Hello candy canes!

I’m officially in the Christmas spirit now.

For one, it’s December, and December has a way of forcing the cheer.

But more importantly, it’s because of the Hippeastrum action happening in the living room:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Flowers and Flowering plants

I’M SMITTEN!

Seriously, I’d choose an Amaryllis over a Poinsettia for Christmas decorating any day of the week. They’re easier, they’re prettier, they’re cheaper, they’re not so dang sensitive.

This year, though, I didn’t have to choose.

That’s because just before Halloween, I got a package from MY AWESOME COUSIN BILL FOX:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Flowers and Flowering plants

When I got it, I started jumping around and yelling, “Ohmigosh” and “Is this a thing now?”

I was pretty sure I knew what was in the package, because he sent me one last year, too. You can read about it here.

An Amaryllis bulb, or anything that flowers indoors, is a great gift for me, and I’m so stoked that Bill’s sent me one twice now.

THANK YOU, BILL!

They’re good gifts for anyone.

If you’ve never grown a Hippeastrum, I’ll show you how easy it is in a minute.

But for now, I want to mention again my cousin Bill’s awesomeness.

Bill’s been creating these fabulous miniature fairy gardens – talk about great gifts!

Please click on his company’s website Fox Specialty Services.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Flowers and Flowering plants

I love his urban gardens!

And I think his fairy garden kits make great gifts for families.

Most of you know that I’m a big, big fan of anything that helps kids grow a love of Nature, and these kits accomplish that in such a charming way. Nice family project.

Because Bill’s awesome.

Oh, and he’s having a sale, too. Click here for details.

Thank you again, Bill!

Ok, back to the bulb.

Hippeastrums are easy, easy, easy to grow. If you should find yourself lucky enough to be on the receiving end of one, here’s what you do.

Step one: Gush about the awesomeness that is about to unfold.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Flowers and Flowering plants

Step two: Soak the bulb for a few hours. I left mine in water overnight.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Flowers and Flowering plants

Step three: Plant the bulb in soil, leaving the top of the bulb exposed.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Flowers and Flowering plants

Step four: Water a little, and place on a sunny windowsill.

Step five: Watch the awesomeness unfold.

The tag that came with my bulb, an ‘Exotic Star,’ says that blooms will appear in 6 to 10 weeks.

Mine took a little over four weeks (planted on October 29th, the photo below is November 23rd) to get from no green to this:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Flowers and Flowering plants

After the initial watering, I watered sparingly until I saw the green stalk emerging. After that, I kept the soil moist.

Once the buds start to form, the plant moves quickly.

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Flowers and Flowering plants

The above photo was taken on November 29th.

The photo below was taken the next morning:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Flowers and Flowering plants

And the morning after that:

Good To Grow, Liza's photos, Flowers and Flowering plants

Did I mention my cousin’s awesomeness? Haha. I love him so!

I’ll be back manana, hope to see you here!

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