Archive for the ‘Amaryllis’ Category

So many amaryllis blooming all at once! Just spectacular!

So many amaryllis blooming all at once! Just spectacular!

I just couldn’t help sharing this photo I took when I visited the Bloomaker production facility yesterday! This is truly an Amaryllis forest! The Viettes are testing some amazing new varieties this year …  There’s more to come!

Next week I’ll share my pics from the Maymont Flower & Garden Show in Richmond. I’ll be there on Saturday – it’s going to be a great show! If you happen to be at the Maymont show on Saturday (2/12), be sure to catch Mark Viette’s talk “Gardening for Fun” at 11:30am.

Look for a flower show in your area! There are a lot around in February and March. Next week (2/17 – 2/20) is the New Jersey Flower & Garden Show! Mark will be there, too! On Thursday afternoon (2/17) he will be at the show from 2:00 – 4:00 taking gardening questions from the audience during a LIVE taping of his radio show “Easy Gardening”. If you’re at the show on Thursday be sure to stop by and say hi – and bring your gardening questions!

Until next time – Happy gardening!

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Oh my goodness – my amaryllis are incredible now! I promised to report back and I am so excited to share these pictures of my beautiful flowers.

A stunning red - Amaryllis 'Ferrari'

A stunning red - Amaryllis 'Ferrari'

Since my last amaryllis post, the flower stems of my ‘Ferrari’ have shot up to about 24″ tall and one stem has burst open with four huge 7″ blossoms. These flowers have been gorgeous for at least 10 days and they are STILL going strong, showing no signs of fading – just spectacular! And red – what an amazing shade of fire engine red or should I say Ferrari red – WOW! The photos do not do it justice. This one is a keeper for sure. The second stem is just beginning to pop now and promises to be equally as striking with four more beautiful blooms to open!

Amaryllis 'Blossom Bingo' looks like a beautiful water lily!

Amaryllis 'Blossom Bingo' looks like a beautiful water lily!

‘Blossom Bingo’ was an exciting surprise with beautiful 6″, fully double blooms. The flowers are a soft white with pink radiating from the tips down toward the base. Deep pink veins highlight each petal. The form of the flowers reminds me of a beautiful water lily! This flower stem has seven flower buds! Another keeper! I have never seen such a beautiful double amaryllis.

This flower stem of 'Blossom Bingo' holds 7 flowers!

This flower stem of 'Blossom Bingo' holds seven flowers!

‘Angelique’ is a bit of a disappointment so far but it was a smaller bulb and I was suspicious that it might not perform as well. This is one thing that is so true with these plants – the bigger the bulb, the better the flowering with more stems, more flowers, and larger flowers. There are 2 flowering stems from this bulb but there are only 3 flowers on the stem that has opened and these are quite small. They haven’t fully opened yet so maybe they’ll be more exciting in a few days. The flowers are a double white with petals tipped in blush pink. I am reserving judgment on this one for now.

'Ferrari', 'Blossom Bingo', 'Minerva', and just peeking out - 'Angelique'.

Amaryllis 'Ferrari', 'Blossom Bingo', 'Minerva', and just peeking out - 'Angelique'.

‘Minerva’ continues to bloom away! The blossoms on the first flower stalk eventually faded after almost 3 weeks but the second stem is now in full bloom with 6 beautiful flowers! The third stem is growing taller and should burst into bloom about the time the second has finished. I anticipate this one will be giving me blooms for close to two months!

I’m totally sold on amaryllis now, especially when I can get huge bulbs like these from our friends at Bloomaker! They seem to bloom forever and … the best part is that my kitties don’t seem to bother them! I can display them prominently in the window at the end of our kitchen table and enjoy them whenever we sit down to eat!

Until next time – Happy Gardening!

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My Amaryllis Forest

My amaryllis bulbs seem to be growing well.

My amaryllis bulbs seem to be growing well so far.

Well, it’s not really a forest – maybe a grove … a copse … OK I’m just growing four but I’m kind of excited about it. You see, I’ve never tried to grow them before because I assumed our cats would decide they looked like an interesting snack – especially the newest addition to our feline family, Skitz.

Skitz has made herself comfortable in the Christmas tree.

Skitz has made herself comfortable in the middle of the Christmas tree.

After knocking most of the ornaments off, she decided that the most comfy place to hang out was in the middle of our artificial Christmas tree. Looks like it’s a good thing we didn’t put up a real tree this year – especially since we were away in Vermont for Christmas!

Anyway, I’ve gotten side tracked – back to the amaryllis! It all started when Mark Viette got some exciting new Amaryllis bulbs from Brazil that he wanted to test. Mark asked me if I would be willing to grow some of them and evaluate them; i.e. number of stems, number of flowers per stem, flower size, etc. “Oh I would love to,” I told him, “but I’m afraid my cats would destroy them before they got very far along!”

The beautiful Amaryllis 'Minerva' flower is just beginning to  open.

The beautiful Amaryllis 'Minerva' flower is just beginning to open. In the next day or two it should be fully open.

In the end, I decided to try growing 4 of the bulbs. I also took a bunch up to Vermont with me and gave them to my family up there. Talk about an amaryllis forest – my mom loves amaryllis and has a whole windowsill of them now. She has great success with them and manages to get them to rebloom from year to year.

I’m growing my amaryllis in a bay window on the breakfast room table. So far, the cats seem to be leaving them alone – I think. The first one to bloom was ‘Minerva’. This is not one of the special new test varieties but it is very pretty none-the-less and one of my favorite cultivars. This was a huge bulb, about 4″ in diameter. It has 3 flowering stems at the moment and maybe a 4th yet to come! The stem bud that is opening now has at least 4 flowers on it. Spectacular!

At least four flowers will open on this one flower stem.

At least four flowers will open on this one flower stem and the stem behind it is now beginning to open as well!

The other three, ‘Blossom Bingo’, ‘Ferrari’, and ‘Angelique’, have at least 2 stems starting with nice fat buds. I’m excited to see how they progress and what the flowers will look like. I’m pretty sure ‘Ferrari’ will be red!

I have my amaryllis growing in water surrounded by decorative stones rather than in soil. This is a much cleaner way to grow them and the lack of soil may be making them less attractive to the cats! The bulbs are stabilized in the vase with a special pegged bulb holder which sits on top of a small oasis about 1½” thick. Before sticking the bulb on the holder, I carefully trimmed the roots flush with the bottom of the bulb (new roots will grow into the water and rocks). I keep the water level near the bottom of the bulb so very little of the bulb is submerged. Too much water might cause it to rot.

Here’s hoping they continue to grow and bloom! I’ll post some pics when the rest begin to bloom.

Read more about growing amaryllis from our website.

Until next time – Happy Gardening!

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