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How to Save an Amaryllis for Next Year

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How to Save an Amaryllis for Next Year

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Overview

Amaryllis bulbs are often forced to bloom during the winter holidays, sporting flowers in red, pink, white or a combination of these colors. There is no need to purchase fresh amaryllis bulbs each fall, as your old bulbs can be saved and forced into bloom year after year. While the plants appear to die after the blooming, they only go dormant. They must be prepared and stored correctly in order to grow and flower again.

Step 1

Snip off the flower stalk after the last bloom withers. Cut it off at the base of the plant with a pair of shears, and then set the pot in a bright, sunny window.

Step 2

Water the amaryllis when the soil surface begins to dry. Water until the excess moisture drains from the bottom of the pot.

Step 3

Fertilize the amaryllis with a balanced soluble houseplant food once monthly when the foliage is green and growing. Follow label instructions for exact application rate.

Step 4

Stop watering and fertilizing the plant when the foliage begins to yellow and die back. Cut the dead foliage off where it emerges from the soil.

Step 5

Place the pot in a dark location that is 45 to 50 degrees F. Lay the pot on its side. This forces the bulb into dormancy. Leave the pot in this location for two to three months, then you can begin the forcing and blooming process again.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not remove the foliage until it dies back on its own. Amaryllis must have three to four healthy leaves through the summer in order to store enough nutrients to bloom.

Things You'll Need

  • Shears
  • Fertilizer

References

  • Iowa State University Extension: Amaryllis are Fabulous, Foolproof and Fun
  • University of Nebraska: Reblooming Amaryllis
Keywords: save amaryllis bulbs, amaryllis storage, caring for amaryllis

About this Author

Jenny Harrington has been a freelance writer since 2006. Her published articles have appeared in various print and online publications, including the "Dollar Stretcher." Previously, she owned her own business, selling handmade items online, wholesale and at crafts fairs. Harrington's specialties include small business information, crafting, decorating and gardening.