This flower is named after a shepherdess who had unrequited love for a gardener.
Each day she would walk to his door to impress him by piercing her own heart with a golden arrow. The blood that would drop to the ground would turn into scarlet flowers that would line his path. I don’t know if that shepherdess ever got her gardener, but I do know her name was Amaryllis.
This classic holiday bulb is easy to grow and, with a little care, you can get it to rebloom next year.
Amaryllis flowers are single or double in colors such as deep scarlet, white, salmon, pink, and striped. The latest craze is waxed amaryllis bulbs. They don't need a pot, soil, water, or care. Just stand them up in a brightly-lit window and they'll bloom.
For all other types, pot up amaryllis bulbs now into a container slightly larger than the bulb. Place them in a brightly lit, warm room and water sparingly. In a few months, your amaryllis should be in full flower. Cut back the flower stalk to the bulb when all the flowers have passed, but leave the leaves.
To get it to bloom again next year, grow the bulb indoors as a house plant until early summer. Move the pot outdoors into part shade, fertilize monthly and keep watered.
In early fall, cut back the leaves to two inches tall, stop watering, and place the bulb in a dark, 40- to 50-degree room to rest for six weeks. Then, bring it into the light and warmth again to bloom once more next winter.
Next week, I’ll be talking about Christmas trees. Until then, I’ll be seeing you in the garden.