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Mountain West Regional Reports

Amaryllis: A Long-Blooming, Time-Tested Seasonal Showstopper

Stock up on proven cultivars for the winter season, and discover new favorites

This ‘Christmas Gift’ amaryllis has greenish-white petals that will make you long for fresh spring blooms! Photo: Mary Ann Newcomer

The old adage is true: “The early bird gets the worm.” Or in this case, the early shopper gets first choice of the newest, most unusual, and most beautiful amaryllis (Hippeastrum spp. and cvs., Zones 8–10) cultivars. Amaryllis are the tall, tropical-looking trumpet-shaped beauties that carry the most ardent gardeners and their friends through winter. You know who you are.

Why am I telling you to order them now, when winter is months away? The biggest and best bulbs can take 10 to 12 weeks to bloom. That’s up to three months! In fact, if you find some of the more exotic, newer varieties of amaryllis online, it is worth a phone call to the seller to ensure that the bulbs will arrive in time for you to plant them and bring them to bloom in time for Christmas—or New Year’s. You can also purchase bulbs later, at local nurseries, most…

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