Amaryllis is a showy flower, and you can plant its bulbs both indoors and out. Indoors, it blooms in the fall or winter, making it a great choice to add some color to your home. To grow Amaryllis outdoors, you need a warm location so don't attempt to plant them except in zones 9 and 10. Indoor gardeners prize amaryllis for their exotic and dramatic blooms.
Plant the Bulbs
You can buy amaryllis in pots or as bulbs from nurseries and online. If the bulb is already planted, just add warm water. If you have bulbs, soak the base and roots in lukewarm water for a few hours. Put well-drained potting mix in a tub and add warm water until the soil is moist, but not wet. Fill 6 or 7-inch pots halfway with potting mix for single bulbs. Use a 12-inch pot if you want to group up to three bulbs together. Set the bulbs on top of the potting soil and fill in with more soil until only the top third of the bulb is above the soil line. Water well and press the soil gently to set the bulbs.
After planting, set the pots where temperatures remain above 60 degrees Fahrenheit and the plant receives direct light. A temperature range of 70 to 80 degrees, day and night, is ideal and will force the fastest blooms. Water only when the top inch of soil is dry. Overwatering may cause the bulb to rot. You should start to notice growth within 2 to 8 weeks depending on variety. As long as the bulb is firm and you aren't overwatering, just leave it alone. You may be able to hasten growth by providing bottom heat in the form of a propagation mat or by placing the pots on top of a refrigerator.
Once the bulbs start to grow, place them in a sunny window or sun room, and turn frequently so the stalks remain straight. If the plant becomes top heavy, use stakes to support it.
Amaryllis will also grow happily in just water and stones. Place stones in a glass bowl to a depth of 4 inches. Cut off any dry or brown roots, but leave roots that are white or fleshy. Set the bulb in the bowl, roots down, and fill in around the bulb with more stones. Leave the top third of the bulb exposed above the rocks. Fill the bowl with water to within 1 inch of the bulb. Do not let the bulb sit in water or it will rot. Check the water level daily and refill as needed. Again, set the bowl in a sunny location with warm temperatures. The bulb will sprout in 2 to 8 weeks. Turn the pot regularly to keep the plant from growing to the light.
Bulbs grown in soil can be rehabilitated for use the following year. Discard bulbs grown in water as they seldom perform well again.