Growing Amaryllis Outside for Summer

 

Amaryllis make a striking impact during the cold, dark winter months. And getting them to rebloom year after year isn’t difficult. Just give them a chance to replenish their reserves with adequate sunlight, water and fertilizer, and you’ll be rewarded with some pretty amazing blooms.

And this is the time of the year to do it.

I have a collection of amaryllis bulbs that are reliable bloomers that add a spark of joy to our house all winter long – year after year.

I said “all winter“. Amaryllis aren’t just for the holidays. When you think of amaryllis, don’t settle for the simple red or white bulbs you find at the grocery store during the holidays. Look around and you’ll find bulbs that produce flowers in many shapes and colors.

Getting these bulbs to bloom is easy and if you space out their flowering time you’ll enjoy flowers all winter!

And the good news is – every year they produce more blooms than the year before! I”ve read that with proper care some varieties can bloom for up to 75 years!

 

The Hydroponic Advantage

I want to show you how easy it is to nuture these plants through the summer and coax them to bloom next fall. And our hydroponic system is the perfecttool for growing these plants to perfection.

  1. Amaryllis don’t like wet feet! LECA pebbles create the perfect environment for the roots because LECA pebbles never breakdown or decompose, promoting excellent air circulation around the roots
  2. Overwatering is never a problem.

Preparing Amaryllis for Growing Outdoors

Amaryllis bulbs should be grown outdoors during the summer. Don’t worry about extra work because once they’re setup you can practically ignore them. I’ve found that neglect is one of the main ingredients to growing these things!

I like to give the bulbs a fresh start before moving them outdoors for the summer growing season.

  1. Cut off all the lazy looking, droopy leaves that are left over from growing indoors.

 

2. Repot the bulb into a slightly larger grow pot with fresh LECA pebbles.

 

I grow my bulbs in grower trays that are modified for outdoor growing by drilling a hole in the side of the tray for drainage. I never want more that 1/2″ of water in tray. And if there’s a rainy period I dump the water out of the tray and force a dry period of a week or so.

 

Bulbs can also be setup for outdoor growing in individual pots. (I haven’t used this method for amaryllis lately but it’s the same as for orchids. Use your imagination and put an amaryllis bulb in place of the orchid.)

 

Plastic saucer replaces outer pot and provides the reservoir to hold the nutrient solution.

 

We need to cut the saucer down so it only holds the same amount of water as the 1/2 mark on water gauge.

 

Insert water gauge in clay pot

 

Position plant in outer pot.

Now your amaryllis bulb is set up for summer growing.

 

Plant Care For Amaryllis Bulbs Outdoors

With the proper setup, plant care is easy. In fact these plants almost take care of themselves!

Water

Too much water is the biggest challenge. I setup my plants so there’s never more than 1/2″ of water in the reservoir. I force a dry period of several days where the plants sit dry for a couple of days before rewarering. (These plants can actually sit dry for a week or more.)

Light

Filtered sun is ideal. Avoid hot, direct sun. Early morning or late afternoon sun.is okay. My plants sit on a table under a pine tree and get an hour or two of early morning sun.

Nutrients

I use Dyna-Gro Gro 7-9-5 at half strength every time I water.  My plants are exposed to the weather so when mother nature waters, the grow pots get flushed with clear water. I like that balance.

 

This is what your plants will look like after spending the summer outdoors.

 

Healthy roots replenish the energy in the bulb. As fall approaches I’ll show you how to “prepare” your bulbs for blooming next winter.

Expand your Amaryllis collection every year. Replenish the bulbs during the summer and space out the flowering next fall and you’ll enjoy magnificeint flower displays all winter!

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