The Q&A Archives: Is it time to re-pot

Question: Greetings! I planted a Amaryllis Hippeastrum Apple Blossom Bulb in a pot, it came as a kit. Well the leaves a grown beautful an so tall they are falling to the side, one broke. What should I do? In addition should I be concerned about ants in my outside garden? Thanxs!

Answer: I suspect your amaryllis is doing quite well, and it needs to produce a large amount of foliage in order to build its strength up enough to bloom. It is normal for the leaves to fall sideways, but not for them to break. I'd cut off the broken one and set the plant where it won't have to be moved and subjected to breakage. Amaryllis needs bright light, regular fertilizing with a water soluble fertilizer such as 10-10-10 plus minors, and regular watering. Some gardeners will set their amaryllis outdoors for the summer in a location with morning sun or bright dappled light all day. In the late fall, allow it to rest. Stop watering and store it in a dark location that is cool, say 50 degrees. After 8 to 10 weeks, bring it back into the light and restart it growing. (If it begins to grow before that, bring it into the light even though the full rest time has not passed.) Water once to moisten and keep the soil just barely damp until you see it grow again. With luck, it will bloom. After it blooms, remove the bloom stalk and keep it going like a houseplant again.

Ants in the garden are usually beneficial so you don't need to control them. Good luck with your amaryllis!

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