Amaryllis and Hippeastrum forum→Those waxed Amaryllis bulbs

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Name: Alice
St. Johns, FL (Zone 9a)
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ardesia
Dec 5, 2019 9:11 AM CST
A friend just asked me if I thought one of the waxed bulbs could be in full sun. She lives in Texas so that really would be full, hot sun. I have never grown one and wondered if anyone had any thoughts on this?
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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Dec 5, 2019 12:11 PM CST
Position them in an area with more morning sun and then filtered light in the hotter afternoons during summer. Depending if they have rains, then that will help cool down her plants.

On my side, we get too hot, too dry so I also have to step up watering, so it is imperative my Amaryllis are in a well draining media and containers with drain holes.

Personally I don't like those marketing gimmicks where the bulbs are waxed. I would rather avoid getting those if possible.
Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
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crawgarden
Dec 5, 2019 5:51 PM CST
JMHO I would not get one of the waxed bulbs, you have no ability to regrow it the following year.
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Name: Barbara
Palm Coast, FL
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bsharf
Dec 6, 2019 5:17 AM CST

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A waxed bulb shouldn't be in full sun. Perhaps an eastern windowsill.
Name: Alice
St. Johns, FL (Zone 9a)
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ardesia
Dec 6, 2019 7:10 AM CST
Thanks, I feel the same about the gimmicky waxed bulbs but my friend just got this as a gift. She was so disappointed when I told her it was a one off that it would likely not live if it were planted after the holidays like an unwaxed bulb . Apparently the directions that came with it (from Jackson & Perkins) said full sun but I was afraid full sun in TX would be too much. I will tell her the panel of experts suggested moderation. Thank You!
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Name: Rick Moses
Derwood, MD (Zone 7b)
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RickM
Dec 6, 2019 7:28 AM CST
I was horrified when I first saw a waxed buln!

I don't know if the wax can be removed or not. If so,it may increase chances of the bulb growing. With the was removed, the bulb can breathe.

I would set the bulb in the sun, bottom up, to soften the wax. GENTLY try to remove some wax around the basal plate. If the plate hasn't been too damaged, the bulb should start sprouting roots.

I may have to get one just to try.
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[Last edited by RickM - Dec 6, 2019 7:29 AM (+)]
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Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
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crawgarden
Dec 6, 2019 8:47 AM CST
Looking at the cost of some of the bulbs, it's about the same as a non waxed bulb that you know will rebloom the following year if taken care of properly. Unfortunately we have become a "throw away" society.
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.
Name: Alice
St. Johns, FL (Zone 9a)
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ardesia
Dec 6, 2019 10:19 AM CST
I agree , it is probably the "no watering necessary" also, that is probably the only way some people can have a blooming plant.
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Name: Ron
Modi'in Israel (Zone 11a)
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sangel
Dec 6, 2019 10:34 AM CST
RickM said:I was horrified when I first saw a waxed buln!

I don't know if the wax can be removed or not. If so,it may increase chances of the bulb growing. With the was removed, the bulb can breathe.

I would set the bulb in the sun, bottom up, to soften the wax. GENTLY try to remove some wax around the basal plate. If the plate hasn't been too damaged, the bulb should start sprouting roots.

I may have to get one just to try.


As far as I know, root system is intentionally cut off, so even you you remove all the wax, bulbs will die.

I glad that here we do not have this kind of "garbage"
Name: Alice
St. Johns, FL (Zone 9a)
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ardesia
Dec 6, 2019 2:34 PM CST
One can't even compost the bulb with that wax on it. Thumbs down
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Name: tfc
North Central TX (Zone 8a)
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tx_flower_child
Jan 2, 2020 6:52 PM CST
I would think that Texas heat could melt the wax and I would enjoy seeing that happen. (Sorry to be perverse. Couldn't help it. 😈 ) Of course there are many microclimates in the state. Maybe would only melt in the hottest part.
Name: Barbara
Palm Coast, FL
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bsharf
Jan 3, 2020 4:21 AM CST

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I've never bought one, but my understanding is the basal plate has been sliced off to make the bulb stand up better, so it won't survive long and rebloom, even if the wax is removed.
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Amazindirt
Sep 5, 2020 8:33 AM CST
Just a note --

I got some of the waxed bulbs last year when they were on sale. I peeled the wax off and pulled out the metal insert, and so far they are growing fine. We Shall See how they do next year!
Name: Barbara
Palm Coast, FL
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bsharf
Sep 8, 2020 3:57 AM CST

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I think that members of this forum would like to see photos of the growing bulb that you rescued from its wax coating. If you make a series of photos with explanations, this could make an interesting article for the NGA weekly newsletter. Gardeners would like to know, that with knowledge, patience and some luck, they can rescue waxed bulbs after the initial blooming.
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Amazindirt
Sep 9, 2020 9:51 AM CST
Hmm. I may do that. I noticed just the other day that I had forgotten about one of them and just left it lying on top of the soil in another amaryllis's pot -- and it has grown roots down into the pot. They are tough buggers!

I think it's all going to depend on whether the growers have cut off all of the basal plate when they prepare the bulbs for the wax dipping. As long as some of the plate is left, it can regrow.
Name: Alice
St. Johns, FL (Zone 9a)
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ardesia
Sep 9, 2020 11:02 AM CST
True. I have accidently severed parts of amaryllis bulbs when transplanting but as long as there is still some basal plate all the pieces will re-grow. I do dust any cut sides with a fungicide or cinnamon.
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[Last edited by ardesia - Sep 15, 2020 8:33 AM (+)]
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Name: Barbara
Palm Coast, FL
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bsharf
Sep 11, 2020 3:39 AM CST

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Amaryllis are very hardy. And there is a lot of moisture in the bulb which helps them survive. That's why you often see pale top-growth and even abnormal flowers in bulbs that spent most of the winter in closed sale boxes or in paper bags that were delayed during shipment. Even though those bulbs look horrible, they can be saved. I haven't heard of anyone saving a waxed bulb, so this would be very interesting, if you are successful at keeping that bulb growing.
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Amazindirt
Sep 11, 2020 3:33 PM CST
I think I have three of them altogether -- two that I actually planted, plus the one I forgot about. If I think of it, I'll get pics!
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Amazindirt
Sep 15, 2020 8:28 AM CST
Okay, I finally took pics of those bulbs yesterday. It turns out I never got *any* of them planted -- I just set them between the other pots and forgot about them! But they are all growing well. You'll see that there is lots of tree-leaf litter and moisture amongst the pots, so they've been growing kind of like epiphytes or forest-floor plants. The roots of bulb 1 and bulb 3 were so entrenched (bulb 1 tangled up in the plastic of the crate, bulb 3 dug into the dirt) that I decided not to move them until after they go dormant. I was able to get bulb 2 loose pretty easily, so I went ahead and repotted that one.

Also, you'll see that bulb 3 is even starting to grow a tiny bulblet!

We'll have to wait til spring to be sure, but right now I can pretty confidently state that yes, at least some waxed bulbs CAN be saved. :-)

(Notes: In this case, I selected the healthiest bulbs I could find on a markdown rack at Lowes. Once I got the bulbs to my dad's house -- he was bedridden, and they were to give him something cheerful to look at -- I made holes in the wax and kept them watered as you would water an amaryllis bulb kept on gravel. After they were through blooming, I peeled off the wax and pulled out the wire, then let the bulbs sit as pictured below. I would personally advise not planting in dirt right away, as that might invite rot into the holes where the wire had been -- but that's just a personal guess. It would probably have been better for the bulbs if I had peeled the wax and removed the wire immediately, but I didn't.)


Thumb of 2020-09-15/Amazindirt/94c266 bulb 1



Thumb of 2020-09-15/Amazindirt/9519a4bulb 2 -- 01



Thumb of 2020-09-15/Amazindirt/1534fdbulb 2 -- 02



Thumb of 2020-09-15/Amazindirt/da89d4bulb 3 -- 01



Thumb of 2020-09-15/Amazindirt/7fef31bulb 3 -- 02



Thumb of 2020-09-15/Amazindirt/bf35b4bulb 3 -- 03

[Last edited by Amazindirt - Sep 15, 2020 10:49 AM (+)]
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Name: Barbara
Palm Coast, FL
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bsharf
Sep 16, 2020 5:47 AM CST

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I'm so glad that you posted these photos and described your treatment of the bulbs. That definitely gives hope that there is a future for at least some of the bulbs that have been dipped in wax. I still think you should submit this posting as a short article to the Saturday NGA newsletter.

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