extending growth cycle of summer dormant bulbs?

Justin Smith oothal@hotmail.com
Sat, 01 May 2010 17:26:45 PDT
Hi All,
 I have had my best season ever of starting my fleshy amaryllid seed out of season keeping them growing summer-winter to go dormant this spring. Though I have nowhere near the experience that most people have here. 


I don't have any secrets though I have gleaned a lot of info from the many voices here. 

This is what I did and had very nice results.

I had Haemanthus, Brunsvigia, Strumaria, Gethyllis among others.
Once I received the seeds from South Africa I let them sit in my room. This is only for my convenience as to spring time is very busy for me and my disability does not let me get things done in a timely fashion. Once I have my regular spring doings done, I turned my attention to the Amaryllids.
I place each species into a plastic bag with a wet paper towel. Placed in my fridge and relaxed for a little bit. The moisture and cold temps really make the seeds sprout like mad. I keep a very close eye on them. Once sprouting is over, I pot them up immediately and place them outside under a plastic roof with 50% light transmission. The time period for potting them up is narrow, a few days, taking too long to pot them up they will start to rot (rot = bad) in the plastic bag.  
Since they are covered from unpredictable summer rains I am able to control their moisture very easily. The seedling bulbs seem to survive summer heat just fine. I have them in pots made of 2 ltr bottles, resting on the ground.
My soil mix is 50-70% coarse sand mixed with potting soil. With 1.5 inches (3.8 cm) of lava rock in the bottom to help with drainage. Holes in bottom of bottle are long and narrow to facilitate adequate drainage and air movement.

I don't keep track of solstice, equinox, day temps, sunlight length, night temps or heat index. (wow solstice and equinox passed hotmail spell check.)


When the leaves die back I stop watering and set to the side. 




Woodville, TX 8b/9a  






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