Gardeners love to plant amaryllis plants for their beautiful trumpet-shaped flowers that bloom in several different shades from yellow to orange. These exotic flowers are attention-getters and will certainly bring attention to your lawn or home. But should you deadhead amaryllis flowers? And if so, how do you do this? We have researched the answer to this question for you, and in this post, we will go over it.
You should deadhead amaryllis plants after all of their flowers have died. Here are the basic steps for doing so:
- Clean your pruning shears
- Locate the flower's stalk
- Throw away the dead flowers
- Water the bulb
Amaryllis plants are unique in the sense that they will require more attention to reflower for consecutive seasons. If you want to reflower your plant, you'll need to follow certain steps to ensure that the plant's bulb remains healthy and vital during the dormant season. Continue reading to learn more about how to make this happen.
Steps to Deadhead an Amaryllis
The flowers of an amaryllis plant are individually attached to the plant's main stalk. The thin stem that attaches the flower to the stalk will need to be cut after all of the plant's flowers have died. Let's take a closer look at how to do it.
Things you'll need:
- Pruning shears
- Clorox wipes or rubbing alcohol
- Trash bags
1. Clean your pruning shears
First, sanitize your pruning shears with alcohol wipes or with a cotton ball and rubbing alcohol. Using dirty shears risks the threat of disease to your amaryllis.
2. Locate the flower's stalk
Find the thin stem that attaches to each flower. Next, grab the dead flower and, while holding it, cut the flower at the stem. Be sure to cut the stem as precisely as possible and be sure not to break it away from the stalk, as this could leave the area open to disease. Then cut the stalk down so that it is only 2 inches away from the base of the plant.
3. Throw away the dead flowers
Next, toss the dead flowers in a trash bag. Components of the flower can be poisonous to both dogs and cats.
4. Water the bulb
If you plan to re-bloom your amaryllis plant, be sure to water it immediately after deadheading it. This is needed so the leaves can process energy and transfer it to the bulb for future blooms. You don't need to overwater it, just water it as you normally would.
When Should You Cut Back Amaryllis?
Amaryllis plants, like most plants, will need pruning at certain times of the year during their growing season so they can remain healthy and vibrant. It's important to note that pruning this plant too soon can harm its ability to bloom in the following seasons. This is due to the bulb of the plant needing the energy from the foliage to stay vibrant.
Before pruning the plant, be sure to thoroughly sanitize your cutting tools and only prune the plant when it needs it. This is usually when the flowers have faded completely, and the stalk begins to turn a yellow or brownish hue.
When trimming the stalk, try to trim off no more than an inch above the plant's bulb and be careful not to cut the plant's foliage. And if you're only pruning the foliage, it's best to wait until it is has turned completely yellow or brown before doing so.
How Do You Care For Amaryllis After It Has Bloomed?
It's important to take good care of amaryllis plants after they flower. To do this, there are specific steps that you need to follow up with to ensure that the plant will be good to go next season. Let's take a closer look at them.
Deadheading is necessary only if you plan to reflower the plant for the next growing season. You'll first want to remove any of the dead blooms from the plant as this will prevent them from going to seed. Keep in mind that you only need to remove brown or yellow stalks or ones that have begun to wither.
The next thing you'll want to do is place the amaryllis plant in the brightest spot in your home. If you have a south-facing window, this is the perfect place for the plant. This will allow the leaves of the amaryllis plant to photosynthesize and create energy to store in the bulb needed for future blooms.
Keep in mind that the actively growing plant will need frequent watering as well as fertilizer. Amaryllis plants prefer liquid or granular fertilizer with an even NPK ratio of 10-10-10 or another slow-release all-purpose fertilizer. It's best to apply the fertilizer about every 3 to 4 months.
Once the potential risk of frostbite has passed after the winter months, you can move the amaryllis plant outside for the spring, where it can be exposed to more sunlight. Be sure to make this a slow and steady process to prevent its foliage from becoming burnt. Try to expose the amaryllis plant to sunlight for a longer period of time each day. It's best to start at 1 or 2 hours and increase the length of time gradually.
For the amaryllis plant to bloom, you'll need to expose the bulbs to temperatures ranging from 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit for anywhere from 8 to 12 weeks. You can achieve this by inducing the plant into a dormant state and then storing the bulb at a temperature between 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
To do this, place the bulb in a semi-dark location in the last few weeks in September. Ensure that you have removed all of the foliage from the leaves after turning yellow or brown. You'll also need to water the bulb to start the growth cycle and then place it in a well-lit location, anywhere from 70 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Be sure to keep the plant's soil moist but not too wet--you'll need to do this until new growth appears.
You don't need to re-pot the amaryllis plant during its first blooming season, as it will grow best when it is a bit pot-bound. However, you may need to re-pot the plant about every 3 to 4 years as its roots grow thicker and longer. If you do re-pot the plant, be sure to remove all of the plant's soil with new fresh soil that is well-draining and moist. You'll then want to wait a few weeks before fertilizing the soil, however.
Will Amaryllis Bloom More Than Once?
You'll find that most amaryllis plants are sold around the holidays, and many growers will pitch the plant after the initial bloom. However, these common plants can be successfully bloomed all year round as long as they receive the right care.
For How Many Years Will An Amaryllis Bulb Bloom?
As long as it has proper care, the bulbs of these plants can continue to grow and produce balloons for several decades.
How Do You Keep Amaryllis From Growing Too Tall?
If your amaryllis plant is a tall-growing variety, it will continue to grow as exposed to light. However, this can become a problem if the plant can no longer support itself. Here are a few things that you can do to prevent this.
Find short varieties
Stay away from varieties that are known for growing fast and tall. This includes Royal Velvet and Mont Blanc varieties. Both of these varieties can grow a couple of inches in a period of two to three days, given they receive enough sunlight to produce energy. If you have a variety that is a tall-grower, you'll want to keep it in a room that's warm but with just adequate lighting, as opposed to abundant lighting. This will help to prevent it from growing too fast but will also keep it from dying.
Keep it cool
Keeping your plant in a location that has sufficient sunlight but that is on the cooler side temperature-wise can also prevent it from growing too tall. This will ensure that the stems grow sturdy and strong, but not as often as they would in warmer temperatures. Consider placing the plant in a room with a temperature of anywhere from 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit.
Choose A Small Bulb
When you are picking an amaryllis bulb to re-flower, try to choose one on the smaller side. Smaller amaryllis bulbs will produce smaller plants, and on average, a shorter plant overall. Keep in mind that the plant may, in turn, be more sturdy, so you may need to purchase a heavier plant pot so that it has sufficient support.
Wrapping Things Up
Amaryllis plants can make for beautiful houseplants that can re-flower every season. However, if you want to re-flower the plant, you'll need to ensure the bulb is stored well and maintained during the plant's non-growing season.
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