10:47 pm

That is one stupendous Amaryllis! Well done!

Sunil 09/04/2013 - 3:09 pm

Hi Jason, thanks. It’s so tall I had to stand on a chair to get a decent angle to take the picture.

Casa Mariposa 08/04/2013 - 2:17 am

That’s really impressive! My windows are tinted to keep my house cooler in the summer and while you can’t really tell, it’s enough to make growing bubs inside difficult. It’s great for my utility bills but I wish I could grow amaryllis, too.

Sunil 13/04/2013 - 7:37 pm

Wow – you have posh windows! You’d never find tinted house windows here, we crave any sunlight we can get. I stick mine out once the night time temperatures stay above 5 C and then bring them in for the winter – they’ve always flowered inside. At the moment it is pretty dark for the indoor plants as there’s still that great big temporary greenhouse right in front of the patio doors that blocks a great deal of light.

Paula @ Spoons n Spades 09/04/2013 - 10:10 am

Such a beautiful Amaryllis! Other than spider plants, I avoid indoor plants as they never last here, you’re very fortunate.

Sunil 09/04/2013 - 3:22 pm

Hello Paula, thank you – I do try and keep house plants to a minimum as I’m not very good at looking after them either, but the Amaryllis is quite easy as it spends most of it’s time either as a dormant bulb or outside in the sun and rain.


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