hippeastrum seedling

Thomas Glavich tglavich@sbcglobal.net
Sun, 28 Nov 2004 07:01:46 PST
I live in Southern California, and my conditions are different than yours, however, getting Hippeastrum to bloom is not too hard.  With luck you can get tetraploid blooms in 3 years, with average care 4.  
I grow my seedlings in group pots, usually 5.5 inch squares.  I start with about 20 seedling plants, and repot as the pot gets full, with the repotting taking place when the bulbs start to touch each other.  One seedling per pot would be fine as well.  Give it a bit more root room than you think it needs.  I use a light mix, pumice or perlite, coir and commercial potting soil.  Good drainage is important.  I fertilize whenever growing, usually with miracle grow, and generally put some commercial time release fertilizer in the pot as well.
If you can, keep the bulb from going dormant during the first two years.  Just feed it a lot, and keep it warm.  Sometimes they will go dormant anyway and there is nothing you can do.  The bulb should survive, it will just be slower.
When the bulbs get to be about the size of a golf ball, treat them as you would any commercially purchased bulb, allowing them to go dormant.
With you bulb out of the pot, it probably has already gone dormant.  I would give it a rest until late Dec or January, pot it up, water once or twice and see if it starts growing again.  If not, let it go until April and then get it going again.  
As you have already found out, Hippeastrum really like free root run.  If you get it back in the ground again after the last frost, you should do well quickly.  Don't be afraid to fertilize these, they are heavy feeders.


Dennis Kramb <dkramb@badbear.com> wrote:
About 4 years ago I purchased some Hippeastrums at the store. I attempted 
crossing different colored varieties with each other and got some 
seeds. Not knowing what I was doing, I planted them. Many sprouted, but 
eventually withered away. Suffice it to say, only one is now left.

About 2 years ago I learned "proper" care for mature Hippeastrums to get 
them to rebloom. A buddy taught me to plant them in my garden during the 
warm summer months, and then lift them in winter. It worked like a 
charm! So this past spring/summer I did the same with my seedling and it 
nearly doubled in size.... to approximately that of a grape.

At any rate, I recently lifted it and have it resting in my basement. I 
really would like to nurture this thing to bloom. I did a bit of Googling 
but couldn't find any good sites to get tips on raising them. Is there 
anyone on-line that could share a few pointers for me? I'm hoping that in 
2 years from now I can get it to be big enough to bloom.

Dennis in Cincy

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