My son gave me a bulb for Christmas, as he’s done for the past couple of years, and the flower is getting ready to bloom.
This is a favorite gift of mine. It’s wonderful to have a lovely flower in the middle of winter, and the flower itself lasts a long time. Also, kids love it because once it starts growing, it grows really fast. You can literally see changes within the space of a single day.
I know that there are instructions for keeping your amaryllis bulbs and forcing them to bloom again in subsequent years, but I don’t do that. There was a point in my life when I still felt guilty about throwing plants like amaryllis and poinsettia away after blooming, because it is possible to get them to rebloom, if you’re willing to put some effort into the whole thing. Years ago, someone told me to treat them like cut flowers that last a long time; after they’re no longer pretty, chuck them into your compost pile without guilt. You enjoyed them, but it doesn’t mean you have to go through all of the work to keep them alive year to year.
I like that idea, so I now throw these types of plants away after they finish blooming, and I feel no guilt at all. One nice thing about having a compost pile is the knowledge that whatever you’re (correctly) throwing in there helps to make the compost pile better. So, the flower feeds my soul and then the plant feeds my compost pile.
And, since I’ve been able to count on my son for a new bulb every year, I’m still getting to enjoy a blooming amaryllis each winter!