The Q&A Archives: Amarillis Bulbs Do Not Flower

Question: Have several amaryllis bulbs several years. They do not flower. Have fertilized them and allowed leaves to dry out. All they do is produce 4 foot leaves. What is wroong?

Answer: Four feet is unusually long for amaryllis foliage, so I suspect your plants need more light when they are in active growth. The rule of thumb is that the bulb needs to produce about seven healthy leaves in order to rebloom. This means it must be kept in vigorous growth over quite a long period. Indoors, keep the plant in very bright light, even direct sun, from now until next fall. If possible, set it outdoors in dappled shade for the summer. Fertilize according to the label instructions with a water soluble fertilizer, being careful not to overfertilize. Keep the soil moist but not sopping wet. Next fall, withold water and set the pot in a cool (45 to 60 degrees) dark location to rest for about 8 to 10 weeks. Allow the leaves to yellow and wither, then trim them off. Next, water it lightly once, place it in very bright light and wait until it begins to grow again. Once it is growing again, it should bloom assuming it made enough foliar growth the preceding season.

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