A Bud of a Neighbor

The Beautification Committee would like to thank Taylor Morris for his generous donation of the bountiful red amaryllis last year. The bulbs were planted on the island at Colorado/Kessler Parkway, where they took root and displayed their signature red flower clusters this spring for all to enjoy.

Amaryllis belladonna was introduced into cultivation at the beginning of the eighteenth century from South Africa. It reproduces slowly by either bulb division or seeds. It has gradually naturalized on the West Coast since these environments mimic their native habitat. Hardiness zones are 6-8. It is also naturalized in Australia.

There is an Amaryllis belladonna hybrid which was bred in the 1800s in Australia. No one knows the exact species it was crossed with to produce color variations of white, cream, peach, magenta and nearly red hues. The hybrids were crossed back onto the original Amaryllis belladonna and with each other to produce naturally seed-bearing crosses that come in a very wide range of flower sizes, shapes, stem heights and intensities of pink. Pure white varieties with bright green stems were bred as well. The hybrids are quite distinct in that the many shades of pink also have stripes, veining, darkened edges, white centers and light-yellow centers, also setting them apart from the original light pink. In addition, the hybrids often produce flowers in a fuller circle rather than the “side-facing” habit of the “old-fashioned” pink. The hybrids can adapt to year-round watering and fertilization but can also tolerate completely dry summer conditions if need be.

For planting and care quick tips, click here.

Reference material taken in part from the following sources: Wikipedia and amaryllis.com

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