The amaryllis is a winter flowering bulb that has large, bright trumpet shaped flowers. These flowers are usually associated with the Christmas Holiday season, which I'm certain has pagan origins; the flower, we all know the holiday was appropriated.

In early October, the bulb should be removed from the pot, have its roots washed of soil and then placed on the basement floor. Allow its leaves to dry off naturally. This signals the bulb to go into a dormant stage that it requires to flower again.

In about two months, remove the dried leaves and roots. The bulb should be planted in a pot 1'' to 2'' larger in diameter than the bulb. Place your amaryllis so that one half to two thirds of the bulb is above the soil line in a mixture of two parts potting soil to one part sand, perlite or vermiculite. this will ensure proper drainage and prevent root rot. Water immediately and place in a cool, bright room, out of direct sunlight.

Once top growth appears, place the plant in a sunny window. Be sure to rotate it every day or so to prevent it from leaning to one side. You can extend the life of the flowers by removing the long pollen-bearing stamens with tweezers. When the flowers wither, cut the flower stalk about 2'' above the bulb, but leave the leaves! Give your amaryllis a monthly fertilizer to keep it healthy and happy, and ensure a good flowering next year.

Lather, rinse, and repeat when necessary.

Edwin Arlington Robinson

Once, when I wandered in the woods alone,
An old man tottered up to me and said,
"Come, friend, and see the grave that I have made
For Amaryllis." There was in the tone
Of his complaint such quaver and such moan
That I took pity on him and obeyed,
And long stood looking where his hands had laid
An ancient woman, shrunk to skin and bone.

Far out beyond the forest I could hear
The calling of loud progress, and the bold
Incessant scream of commerce ringing clear;
But though the trumpets of the world were glad,
It made me lonely and it made me sad
To think that Amaryllis had grown old.

From Psalmes, sonnets & songs of sadness and pietie, 1588, by William Byrd

Though Amaryllis dance in green

Like fairy queen

And sing full clear
Corinna can with smiling cheer
Yet sith their eyes make hearts so sore
Hey ho, 'chill love no more. 

My sheep are lost for want of food,

And I so wood,

That all the day,
I sit and watch a herdmaid gay,
Who laughs to see me sigh so sore,
Hey ho, 'chill love no more. 

Her loving looks, her beauty bright

Is such delight,

That all in vain
I love to like and lose my gain,
For her that thanks me not therefor,
Hey ho, 'chill love no more. 

Ah, wanton eyes, my friendly foes,

And cause of woes,

Your sweet desire
Breeds flames of ice and freeze in fire.
Ye scorn to see me weep so sore,
Hey ho, 'chill love no more. 

("'chill"= "I will")

Am`a*ryl"lis (#), n. [L. Amaryllis, Gr. , , the name of a country girl in Theocritus and Virgil.]


A pastoral sweetheart.

To sport with Amaryllis in the shade. Milton.

2. bot. (a)

A family of plants much esteemed for their beauty, including the narcissus, jonquil, daffodil, agave, and others.


A genus of the same family, including the Belladonna lily.


© Webster 1913.

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