Featured Plant

HIPPEASTRUM

Hippeastrum, commonly mistaken for the Amaryllis, is a beautiful bulb plant that produces large and colourful bell-shaped flowers. Hippeastrum has been mistaken for the Amaryllis plant for centuries. While similar, the Amaryllis has only one species in its genus, the Amaryllis belladonna, and comes from South Africa, while the Hippeastrum hails from Central and South America with 90 species in its genus.

Hippeastrum are easy to take care of and bring to bloom. Hippeastrum are suitable to grow in hardiness zones 7 to 10. In Canada, this plant does best indoors. Plant the bulb, pointed-side up, in a 6 to 8-inch heavy pot and watch it produce gorgeous blossoms 7 weeks later. Hippeastrum bulbs prefer soil/sand mixtures, the soil should be kept barely moist until it begins to grow. Once it has grown an inch tall it should be kept damp but not soggy. Hippeastrum likes a lot of sun as it develops but once it blooms make sure to move it away from direct sunlight and sources of heat so that the flowers last as long as possible.

With some extra care, Hippeastrum can blossom year after year. After flowering, cut the stem to about 1 inch above the bulb and continue to water regularly; it will continue to grow leaves to build up energy for the next year’s bloom. Start withholding water in mid-august and let the foliage die naturally until the pot dries out completely. Let the bulb lie dormant in a cool, dark and dry place for at least 8 weeks. Re-pot the bulb in fresh potting soil to restart the bloom-cycle.

Sources:
Funny How Flowers Do That | Gardeners.com
 
Hippaestrum