Scarlet amaryllis flower 2020

Amaryllis Unfolding

I’ve had this one amaryllis among my houseplants for years. Maybe decades. I can’t remember where I got it and have no idea what its variety name is. It’s a basic bright scarlet. No stripes or two-tone effects.

I vaguely recall it blooming long ago and trying various techniques to get it to rebloom — putting it outside for the summer, withholding water when leaves started yellowing, etc. What happened was the bulb split into three smaller bulbs. I potted them individually and grew them on. Sometimes one of them surprised me and put out a bloom stalk, but the bulbs remained small.

I must have figured out the proper treatment somewhere along the line. One bulb, which spent most of the time in an east window, got bigger and fatter. It has bloomed reliably, and this year (after a splendid growth of leaves last spring and summer) decided to form not one, but two bloom stalks. What is strange is that it never had the necessary period of dormancy first. A couple of leaves started to yellow last fall, so I reduced watering in preparation for dormancy during the winter. Instead, the plant sprouted a bud! So I resumed watering and moved it to a south window. A few weeks later, a second bud emerged. Thrills and excitement!

Here is a series of pictures from bud to bloom, January 26th to February 2nd.

Scarlet amaryllis bud opening 2020
Scarlet amaryllis bud opening 2020
Scarlet amaryllis bud unfolding 2020
Scarlet amaryllis buds about to open 2020
Scarlet amaryllis flower 2020
The first of four flowers!
Second amaryllis bud developing 2020
The second bud. Maybe only two flowers rather than four.

41 comments

  1. It looks like it could be a ‘Red Lion.’ Amaryllis are mysterious plants in that they often do what we don’t expect AND they choose their own time to do it. Beautiful photos, Audrey!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Steve. I will return it to that spot once it’s finished blooming. Right now I have it in a room with venetian blinds on the window because I wouldn’t want those big red flowers to attract hummingbirds into collisions with the glass.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. They are sold that way sometimes. I bought one called “Apple Blossom” at a post-Christmas sale and discovered that there were no drainage holes in the pot and the “soil” was pure peat moss, intended only to hold the plant up until it was finished blooming, when it would be discarded. I repotted the bulb into better dirt and hope it will rebloom some day.

      Liked by 1 person

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