Plant amaryllis bulbs indoors now for ‘beautiful’ festive blooms

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Amaryllis or hippeastrum, are known for their bell-shaped flowers which are often bright red. Due to their pretty, brilliantly-coloured blooms, many people put them in their homes in the winter.

It can be a lot of work growing amaryllis indoors but the end result is a festive flower that will last well into the new year.

Amaryllis bulbs are actually ready to bloom around now (November) with most stalks producing two to four flowers.

To successfully grow amaryllis from bulbs, gardeners need to keep the plant well-watered and out of harm.

Gardener Laetitia Maklouf has shared how to plant amaryllis bulbs indoors in a video for the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS).

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She said: “Hippeastrums are typically given as Christmas gifts but they’re a great way of adding glamour and drama and colour into the bleak months that follow before spring appears.

“You can get hippeastrums bulbs in winter and plant them indoors and they will grow into the most beautiful houseplants.

“The materials you need for this are your bulbs, a pot to plant them in, you need bulb fibre or potting soil and a watering can.

“Soak your bulb first in warm water to let it know that it’s time to start growing.

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“Then simply place the bulb on a layer of bulb fibre or potting soil and fill with more fibre.

“You want to leave up to two-thirds of the bulb showing above the surface of the compost.

“Pack the soil around the bulb, giving the plant a good foundation for when it’s time to flower because these plants can become very top-heavy.

“Stand the pot in a bright, warm place and water it sparingly until you can see some action.

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“After that, water it regularly just to keep the soil consistently moist. Turn the pot every day so that the stems grow evenly.

“To extend the flowering period, move the plant to a cooler room.

“Within only six to eight weeks you’ll end up with an enormous hippeastrum that’s absolutely beautiful.”

Once amaryllis flowers are gone, the plant needs to be replenished.

After the flowering stage, the plant’s bulb is depleted of minerals but the stalks remain in place.

Cut the tops off the stalks down and leave the leaves in place. This will allow the plant to start its re-flowering process.

When growing the plant indoors, it’s important to fertilise it every two to three weeks.

It will also need to be watered around twice a week. Keep it out of direct sunlight for long periods of time.

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