In recent years, you might’ve seen amaryllis bulbs coated in colorful wax popping up around the holidays, alongside poinsettias and Christmas cacti. These trendy holiday decorations got their start in Europe, and now they’ve been steadily gaining popularity in the United States. Along with adding a little extra holiday cheer, the wax coating on the bulbs holds in all the moisture the plants need to bloom. This means you don't have to place them in a pot, and you don’t even have to remember to water them between baking Christmas cookies and trimming the tree. In fact, you can even grow them upside down for a truly unique and festive display.
Gardener’s Supply Company offers an upside-down waxed amaryllis kit, that has proven very popular. According to a recent Instagram post, this idea initially faced skepticism around the company's office, but their product development team tested the kits "over and over again until we were all convinced that they works." And apparently, the bulbs have stood up to the challenge of growing upside-down each time.
While you might see other waxed amaryllis bulbs around this holiday season, the upside-down kits are exclusive to Gardener’s Supply Company and make fun gifts. The kit includes one waxed bulb and a brass steel wire hanger. Each plant can grow 18-24 inches in height and produces 5 or 6 individual flowers. The bulbs will only bloom once, so once the flowers are past their prime, you can either toss them or you can try scraping off the wax and planting the bulb in a pot.
In addition to the kits, you can buy just the reuable upside down hanger ($9) from Gardener's Supply. Or you could try DIYing this look by attaching wire to the bottom of any waxed amaryllis bulb, but if you want to be sure it'll grow straight, the kits by Gardener's Supply Company have been tested for growing upside-down.
The care instructions couldn’t be easier; they're even more low-maintenance than air plants. Just keep your upside-down amaryllis in a well-lit room, and rotate it every couple of days to help it grow straighter. One bulb will produce a cluster of beautiful, deep red flowers in four to six weeks. You could try a few hung over the dining room table, or even over a doorway as a stunning upgrade from mistletoe.
Whether you choose to grow waxed amaryllis the traditional way or try them upside down, these bulbs are an effortless way to bring color to your holiday decorations with fresh flowers. As if by magic, they'll grow and bloom almost anywhere you put them without needing any watering.
Vote for the man who promises least; he'll be the least disappointing.