Fresh Cut Amaryllis Care and Handling

Fresh Cut Amaryllis Care and Handling

Amaryllis Care and Handling Guide

Amaryllis are one of the most popular flowers you’ll find around the holidays but most people think of them as a potted bulb plant and only available in white or red colors; Amaryllis are so much more than that! They are also beautiful as a cut flower and come in a wide range of colors and varieties (including unique cybister amaryllis and nymph (double bloom) amaryllis varieties).

Fresh cut amaryllis are not difficult to care for and a few stems simply arranged in a vase creates an easy and stunning decoration. We share our fresh cut amaryllis care and handling tips so you know how to maximize your enjoyment of these gorgeous blooms:

Amaryllis arrive in bud form

The beauty of fresh cut amaryllis is that you don’t have to wait for the plant to grow a bloom! Fresh cut amaryllis are shipped in bud form so you get to see the magic of the blooming process that typically takes only a few days.

Amaryllis Care and Handling - Arrive in bud stage

They’ll arrive carefully wrapped and don’t be alarmed if you see a little splitting of the stems. Amaryllis have hollow stems and so some splitting is normal.

Amaryllis Care and Handling - Split stems is normal

Quickly cut and place the amaryllis in water

Amaryllis stems can be quite large and difficult to trim with floral shears, so we recommend using a sharp knife to cut the stems at a diagonal. Avoid using a dull knife because it can end up crushing rather than cutting the stems!

Amaryllis Care and Handling - Cut stems with sharp knife

Amaryllis Care and Handling - Cut at a diagonal

You’ll want to cut enough of the stem off so that the amaryllis are supported in the vase you plan to use. A good rule of thumb is the vase should be at least two-thirds the height of your cut stem. Since amaryllis stems can be quite long, you may need to cut as much as 8” to 10” or more if you’re using a shorter vase.

Amaryllis Care and Handling - Cut enough of the stem off

As soon as you cut the amaryllis, immediately place the stem in at least 4” to 5” of clean water. A lukewarm temperature is great for the initial hydration, but room temperate would also be fine.

Allow amaryllis to bloom in the right spot

For the best vase life, you’ll want to put your vase of amaryllis in a cool spot that is away from direct sunlight and any heating vents or electrical appliances that get warm (e.g., not near the TV).

Amaryllis varieties can vary in bloom rate, so you may seem some blooms start to open within an hour, whereas others may take a couple days. Note that blooms on a single stems also typically open at different rates and that helps prolong your enjoyment of the flowers! Just trim off older blooms as they start to wither so that you make room for new blooms to shine!

Amaryllis Care and Handling - Blooms at different rate

It’s normal to see stems curl

As amaryllis hydrate and mature, the stems may start to split and curl up from the bottom. If you regularly cut and change the water every 2-3 days, this will help minimize the splitting and curling. In the picture below, we purposefully did not trim the stems to show how this looks. You can also see some pink areas at the base of the stem and that is bacteria collecting on the stem. This will affect the vase life of your amaryllis and that’s why we recommend a regular cut and change of water!

Amaryllis Care and Handling - Curling stems

If you need to keep your stems long or can’t regularly trim the stems for some reason, then you can prevent splitting by wrapping the side of the stems with tape (clear waterproof is best, but clear packing tape also works). Just don’t cover the bottom of the stems or else you’ll prevent the flower from getting water. This is a great step to follow to keep your stems looking neat when they are visible in a clear vase.

Amaryllis Care and Handling - Wrap stems with tape

Amaryllis Care and Handling - Wrapped stems to avoid curling

More Amaryllis Tips

When to get amaryllis delivered for a wedding or event

In our opinion, amaryllis are underused for weddings and events! They can really create a statement and they look gorgeous in bouquets and centerpieces. If you are planning to use amaryllis for a wedding or event, make sure to get it delivered 3-4 days before your event date. You’ll want a few days for the amaryllis to hydrate and open up.

Amaryllis for a wedding or event

Getting amaryllis to open faster

If you need your amaryllis blooms to open faster, cut the stems down as short as possible for your needs (shorter stem means less distance for water to travel up to the bloom). Place the flowers in lukewarm water in a bright spot (but not in direct sunlight).

Amaryllis Care and Handling - Getting it to bloom faster

Avoid a pollen mess

As an amaryllis bloom opens, you’ll see stamens that will have anthers covered in pollen, much like lilies. The pollen from amaryllis do not stain as badly as lilies, but to avoid a mess, just gently pluck off the yellow anthers and problem averted!

We hope you find these fresh cut amaryllis care and handling tips helpful and check out our amaryllis page to see all the varieties and colors that we offer. Red and white colors are available almost year round and the winter season offers the best selection of colors and varieties. If you have any questions, just drop us a line ( and we’ll be happy to help!


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