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Amaryllis and yellow leaves

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2006
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by Dragonfly Blue13 on October 16, 2006 05:55 AM

I was given a amaryllis plant that was planted in a pot earlier this year in the summer sometime. When I received it the leaves were green and healthy looking, the plant was nearly 2 feet tall. It has the leaves coming out of the main bulb, plus 2 shoots of groups of leaves coming up out of the dirt at either side of the bulb. The plant has not flowered its first time yet since it was just planted in summer. I don't intend to force the plant to flower this winter, I plant to keep it as a year round plant and let it flower when it normally would, which I understood would be spring.

The leaves are starting to yellow now. Its not all the leaves, but a few of them. A couple of them died all the way back and I removed them. A few more are slowly yellowing. Since the plant hasn't flowered yet, is this normal? I don't know if something is wrong that I need to adjust or if this is what to expect since I've never owned an amaryllis before. I have moved the plant closer to a west facing window than I originally had it. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks. [dunno]
by Jiffymouse on October 16, 2006 05:57 AM
this is normal. amaryllis leaves do die back. and it is the time for them to die back. although, mine are not beliving that. they are threatening to bloom soon [dunno]
by Dragonfly Blue13 on October 16, 2006 08:45 AM
Thank you for the help [Smile]

The person who sent me the plant growns his in pots year round. I'm curious, do you grow them year round or force the several bloom times during the year, as described here ?

by Star Dancer on October 16, 2006 06:01 PM
Amaryllis usually only bloom once a year. After blooming, it is natural for the leaves to slowly die back, nourishing the bulb to produce the next blooms.

I, too, prefer not to force my holiday plants to bloom by a target date, mostly because chances are I'll totally forget about something tucked away 8 weeks ago. If you choose not to force dormancy, the natural process can be aided by you.

Reduced light, cool temperatures, and drought are important factors which trigger the dormancy and rebloom cycle. Reduced light and cooling temperatures of shortening days trigger dormancy and lights and central heating of homes can disrupt the cycle. Best if you can keep the Amaryllis in a little-used room kept as cool as possible. It doesn't have to be in total darkness (I keep the shades and window open) but be careful not to turn on unnecessary lights.

In dormancy, the plant's need for water is reduced. Amaryllis stores water in its stalk, which is the last of the foliage to die. By then the bulb has plenty stored water to make it through dormancy. When you then water the plant, water will be again soon stored in the emerging stalk. It's a plant that needs to dry out between waterings.

by margaret e. pell on October 16, 2006 10:20 PM
My amaryllis are dying back now, too. As soon as the soil in their pots is completely dry, I'll put them in my closet, along with the amorphophallus(sp?), until February. They bloom every year and then go outside for the summer. I've never tried to keep one in leaf year round; that just doesn't seem respectful of the plant's natural rhythms.

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may God bless the WHOLE world!
by Dragonfly Blue13 on October 17, 2006 10:32 AM
Thank you so much for the help. [Smile] I greatly appreciate it, most resources I could find talk about forcing the bulbs.
by Jiffymouse on October 17, 2006 11:27 AM
truthfully, mine are hardy here, so they are in the ground, being silly about the time of year. sometimes here, they will bloom twice.
by angelblossom on October 23, 2006 06:04 AM
Originally posted by Jiffymouse:
truthfully, mine are hardy here, so they are in the ground, being silly about the time of year. sometimes here, they will bloom twice.
I'm glad you said that Jiffy! G~MOM sent me some and I put them in the ground nice and green and has grown but it doesn't show any sign of blooming yet!

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Sorrow looks back, Worry looks around, Faith looks up!  -  -  -  -
by cinta on October 28, 2006 06:07 AM
I have 8 now. For 5 years I keep mine growing year round as a houseplant. They bloom between Jan - March.

Mine go outside all summer in sun and fertilized 2- 3 times a month.

In Oct I bring them in and water less but they are not in the dark. They are on the coffee table where they received light from the window. The leaves start to die back but all the leaves never die back.

The dark closet dry instructions is to force the bulb to bloom at a certain time. They bloom when I need flowers the most in late winter.

People have repeated the forcing method so long they think that is natural. As Jiffymouse and angelblossom have said if you keep them growing year round you can get two blooms a year. This year I got blooms in Jan and one is blooming now.

The other bonus of growing them year round is your bulbs will muliply because the bulb is healthy and constantly nourished.

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If you want the rainbow you have to put up with the rain!!

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