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5.1.11

Amaryllis 'Charisma' Hippeastrum

I find the tropical bulbs commonly referred to as Amaryllis to be almost the perfect houseplant for any indoor gardener. I can't sing the praises of the Amaryllis enough. Well, technically of the Hippeastrum, but Amaryllis just sounds so much nicer. The inflorescence-flower stalk-emerges from a bulb and puts on a showy display of exotic, colorful flowers. If pollinated, the blooms can produce seeds pods, otherwise the flowers wither and die and are replaced by strappy green leaves. Once you've observed that first bloom, of even the most common Amaryllis bulb, you'll be left wanting more. Over the past few years I've collected several bulbs and my latest is "Charisma."

Amaryllis 'Charisma' Hippeastrum


'Charisma' is a standard Amaryllis that produces a medium-sized flower with a blood-red center that fades out to a pinkish hue, eventually to white, and a red trim around the petals of the bloom. From the bulb emerge 2-3 flower stalks, mine produced two this year. Like with many plants and flowers the picture on the plant label may not look exactly like the flower that grows in your home or garden. Fortunately for me, 'Charisma' is less pink and more red than the plant label and the picture on various online Amaryllis bulb sellers. I've taken photos of the bloom in various lighting conditions and with different backgrounds to give you a better idea of what the bloom looks compared to what the sellers and growers of 'Charisma' have put online.

Amaryllis 'Charisma' Hippeastrum, Indoors

In the top picture the Amaryllis is placed in a foyer on a bright day. Here 'Charisma' is growing indoors in the living room near a window on an overcast day.

Amaryllis 'Charisma' flower, Hippeastrum

'Charisma' again indoors on the same day near a brighter window with a white background.

Amaryllis Hippeastrum 'Charisma' outdoors

During a snow melt I took 'Charisma' outside on an overcast day to take a picture of the flower in natural light. This is what she looked like.


Amaryllis Hippeastrum 'Charisma' flower

Here is a detail photo of 'Charisma.' I'm not sure what's so "charismatic about 'Charisma.' Where I a professional Amaryllis grower or marketer I would've campaigned to name this Amaryllis 'High-Velocity Blood Splatter.' To keep it family friendly maybe, Amaryllis 'Wine Spit-Take.'  I'm glad I took a chance on this Amaryllis when I spotted it at the garden center this winter. It isn't as pink as it looked on the bulb label and it has gotten a lot of attention from guests.

How to Pot an Amaryllis Bulb.



Potting an Amaryllis is really easy. In this garden video I'll explain how I choose a pot, how to place your Amaryllis bulb in a pot and how to water your Amaryllis the first time.

How to Pollinate an Amaryllis Flower.



Amaryllis bulbs can be very expensive to buy, especially for the nicer variety of bulbs. Fortunately, pollinating an Amaryllis bulb's flower to produce seeds is very easy. When you pollinate a bloom you're sexually propagating a plant. In this garden video I show you how easy it is to pollinate an Amaryllis flower and what the seed pods look like.

How to Propagate an Amaryllis Vegetatively.



Sexual propagation of Amaryllis bulbs takes time, you have to pollinate the flower, wait for the seeds to develop, then sow the seeds and wait about three years before the bulb is mature enough to bloom. Asexually propagating an Amaryllis bulb is just as easy. In this garden video I show you how you can propagate your plant by taking cuttings of your bulb.

For more on Amaryllis bulbs you can visit my Amaryllis bulb blog. It is devoted exclusively to growing Amaryllis bulbs and I'll be updating it soon with pictures of the bulbs in my collection.

20 comments:

  1. She looks pretty darn charismatic to me! What a stunner!

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  2. Hi MBT,

    I also love amaryllis. I ordered the Christmas type this year, much smaller and half the wait for bloom. However, I did have the large ones last year. I like them all! I did mine in water and stones this year so if I want to save them I guess I had better plant them in some soil.

    Eileen

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  3. Three great videos! I had no idea that Amaryllis grew seed pods. I'll have to try this one year!

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  4. The videos are great, and I think 'Charisma' is very pretty (but I do like your alternate names better.)

    So far, I only have the more common amaryllis -- 'Red Lion' and 'Apple Blossom' -- I bought them on after-Christmas clearance last year from HD. I can definitely see getting more involved with them -- I have been coveting green amaryllis ever since You Grow Girl started tweeting about her 'Green Dragon.' I think I'd like 'Charisma' too.

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  5. MGT, she's lovely. I did not get an amaryllis this year - much the pity - but do most years. They are a wonderful addition to the winter house. Thanks for sharing 'Charisma'.

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  6. Who KNOWs where the reasoning for plant names comes from? I think I like High Velocity Blood Spatter for a name, and I know Dexter would approve! Excellent photography, as always.

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  7. Oh, man, what gorgeous photography! That second photo down is stunning! I haven't gotten into any bulbs yet, but seriously want to...cost is keeping me at bay. I also agree with 'Daffodil Planter', that this sure does look charismatic! I love it!

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  8. Thanks for showing how to pollinate in the video. Will definitely try to do this once I have the chance. Your A. charisma is a beauty! Happy New Year to you and your loved ones.

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  9. Wow, that is a gorgeous bloom!! I have had one Amaryllis bulb for a few years and have never seen the bloom. I read some instructions on how to get it to bloom and it's currently in the resting phase. I can only hope it's half as beautiful as yours!! :-)

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  10. Amaryllis has always just been one of those exotic plants that I'm sure I would love if I tried it. Why haven't I? No good answer to that question. Maybe it takes a charismatic gardener to grow them. That plant of yours is a beauty.

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  11. Gorgeous photos MBT! You sure do have a way with amaryllis. I remember way back when I first discovered garden blogs and found yours. It was about this time of year and your amaryllis bulbs were blooming. I'll always think of you whenever I see amaryllis blooms!

    I love them, but just don't have the knack for getting them to rebloom even though I've had nice big, fat bulbs and follow the directions on how to take care of them. I think here the problem might be not enough sun in the summer. Mine once again produced leaves only (and a bonus offset bulb.) I'm determined to get the thing to rebloom before I buy any more bulbs!

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  12. Nothing quite compares to the Amaryllis and you've done an excellent job on this post, from sharing planting instructions to pollinating the flowers! I'm impressed and, thus, am a new follower.

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  13. I guess that was your inspiration for your logo? I'm impresssed at your knowledge and passion for these lovely flowers. I'll have to give one a try next year.

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  14. That is an amazing photo! your flower looks so beautiful. I wish I had one too

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  15. We grow amaryllis and hippeastrum outside here. Lucky us! But they are the favorite food of the giant lubbers, so are at constant peril. Incidentally, amaryllis come from Africa and hippeastrum from S. America. Check out H. papilio, the butterfly amaryllis, which is native to Brazil. I have a bunch in pots. Stunning flower!

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  16. Great photos, MBTh! They're wonderful plants - esp. when the blossoms look like yours! :-)

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  17. This is probably the wrong time to say I just threw out (well, composted) my two amaryllis bulbs because that's how much of a houseplant hata I am, and I needed room for my new damn orchid... I really love the blooms, and it's awesome to see them here... I just have no room. Sigh.

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  18. Beautiful Charismas as well as beautiful photography!
    Thank you for the useful videos on pollination...going to try and collect seed pods for the time this year!

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  19. Sandra, Sorry for the late reply. Hope you got those seeds collected and you got some sprouts.

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  20. Hi Mr. BrownThumb! We just blogged your video on How to Plant an Amaryllis bulb at www.QuestionAndPlanter.com! Let us know if you want any changes! It's amazing how thorough you are in such a short video! Have a GREAT day!

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Hi!

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