A Place of Unique Beauty Seeking to
Inspire, Enlighten, and Connect
People of All Ages to the World of Plants, Gardening, and Horticulture
February Plant of the Month
Hippeastrum sp. -amaryllis
by Adrienne Roethling
Amaryllis originated in South Africa and has become a popular flower to give as gifts during the winter holidays. It is one of the easiest plants to grow and will bloom well from year to year. Typically, gardeners keep bulbs as tropical or house plants but, if given a proper site, amaryllis may survive outdoors in the Piedmont region of North Carolina.
If you choose to place amaryllis outdoors, plant bulbs in spring to allow enough root establishment before their first winter in the ground. Place the top of the bulbs just below the soil surface in well drained soils preferably in full sun as well as a protected location such as the south side of a foundation or wall. If grown as a container plant for the holidays, most amaryllis lie dormant in summer after the flowers and leaves yellowed and withered away. At this time, place the potted bulb in a shady location where it can stay dormant. In fall, slowly begin watering and providing light where the flower stalks will soon appear. Amaryllis produce 3-4 large, trumpet-like flowers on 18” stems. Colors range from red and white to pink and orange, some flowers are double and some flowers are variegated.
Join or renew your garden membership during February and your name will be included in a drawing for a complimentary Hippeastrum sp. or amaryllis.