The Q&A Archives: Forcing Aztec Lily

Questioner's Location: Windsor, ON
Date: August 25, 1998

Question: Is it posible to force a red Aztec lily indoors for a Christmas flower? Will it need greenhouse conditions or can it be forced indoors with artificial light? If it needs artificial light, how many hours per day does it need to flower?

Answer: You certainly can force them, and it's easier than you'd think! These lovely flowers are actually members of the Amaryllis family, and can be used as a Christmas flower, just like their cousins. In a six-inch pot, plant the bulb with the top third exposed from the soil. Place the pot in a cool, dark place, to allow it to begin to develop roots. Six to eight weeks before you want it to bloom, pull it out to room temperature and a bit of light. After a few days, apply some water to the soil. When growth begins, move the pot to brighter light and keep soil evenly moist. It enjoys humidity, so you may wish to place it on a tray of stones filled with water. Don't let the water level reach the pot, or it will get waterlogged. Your question has inspired me to try this myself! Enjoy!

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