|'Ruby Star' in 2015 with Oncidium.|
I've been more selective about which Amaryllis bulbs to keep, especially now since the bulb world seems to have opened up. There are now some really exotic-looking varieties bred for strong stems, an increase in floral substance, size and number. Once you've walked on the exotic side with Hippeastrum (the true botanic name for these tropical bulbous plants), there is no going back to the wishy-washy-by-comparison types.
|'Ruby Star' in mid-February 2016|
Hippeastrum 'Ruby Star' was introduced and patented by a company in Israel called Saad Assaf Flower Bulb Nurseries under the series name Mediterranean Amaryllis. I fell in love with its photo on the Easy to Grow Bulbs website in the fall of 2014 and knew I had to have it. 'Ruby Star' first bloomed in January, 2015.
And it bloomed again in February, 2016! At this point in my Amaryllis-growing lifetime, 'Ruby Star' is probably my favorite so far.
|'Double King' March 8.|
|'Double King' in vase March 16.|
|'Double King' on right; 'Razzle Dazzle' on left.|
So when one of the dozen pots of Hippeastrum formed a bud, I was guessing it would be 'Sweet Lilian' or 'Pavlova'. I was surprised indeed when the flowers popped open and revealed themselves as another 'Razzle Dazzle'!
This is not to say I won't have any more Hippeastrum bloom this year. None of them currently are sporting buds, but that doesn't mean they won't. One of the drawbacks of growing these bulbs indoors is that they seem to bloom whenever they feel like it. Which, come to think of it, can also be an advantage.
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