Amaryllis is a prominent flowering plant that is grown for its exquisite blossoms. Experts recommend adding phosphorus-rich fertilizers to this ornamental plant to increase flowering.
To enrich the growing soil of amaryllis and promote flowering, you can use bone meal powder, one of the best organic fertilizers that encourage root development and flowering in amaryllis.
NPK ratio of bone meal fertilizer is 3-15-0. Bone meal is good for amaryllis with nitrogen, phosphorus, and other nutrients. Later in this article, you’ll know how to use this organic fertilizer to enrich flowering plants.
What is Bone Meal Fertilizer?
Animal bones, usually beef, are pulverized into fine powder to obtain bone meal fertilizer.
Adding this organic fertilizer to amaryllis encourages root development, promotes green leaves, increases beautiful blossoms, and helps the plant develop disease resistance.
Unlike synthetic fertilizers, bone meal powder gradually releases nutrients into the soil as it decomposes; this makes it a popular choice for gardeners looking for a long-lasting and sustainable way to improve soil fertility.
What kind of nutrients does amaryllis need?
To grow amaryllis year-round, you should feed them with essential nutrients.
It would be best to fertilize amaryllis with a well-balanced liquid fertilizer or granular fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 10-10-10.
However, the University of Minnesota states to use phosphorus-rich fertilizer with NPK of 10-20-15.
While nitrogen encourages foliage formation, phosphorus, and potassium enrich the plant soil to produce blossoms and develop a more robust root system.
You can use slow-releasing fertilizers like bone meal once every 3 months.
However, applying a well-balanced liquid fertilizer is recommended for an initial nutritional boost.
Is Bone Meal Good for Amaryllis?
Bone meal fertilizer can enrich amaryllis with phosphorus and other nutrients that promote flowering, healthy plant growth, and root development.
Amaryllis can be grown indoors and outdoors if you’re living in sub-tropical and tropical climates.
Usually, these flowering plants are grown in pots, so regular watering depletes nutrients in the soil. This is why you must enrich the potting soil with essential nutrients regularly.
Bone meal is a natural and slow-releasing fertilizer. Adding some of this powder into the potting soil will ensure the plant gets a continuous supply of nutrients.
Failing to fertilize amaryllis can result in reduced blooming and stunted plant growth.
With regular application of fertilizer, you can force amaryllis to re-bloom. This way, you will have flowering plants year-round.
How to Use Bone Meal for Amaryllis?
It is recommended to conduct a soil test before fertilizing the plant. To work this organic fertilizer properly, the pH of growing soil should be seven or below 7.
As it is rich in phosphorus, the growing medium should have phosphorus deficiency, or you may over-fertilize the plant.
In the case of alkaline soil, doctor soil pH by adding ammonia sulfate or elemental sulfur.
- You can add bone meal powder to the potting soil. This will give an initial boost to the plant. This slow-releasing fertilizer supplies phosphorus to the amaryllis when it rightly needs it.
- The second way is to sprinkle bone meal powder around the amaryllis plant. After the decomposition process, essential nutrients promote blooming and root development.
- Instead of adding bone meal to the plant, add this organic fertilizer to the compost bin. Though this is not recommended, enriching the compost with phosphorus-rich material will boost blooming if your garden is filled with flowering plants.
You can make bone meal powder at home.
- Get animal bones from the slaughterhouse.
- Wash them and dry them to remove leftover moisture.
- Now, boil bones till they are softened.
- Pulverize bones to obtain bone meal powder.
- Use it to boost flowering, fruits and vegetables.
How Often Should I Fertilize My Amaryllis?
Conduct a soil test; this will allow you to know the nutritional needs of your garden soil.
Initially, amaryllis needs a well-balanced fertilizer. When the plant gets green foliage and is about to bloom, adding phosphorus-rich fertilizer will benefit the plant.
Depending on climatic conditions in your region and where you’re growing your amaryllis (outdoor or indoor), you should fertilize this flowering plant once or twice a month.
- If you’re using slow-releasing fertilizers like bone meal, apply it once every two months. (for indoor amaryllis)
- You can also use liquid fertilizer once every two weeks.
You should ensure the plant gets enough sunlight and regular watering along with fertilizing.
Without adequate sun exposure, amaryllis won’t be able to utilize nutrients from the soil.
Water, along with contributing to the photosynthesis process, is responsible for the uptake of nutrients from the soil.
Below mentioned are some essential tips that must be followed for healthy amaryllis.
How to care for an amaryllis plant?
Proper care must be taken while fertilizing amaryllis, as over-fertilization or under-fertilization can result in stunted plant growth.
Besides nutrients, water and sunlight are among the essential needs of the plants.
Only with adequate watering and sufficient sunlight will amaryllis utilize the nutrients in the soil.
- Plant amaryllis bulbs in well-draining potting soil with the top one-third of the bulb exposed above the soil.
- Amaryllis needs bright indirect sunlight, so choose a location in your room with ample sunlight. Placing the amaryllis pot beside the windowsill can be the best option.
- Water amaryllis when the top 2 inches of the soil is dry. Between watering, allow the plant soil to dry.
- You should avoid overwatering, as it results in root rot, yellowing of leaves, and stunted growth. Similarly, don’t underwater your amaryllis.
- Amaryllis prefers a temperature between 70-75F. If the temperature outside isn’t favorable, then relocate the pot indoors.
- Use balanced fertilizer to enrich the amaryllis. While potting, add compost and some bone meal to the soil. But, ensure the potting soil is low in phosphorus. Else, it may lead to over-fertilization.
- To encourage blooming, you can use phosphorus-rich natural fertilizers like bone meal.
- After blooming, remove spent flowers. So that plant energy can be preserved for the next blooming.
- During the dormant period, reduce watering and sunlight exposure.
- Cut yellow leaves and spent flowers; this will allow the plant to save energy to bloom next time after dormancy.
Bone meal has been used to fertilize gardening plants. This natural fertilizer is known to enrich flowering and edible plants.
Nutrients housed in bone meal are good for amaryllis; they promote blooming and root development.
But, you should conduct a soil test to confirm the nutritional value of the soil. Applying bone meal may result in over-fertilization if your growing medium is rich in phosphorus.
The key to growing healthy amaryllis is to supply the required nutrients, not less or more.
Along with fertilizing, regular watering, and indirect sunlight is necessary.