An amaryllis (Hippeastrum) is a flowering plant native to the South American tropics. The stems of the amaryllis grow 2-3 feet in height, and produce large, colorful, bell-shaped blooms that make them popular among home gardeners. Modern cultivars come from Holland, North America and South Africa, but the largest flowers are produced on the Dutch hybrids. Bloom colors range from shades of pink to variegated red and solid white. Amaryllis bulbs are inexpensive to buy and, with a little bit of preparation and care, easy to cultivate.
Purchase amaryllis bulbs from a local nursery or garden center. Amaryllis bulbs are usually abundant in these stores, particularly several weeks before holidays like Christmas or Easter when the amaryllis are widely used as decorative blooming plants.
Place bulbs in garden pots that contain holes for drainage.
Fill the pots containing the amaryllis bulbs with a garden potting mix or, when available, a potting mix made especially for bulbs. Leave 1/2 to 2/3 of the bulbs exposed to promote early flowering.
Water the bulbs thoroughly.
Move the amaryllis bulbs to a warm, sunny location where the temperatures reach about 75 degrees Fahrenheit. The plants need several hours of direct sunlight to bloom properly.
Move amaryllis to a cooler, more shaded location once the flowers begin to bloom. The cooler temperatures help extend the life of the colorful blooms.