The Q&A Archives: How To Care For Amaryllis Belladonna

Question: I have been given some bulbs that are to be surprise lilies (my family calls them naked ladies). When do I need to plant them and how do I care for them?

Answer: The name "naked ladies" (Amaryllis belladonna) refers to the fact that the flowers appear when the plant is leafless. They bloom in mid- to late summer or fall for about 3 weeks. Plant the 4-inch large bulbs about 8 inches deep to the base of the bulb, so at least 2 inches of soil covers the bulb. They like good drainage, full sun, and heat in the summer. They also like to be somewhat dry during late spring and early summer. You won't usually see leaves until after they flower. Once established, they can stay in the ground for some time without needing division. Generally they are planted in late spring.

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