Being the flower enthusiast that I am, I dream long and hard about the day I get my Christmas flowers delivered.
So let’s think for a moment. Red is the colour of Christmas, guaranteed. How do I fill a vase full of the epitome of Christmas? With a floral arrangement bigger than Father Christmas’ belly, brighter than Rudolph’s nose and easier on the eye than mulled wine is on the lips.
Step down poinsettia, step aside Christmas cactus and make way for our flower of the week and, quite frankly, the flower of the season; amaryllis!
What’s the point in having the centre piece of dreams if you can’t gobble gobble on the subject over Christmas lunch? Let me give you a couple pointers on our festive amoré, amaryllis.
I reckon this little factoid will fill your heart with glad tidings: ‘amaryllis’ means ‘to sparkle’ in Greek. How fitting! How glorious! How festive! It’s almost too good to be true.
With their star shaped flower heads and vibrant yellow stamens, amaryllis have the capability to distract the eye from even the perfectly decked Christmas tree. I’d go as far as to call amaryllis the sparkling spectacle of the season. Sorry handmade wreath, maybe next year.
Ama-really-is a legacy of love
Greek mythology is laden with beautiful, poignant and often rather bloody tales. With such vibrant red petals, the Virgil’s poem of our flower of the week’s namesake, Amaryllis is no exception.
The narrative adheres to the classic basis of unrequited love. This time between our gal Amaryllis and a beautiful gardener, Alteo. The legacy goes that Alteo was an avid flower lover and a tough nut to crack on the love front.
Amaryllis was quite the perseverer though, refusing to let Alteo overlook her. To win Alteo’s heart, Amaryllis had to find a flower that Alteo had never seen before. Amaryllis was desperately unsuccessful on this floral quest. According to the Oracle at Delphi, her best hope was to shed her own blood to win Alteo over.
Dedicated and determined, Amaryllis walked to Alteo’s doorstep every day and stabbed her own heart with a golden arrow. A month passed until one fine day flowers grew out of the blood droplets; flowers Alteo had never seen before. You guessed it, this flower was that gloriously beautiful blood red beauty that we now call amaryllis.
You’ll be pleased to know that Alteo and Amaryllis then lived happily ever after.
Top snip tip
Secateurs just won’t cut the stems (or the mustard) when it comes to amaryllis. The gigantic tubular stems need a sharply angled knife taking to them to cleanly slice the ends off.
These festive flowers take up a lot of water so be sure to top up the water and keep them looking as fresh as un trodden snow.
Amaryllis look lovely in a glass vase so cut the ends regularly as they split and curl quite quickly otherwise.
Christmas flowers delivered for a-mary Christmas
Deck your halls with our Red Lion amaryllis and eucalyptus cinerea to really make the relatives rant and rave about their sparkling stay.
So there you have it! A bowlful of talking points for you to dip your Christmas mitts into as often as you do the chocolate box.