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Forcing Bulbs Indoors and Getting your Amaryllis Bulb to Rebloom

Category: How-To Projects, Plant Ideas & Info, Presenting "The Curious Gardener"

Dorian Winslow

womanswork presents dorian winslow's

the curious gardener

If you received a free package of three Hyacinth bulbs, they are ready to be potted up indoors as soon as you get them. This is because they have spent the winter in a cool warehouse in Pennsylvania. (For other Spring blooming bulbs, you need to put them in a cool, refrigerated location for 6-8 weeks before potting them up indoors.)

Follow these instructions for forcing your bulbs to bloom this Spring indoors:

  • Fill a pot (6″ diameter or more) with potting soil or a soilless mix purchased at a garden center or home center. Make sure your pot has good drainage to prevent bulbs from rotting.
  • Plant the bulbs, pointy end up, so that the top of the bulb is about 1/2″ below the soil surface.
  • Water moderately. Keep moist but do not over water. Once the bulbs are ready to bloom, water a bit more heavily, but do not soak. Keep in a sunny or well lighted area.

Green growth will emerge within 10-15 days. Wait approximately 3-4 weeks for blooms. When your bulbs have finished blooming put them in a dark, cool place. You can plant them outdoors in the Fall and watch them emerge the following Spring, or keep them indoors for forcing again next Spring.

Dorian’s amaryllis bulb reblooming again this year

Getting your Amaryllis Bulb to Rebloom: (courtesy of Ruth Clausen)

After the blooms finish, cut off the dead flowers to stop the plants from using energy to produce seed. Cut the stalk as well. Leave the leaves intact and keep the plant under the same growing conditions as before until it warms up outdoors.

In the summer put the pot out of doors in a lightly shaded place for some R & R. Be alert for slugs that hide underneath the pot. Water regularly and fertilize lightly through summer. As fall arrives, bring the plant indoors and begin to withhold water slowly. The leaves will gradually dry out and shrivel.

Keep the soil dry or very barely damp until you notice a small green leaf starting to grow, and then water as usual.  Within a few weeks you’ll notice a new flower bud emerging between the leaves.

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