I've been following this discussion with interest. Amaryllis belladonna has been attempted on and off in eastern North America for the last two hundred years, and I'm not aware of any long term successes. Amaryllis belladonna was one of the first plants I obtained for my "cape bulb border" forty years ago when I was a teenager. As luck would have it, it bloomed once - and that was enough to convince me what a wonderful plant it is. Pot culture does not seem to be the answer. Digging the bulbs for the summer seems to be a mistake. I'm beginning to suspect that Amaryllis belladonna and Nerine sarniensis have similar requirements: those of us here in the east fail repeatedly with both of these. And I'm beginning to believe that cold winters - above freezing for the most part but still cold - are essential for these while they are in full leaf. If that's true, then cold frame culture might work here, and I'll be trying that with Nerine sarniensis this winter. I've seen the suggestion that Nerine sarniensis benefits from relatively cool summer temperatures; that might be true, but it certainly isn't necessary for Amaryllis belladonna - unless southern California summers are a lot cooler than I imagine. Jim McKenney Montgomery County, Maryland, USA, USDA zone 7, where even with a full moon I'm not ready to dance naked for my Amaryllis, but I might sing Caccini's song "Amarilli mia bella" and see what happens.