A Guide to Reblooming Amaryllis

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Posted on 12/01/2023

How to Care for Amaryllis So They Re-bloom for Years

Amaryllis bulbs are more than a holiday gift; they’re a long-term garden and container plant when cared for properly.

amaryllis flowers blooming in a garden

Understanding Amaryllis Care and Hardiness Zones

Amaryllis are known for their spectacular, trumpet-shaped flowers. They are growing in popularity as holiday gifts that add a splash of color and drama to any setting. They're perennials in hardiness zones 9 to 11, meaning with proper care, they'll grace your garden for several seasons.

Hardiness zones are geographic areas defined by climatic conditions, particularly winter temperatures, that guide gardeners to plants that will thrive naturally in their location. Knowing your zone is crucial for the successful ongoing cultivation of your amaryllis bulbs.

General Care Tips for Planting Amaryllis Bulbs in the Garden

Planting: Plant your amaryllis bulbs in well-draining soil with the top third of the bulb exposed. Choose a pot slightly larger than the bulb with adequate drainage.

Watering: Water the plant sparingly until the stem appears, then more regularly as the bud and leaves appear. After blooming, reduce watering. (Waxed amaryllis bulbs need to water, soil, or care to grow.)

Sunlight: Amaryllis thrive in bright, indirect light. Rotate the pot regularly for even growth.

Fertilization: Use a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer every few weeks during the growing season.

amaryllis flowers blooming

How to Encourage Holiday Blooms

Unlike many other bulbs, amaryllis don't require a dormant period to flower. However, if you want to time your plant’s bloom around the holidays the bulb must be forced into dormancy in the fall. When you bring your amaryllis indoors, store it in a cool, dry, and dark place. Let the leaves die back before cutting them and do not water.

After 10-12 weeks, move the bulb back into a bright, sunny place. Begin watering and fertilizing. If your amaryllis has been well-cared for, you can expect to see flower development in 4-6 weeks. Flower development timeframes vary by variety.


Detailed Zone-Specific Care for Holiday Blooming

Zones 3-5:

January-March: Keep overwintered bulbs in a cool, dark place. Minimize watering to induce dormancy.

April-May: Begin to reintroduce water and light slowly.

June-August: Move outdoors if possible; continue regular watering and feeding.

September-October: Bring bulbs indoors before the first frost; reduce watering to encourage dormancy.

November-December: Repot if necessary and start regular watering to initiate blooming around the holidays.

Zones 6-8:

January-February: Reduce watering for dormancy if kept indoors; outdoors, protect from frost.

March-April: Gradually increase water and fertilization.

May-September: Maintain regular care; provide afternoon shade in peak summer.

October-November: Decrease watering to prepare for dormancy.

December: Resume regular watering for holiday blooms.

Zones 9-11:

January-February: Move to a cooler spot if indoors; outdoors, ensure adequate water.

March-August: Regular care, with more frequent watering in high heat.

September-October: Start reducing watering to induce a shorter dormancy period.

November-December: Resume watering for holiday flowering.


Amaryllis Fun Facts

  • Amaryllis grow up to 1” per day!
  • There are more than 600 named varieties of amaryllis flowers
  • Amaryllis bulbs can last 75 years or more with proper care
  • Waxed amaryllis bulbs don’t need water to grow