Friday, January 15, 2010

Timing is everything

January sunshine streams through the petals of this amaryllis and paints petal edges with a touch of yellow.

Long before Thanksgiving we were cruising the aisles at Menards when we spotted a display of amaryllis bulbs. Your choice, red or white, each 5 bucks. Well alrighty then, let's take a red one -- for $5 the promise of bodacious blooms for Christmas is a lot cheaper than Prozac. I had the bulb potted up within a week, taking care to use my own plastic pot. (The pot that came with the bulb had no drainage. I don't get it -- drainage is everything.) Anyway, according to my estimates, I was about eight weeks from bloom and right on schedule for the holidays. But .... no. The buds only began showing color about a week ago.

Well, different varieties of amaryllis take varying lengths of time to flower. And, well, big-box home improvement stores probably aren't the best source of these bulbs. They're good for a cheap hit of color or texture or fragrance, but you have to be comfortable with the quality of handling and information you're getting. 

No matter, the amaryllis has bloomed and actually, I'm probably enjoying it more now without the competition from the tree and other holiday decorations.

If you want to know more about timing amaryllis read this .

Smooth, shapely buds are pretty in a quieter way.

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