Thursday, March 12, 2009

Re-potting amaryllis today

Well, it's 13 below zero this morning but the sunshine is here and very welcome...particularly after several blizzardy days on the northern plains. I decided today was a good day to re-pot something so started with the amaryllis that has been sitting in a cool closet since about mid November. I have many more houseplants that need to get new soil and bigger pots...maybe next week. Just really needed to get into some dirt and re-energize myself and watch something sprout soon!
I lifted the big bulbs right out of the pots with their dried up soil and all. Then I shook and teased off as much old potting soil as I could. I was happy to see all the healthy, fleshy white roots there. Then I cleaned out the pots in a sink of soapy water with a splash of bleach...rinsed well and dried. Next I put some new potting soil in the bottom and kind of teased it up the sides. I have learned to buy the best potting soil out there. Potting soil, I have learned, is not something you can economize on by getting the cheapest brand. My plants have done so much better since I learned this!
Oh, and I learned something else about the amaryllis bulb that I didn't pay attention to last year. I am a pressed flower/botanical artist and have been taking lessons on a wonderful guild I belong to...the World Wide Pressed Flower Guild. We have been extremely lucky enough to have several new Russian Oshibana artists teach master classes over the internet. What I have learned is to look at every organic thing as a potential for material in a pressed plant piece of art. And right there all around that bulb was the most beautiful bronze skin that needed to come off. In our last class we learned to use onion skin, banana peel and corn husk in our artwork. Well, I am saving a container of it and just know that it will fit somewhere in a future piece. If you want to see some examples of pressed flower/botanical art you can go to my website:
and find links to some beautiful pressed flower/botanical competition pieces at the recent Philadelphia Flower Show! (I will post more on the show soon!)
So back to my re-potting...I forgot to say that I added a (4 cup size) coffee filter in the bottom of the pots as the holes were big and didn't want the soil falling through. Works great! Then I added the soil and then placed the bulbs in so that the top of the bulbs remained about 1/3 above the soil. They both got a good drink of water til it ran out the bottom. I did let the water sit in an old gallon milk jug over night to leach out the chlorine and let it get to room temperature. Tooooooo cold right from the faucet! Then they went in a sunny window and soon I'll see something green and new and alive! Can't wait!

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