We received one of those wax-wrapped amaryllis bulbs as a Christmas gift.

It sent up two stalks with four deep red flowers each. After the flowers were spent we removed the wax and put it in water to see if it would start rooting. When we did this previously with another wax-wrapped bulb, that one immediately shot out roots, so it's in the greenhouse now. This second one did not send out roots.

A couple of weeks ago it started sending up a second stalk, and this one has white flowers.

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It was my understanding that amaryllis bulbs offspring can change color if they're hybrids, but not an individual bulb.

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My guess is that what we see as a single bulb is really a combination of at least two genetically distinct bulblets that somehow ended up together. Is there another explanation?

1 Answer 1


The explanation is probably just a genetic blip, that is, a spontaneous mutation in a section of DNA within the bulb. The part that has flowered now has instructions to be white, whereas the earlier, red flowers which arose before had instructions to be red. It would be interesting to see what flowers would arise next year if you were able to get roots from the bulb and pot it up; it is more likely to produce roots once this flower has died back or been removed (the second flowering will have deterred root production), but the bulb does not look to be in tip top condition and root production may not be viable before the bulb rots away. Still worth trying though...

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