It’s Time for Paperwhites & Amaryllis!

gillnurseryColor for the Season2 Comments

It’s time to think about getting your fall bulbs.

Amaryllis is one of the easiest bulbs to grow that will bloom for you year after year. They can be planted in a perennial bed or grown in pots. When planting them in the ground, pick a location that receives morning sun and afternoon shade. Every three years in October you can dig up and divide these bulbs as they multiply underground. Cooler temperatures in the fall will encourage your bulbs to bloom. Feed regularly with a water soluble plant food every 2 weeks or Hi-Yield Bone Meal every 4-6 weeks. Each plant will send up 1-2 bloom spikes with 4-6 blooms per spike. Holiday blooming Amaryllis are always a treat!

Another great holiday bulb is Paperwhite Narcissus. These can be grown in a vase with water or in a pot with soil. Most are forced in decorative vases in water for the holidays. All you need is a clear vase or bowl, small pea gravel to stabilize the bulbs and water. Pick your container, add several inches of pea gravel to the bottom. Nestle the bulbs side by side into the gravel and add water just to the bottom of the bulbs. Roots will emerge into the water and gravel. The bulbs will grow and bloom faster if refrigerated for 4-6 weeks prior to planting. We have them under refrigeration now. If they are potted Thanksgiving weekend, you should have pretty budded and blooming Paperwhites for the holidays. An optional tip to discourage tall floppy plants is to water them with 8 parts water to 1 part Gin or Vodka. That is approximately 4 cups water to ½ cup spirits. Both Amaryllis and Paperwhite Narcissus make for beautiful holiday gift giving.



2 Comments on “It’s Time for Paperwhites & Amaryllis!”

  1. 1. Does the amaryllis need to be dug up and refrigerated for Christmas blooms?

    2. If I divide amaryllis bulbs do I replant immediately or refrigerate and then plant at Thanksgiving?

    1. Hi Kimberly – you do not need to dig them up and refrigerate for them to bloom this winter. Wait until after they bloom to divide, and most Amaryllis bulbs do not need to be refrigerated. You can wipe them off with a dry cloth (no water) and store them in a cool, dry place.

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