Christmas is only a few weeks away and both florists and growers are working hard on their Christmas preparations. Because florists are not usually aware of the process that their Christmas flowers and foliages go through, we thought it would be nice to do a behind the scenes Christmas special. We are kicking off with a German Amaryllis grower, because what can beat a beautiful and huge Amaryllis at this time of year?
Armin Pass has been running his Amaryllis nursery in Germany since 1974, where he’s specialized in mini Amaryllis. In his four greenhouses, he grows 14 different Amaryllis varieties. We met him in a sea of thousands of Amaryllis stems and got to know his farm a bit better.
His parents started cultivating Amaryllis in this same nursery: “This is what we know, this is what we have done for over 40 years;” That is Armin Pass’ answer to the question of why he has chosen this career. And it shows. The well-organised company makes a great impression and his love for the Amaryllis can’t be hidden.
The Amaryllis is the best-selling cut flower at Christmas. So it is currently high season for grower Pass, who also grows a few hydrangeas in addition to the Amaryllis. “What do you do the rest of the year?” we asked him. “Vacation!” he answers with a big grin and wink. The Amaryllis is available in all colours, but the red variety is the most popular one for Christmas. The good durability and the multiple heads per stem are the benefits of this beauty. The decorative flower combines particularly well with Ilex and fir green.
The Amaryllis bulbs are cleaned regularly in a large water bath at 42.5 degrees Celcius. At this temperature, protein coagulates, so that any possible insects die, even if they are in the middle of the bulb. If the Amaryllis is well maintained then they can grow really old. Some bulbs have accompanied Armin Pass for over 40 years(!).
Armin also breeds his own variety: the Lilliput Amaryllis. The Lilliput has a great dark red, velvety blossom. The production took 8 long years, but the effort has paid off. Because of the unique, dark red colour, it is very popular, especially during Christmas.
We asked Armin: what advice can you give our florists in dealing with the Amaryllis?
‘If kept cool and dry, Amaryllis stay fresh for a long time. When you put them into a vase, only give it some water and cover the end with tape – so the stem do not curl up at the bottom. For varieties with large flowers, you can put a stick into the stem, so that the heavy head does not bend over.’
And finally, Armin gave us a box with several varieties for testing. Stay tuned for the test report of our in-house florist, about the durability and quality of the flowers.
Are you interested in Pass his products for your Christmas bouquets or arrangements? Go to our Live Shop and search for Armin Pass in the grower filter. Looking for other Amaryllis varieties? Don’t worry! On our buying platform, you can find over 400 different Amaryllis.