Amaryllis can flower again and again for years. If the amaryllis does not bloom, but only leaves, something has gone wrong with care throughout the year.
The amaryllis, which is actually called the Knight’s Star (Hippeastrum), is a popular bulb flower in Advent because of its extravagant flowers. Often it is bought new in November, but you can also put amaryllis over the summer and make it bloom anew every year. For this to work, you have to look after it properly all year round – otherwise, it can happen that the onion will sprout a lot of leaves but no flowers. Here are the five most common reasons for this and how you can get your amaryllis to bloom.
Reason 1: The amaryllis was not properly fertilized
Blooming takes strength. Only well-nourished bulbs will flower. Waxed amaryllis strikingly shows this. It even blooms out of the bulging bulb without soil. However, the energy must be returned to the storage organ – through correct fertilization. When it comes to amaryllis, the timing is crucial.
After flowering and during the entire growth period (spring to July), the knight star is given full fertilizer. Do not use nitrogenous house plant fertilizers, for example for green plants. Too much nitrogen unilaterally promotes leaf growth. Flower fertilizers contain more phosphorus. And another tip: cut the flower stalk just above the bulb after it has bloomed.
This saves energy that does not have to be used for seed formation and goes into the onion. The leaves must be preserved. They feed the onion. From September onwards, the leaves are left to dry out and then cut off. Fertilizing is stopped in August.
Reason 2: you gave too much or too little moisture at the wrong time
Water is also part of the diet. However, watering amaryllis at the wrong time can ruin the flower. As soon as the fresh shoot is about ten centimeters long, it is watered regularly. Waterless from the end of July and stop watering completely towards the end of August. The onions must go into a resting phase. If you continue to water the amaryllis, the leaves will stay green and will not flower later. The reason for this: the natural vegetation rhythm of the plants is disturbed.
Reason 3: You did not pay attention to the resting phase of your amaryllis
Amaryllis need the autumn rest period to draw strength for new flowers. During September and October, the onions, therefore, rest in a darker location in dry soil with cool temperatures of around 16 degrees Celsius. When the first green shoots from the tip of the onion, around November, the dormant period is over. Now you put the onion in new potting soil and water it lightly. In addition to the water supply, the knight’s star aligns its rhythm of life with the temperature and amount of light.
Reason 4: You have chosen the wrong location with unfavorable temperatures
The location of the freshly planted amaryllis must be bright and sunny. If a hippeastrum is too dark, it will not bloom. Rising temperatures accelerate flowering. In winter, the amaryllis estimates daytime temperatures of 18 to 20 degrees Celsius and a night-time drop to around 16 degrees Celsius. Experience has shown that it is easier to plan the flowering for spring.
It is often difficult to achieve a flowering period from Christmas onwards under the conditions of domestic warmth. The amaryllis only loves cozy warmth in the growth phase from spring to summer. That is why you can also put them outside in the garden at 24 to 26 degrees Celsius.
Large-flowered knight star hybrids are particularly willing to flower. But all other quality varieties are also selected for abundant flowering. You can’t be sure about cheap offers. The onions provide a clue. Amaryllis bulbs must be healthy and should be at least eight inches in circumference.
Practice video: Amaryllis Done Blooming? Here’s What to Do
Julia N. Huston has been working as a freelance garden journalist for magazines and online media since 2011. She also produces press and advertising photos, video films and supports commercials with garden content as a set art director for various specialist companies, garden centers, and DIY stores. A further focus is the creation of press releases and brochures.
Julia N. Huston began her professional career with an apprenticeship as a gardener, specializing in ornamental horticulture. She then studied horticulture, graduating with a degree in horticultural engineering. After her training as an editor at the magazine "GARDEN INTERNATIONAL", she was a member of the editorial team of "FLORA & GARDEN" for 14 years. There, she initially dealt mainly with topics from the areas of balconies & terraces, houseplants, and ornamental gardens. Later, she took over responsibility for the practical magazine.