The Belladonna lily is the true ama-ryllis and the fine plants generally known as amaryllis are really hippe-astrums. Several other genera are closely allied and as their cultivation is the same the cultural directions here given will include hippeastrum, crinum and vallota. They are bulbous but not herbaceous, although resting partially during winter.
They seed freely and if sown at once and the young plants grown on in a warm house, and rested slightly during the winter, will flower the third year. They can also be increased by the offsets from the old bulbs.
If you obtain the dormant bulbs start them in a little bottom heat, keeping the bulb near the surface of the soil. They flower when making their first leaves but must not be put away and neglected or stood under the bench after the flower is faded, for it is then that the plant makes its principal growth and stores up strength for future flowering. Keep them watered and growing till the winter months, but as they are not deciduous, or only partially so, they are best in a light, cool house and with an occasional watering. After they require a 7-inch or 8-inch pot they need not be shifted, but can be resurfaced annually. They like a rich, rather heavy loam. Few, if any, of our greenhouse pests trouble them. Being all tropical, when growing they must have a light, warm house and plenty of moisture.
The offsets can be removed from the old bulbs just after the flowering or when you start the bulbs into active growth; the former is the better plan.
A Corner of the Amaryllis Show at Lincoln Park, Chicago.
The amaryllis flowers in July and August, the hippeastrum in April and May. Though hardly a florist's plant they are gorgeous flowers for the conservatory.