Seed Swaps

Butterfly Amaryllis

I was given this amaryllis about a year ago. It has flowered twice and the second time the blooms lasted for about four days. I now have transplanted it and have two big plants and many little ones. I think it is a beautiful one.

Posted 12 months ago


Folia Helper

United Kingdom10a

Hi Kevalsha,

It’s Hippestrum Papilio, one of the most popular species known as the ‘butterfly amaryllis’ and is usually very vigorous and productive.

I grew four from seed in about 2011 and it only took a couple of years growth before I had to split/pot on all four and some of them were almost bursting out of their pots in another couple of years!

If you transfer the pollen from the anthers of one plant to the style of another (long white protuberance with a three pronged sticky end) where it should stick and pollinate the flower, you might be able to encourage it to set seed. The seed pods form at the base of the flower and can be quite long and thick.

Let the pod grow and develop on the plant until it starts to become dry and look like it’s going to crack. Cut the seed pod off and pop it into a bowl where it will continue to dry, split open and reveal the usually black seeds. Some may have dark embryonic seeds in the black husks and others will be sterile. Save the fertile ones and sow them … be warned, they may come up like cress and you will have many MANY baby butterfly hippestrums!

Otherwise keep splitting and potting on the offsets and you’ll never be short of a gift from friends ;)

Posted 12 months ago


Folia Helper

United Kingdom8a

Glad to see you here, Kevalsha! :-)) Your Butterfly Amaryllis (Hippeastrum Papilio) looks really lovely! I’ve never grown these Amaryllis only the Dutch hybrids – all from my own seeds.

A word of warning – be careful of Armorel’s advice as if you do what she says you could end up with 100s of plants like me! :-D)

I’ve grown them from seed twice – the first time was way back in 2008 when I fertilized my own plants &, like Armorel says, they germinated like Mustard & Cress!

The 2nd time was 5 or 6 years ago when a lady from the USA sent me some pollen from her Amaryllis. I used some of it to fertilize some of my plants that were in flower at that time. Only a few plants produced seedpods & then some of them dried up. Eventually I ended up with 3 or 4 seedpods with lots of black, paper-like seeds. Knowing what might happen I only sowed a relatively low number of them. I also sent some of them to the lady who’d send me the pollen but I don’t think she ever sowed them :-(( I also sent some to a Folian who I knew from another gardening forum. Again I don’t know if they were ever sown.

As the pollen came from America & was used to pollinate my plants in the UK I called the resulting seeds ‘Anglo-American hybrids’ . I kept 20 seedlings which flowered last year for the first time 4 years after sowing. You will find journals I’ve written on them as well as threads in this group I’ve written.

The photo will give you an idea of what you can expect if you go ahead & sow lots of seeds or propagate the bublets that form after flowering on the majority of the bulbs every year!

Posted 12 months ago

Hi there! You're reading a conversation in the Hippeastrum group on Folia.