Sunday, March 4, 2012

Aunt Ruth's Award-Winning Amaryllis!

"Bread feeds the body, indeed, but flowers feed also the soul."  The Koran  
Photo Credits Paul Butler



Merry mum!

Well, I am SO excited to present this post today as we have been eagerly awaiting this topic! My Aunt Ruth is an award-winning gardener who is known for her amazing amaryllis! Today she is going to share with us her secrets to growing those beautiful flowers!

We are trying a new thing! A Podcast! For those of you who don't know what a podcast is, it's like listening to the radio interview of someone. So,bear with me, it is my first attempt at podcasting and I have no idea what the results will be! You have a couple of ways you can access this information. You can either listen to the podcast (hopefully it will work on your computer), you can read a written synopsis of the podcast, or you can click on the link and download the audio file to listen to on your own device.

1. PODCAST Here is the link to the actual podcast.

2. Here is the written synopsis:
Aunt Ruth was originally given an amaryllis in 1976 as a Christmas present. She was hooked! Soon, she was buying her own; in fact the very next one she bought (just in a bin) ended up being a Best of Show winner!

Best of Show 1990

The Dutch people brought amaryllis from Africa and started them in the United States. She has them in many colors -red to red orange white, mini red, pink, salmon and  white with red stripe, to name a few.

When growing your amaryllis, she picks a location that gets morning sun from the East and afternoon sun from the West. She waters once a week.

From  December to January she feeds liquid Miracle Gro to them once a month. She feeds them their favorite snack, compost tea!They do not handle the frost so she covers them when there is danger of frost.

 Although the amaryllis like to be crowded, they shouldn't be TOO crowded and need to be repotted if this happens. Put into a pot with soil halfway up the bulb. When parting out older bulbs, be sure to wash the bulb off so you can clearly see the smaller mini bulbs as well. She had some as small as her thumbnail!
When you get a Christmas bulb or kit, those are 'forced' bulbs, or ones which are forced to bloom before their regular bloom time. So, for example, if you received an amaryllis at Christmas 2011, it will not bloom again until Spring 2013. Their regular bloom time is the end of March, April or May. In direct sunlight or Santa Ana wind conditions, the blooms will last about a day. In the shade, blooms will last a week to ten days, but take longer to bloom.

Aunt Ruth and Amaryllis Friend
If you are lucky you can sometimes get two stalks at a time. You must be patient! She had a mini-amaryllis that did not bloom for 18 years! She finally told them, "Okay fellows!If you don't bloom this year, out you go! I'll give your spot to someone else." Well, they bloomed! (Guess they heard her!). 

Once they bloom be sure you use snail or slug treatment immediately as every snail within 100 miles will be ready for dinner! She recommends Sluggo, or using crushed eggshells around the plant (a great alternative if you have pets or are going organic!).

 Her favorite memory about amaryllis was when her garden club friend moved and gave everybody at the garden club bulbs to plant. She had planted them straight in the ground at her house and when they bloomed, there was a drift of them and they looked so pretty!

So, with a lot of patience, you will be rewarded with beautiful flowers for all to enjoy!

3. Here's the link to the audio file if the above podcast would not work for you.

You Might Be White Trash IF...
  • The Halloween pumpkin on your porch has more teeth than your spouse
  • You let your twelve year daughter smoke at the dinner table in front of her kids
  • Last year you hid Easter eggs under cow pies
  • You've been married three times but still have the same in-laws
  • You think someone who is 'out of your league' bowls on a different night
  • Anyone in your family ever died after saying "Hey y'all, watch this!"
  • Your sister's hairdo was once ruined by a ceiling fan
  • Your Junior/Senior prom had a daycare
  • You lit a match in the bathroom and your house exploded right off its wheels
  • You had to remove a toothpick for your wedding pictures
  • One of your kids was born on a pool table
  • Your toilet paper has page numbers on it
  • You have flowers planted in a bathroom fixture in your front yard


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Betty said...

hahahahahaha I loved your redneck jokes & put them on FB so all my friends can see them!

Aunt Ruth said...

Well a correction for tomorrow. The amaryllis are sleeping as is the rest of the garden here in Dec. and Jan. They do not get fed in those two months. The rest of the year from Feb to Nov. I usually feed them Miracle Grow once a month with their water. Sorry about that, I guess I wasn’t very clear on that point.