What makes Amaryllis hybrids bloom?

Billthebulbbaron@aol.com Billthebulbbaron@aol.com
Tue, 25 Aug 2009 08:16:59 PDT
In a message dated 8/24/09 11:10:44 PM, mikemace@att.net writes:

> maybe the
> thing to do is give them extra water *in the winter*
In Carmel Valley I had been in the habit of cutting off watering in April, 
but in one section the water timer was coming on after that, unbeheknownst 
to me, at night, presumably once a week, but possibly even nightly.   I 
didn't catch this til the first of June, when everything else had dried off and 
there was this one section where the amaryllis were still fully green.   So I 
shut it off and watched for any difference in growth.   I left that area 
and the adjoining plantings dry until around the first of August when stems 
were appearing.   There were 2-3 times as many flower stems from the 
overwatered area, but they bloomed later, presumably due to the later start of summer 

A landscaper customer of mine in Danville says she has splendid bloom from 
them each year, her method of growing is the same as for the rest of the 
landscapes she does--they get 3 minutes of water a day thru the drippers, all 
year (except it is turned off during rainy periods).   This is in clay soil 
under mulch.   She says everything (presumably trees, shrubs, and perennials) 
does better under this watering regimen.

For me, bloom increases each year (I grow only the hybrid type), and I 
water on well into May, but it doesn't have to be all that often, especially 
given there is alot of clay and subsurface moisture where they are now in Moss 
Landing.   Once they start emerging, watering a couple tmes a month, 
facilitates digging selected plants for sale, and good quality tall stems for 
picking.   The first watering in particular triggers a very large number of 
stems, left alone they straggle in more irregularly, so leaving some areas dry 
longer can facilitate a longer flowering season.

This year has been the most spectacular bloom season ever, I left alot 
unpicked to facilitate selecting and a little more hybridizing.   One thing that 
has surprised me in this usually foggy (in the summer) coastal climate, is 
the excellent bloom I am also getting on some seed-grown Brunsvigia 
josephinae, these all blooming for the first time in their lives, at approx 8 years 
of age.   One is in bloom now (59 florets) and there are 7 more about to 
open, all looking large and healthy.   They are in good, rich somewhat heavy 
dark-colored soil over clay, and have sized up really well since I planted 
them out here.

Best wishes,

Bill the Bulb Baron (William R.P. Welch)
click here for (updated): Availability List
full website: http://www.billthebulbbaron.com/

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payable to William R.P. Welch, 1031 Cayuga Street Apt B, Santa Cruz, CA 95062, 
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