Mention Christmas plants and one of the first to spring to mind is often the amaryllis, whose Latin name is Hippeastrum. And it’s aptly this month’s Houseplant of the Month. Available in a range of different colours including red, white, burgundy, pink, peach and orange, this festive flowering plant is so easy to grow from bulb in pots.
Allow about eight weeks for the flamboyant flowers to appear. Trumpet-like in shape, there are usually three or four blooms, and sometimes five, on each thick, hollow stem.
Amaryllis make such a perfect festive gift! They look wonderful in a row of identical or complementary pots. And you could add pussy willow or sparkly twigs, perhaps in a wigwam shape, to support the flowers.
Care wise, provide the plant with plenty of light, including a little direct sun. A warm temperature is needed for forcing the flower. But when in bloom, keep it in a cool place to prolong flowering. Water moderately until a shoot appears and then keep the compost moist whilst the plant is in leaf. It’s a good idea to regularly rotate the plant to prevent its stalks from growing towards the light.
If you’d like to learn more about this popular seasonal houseplant, take a read of my in-depth Amaryllis report for New Covent Garden Flower Market. It features a wide range of varieties, both as a bulb and cut flower.
* This post is brought to you in collaboration with The Flower Council of Holland. All the words are my own.
(Images : The Flower Council of Holland)