With its sparkling flowers, the amaryllis brings warmth into the cold season and is the star of the holidays. But even at the beginning of the year it is a special appearance, which with its lush beauty gives every home a sheen.
Colours and shapes
Amaryllis is a large flower that comes in white, red, yellow, pink, salmon, purple, orange and bicoloured variations. Its petals are very unusual: they appear to be made of fabulous velvet. Each stem usually offers four to six impressive blooms. The amaryllis has no leaves, which is why, in the United States they sometimes call her the ‘Naked Lady’.
Amaryllis symbolises pride and enchanting beauty, and the giving of this flower marks friendship and affection. It’s definitely a flower for winning hearts, either with a bouquet on the kitchen table or gifted as a big bunch.
What we call amaryllis originates from South and Central America and the Caribbean, and is not actually an amaryllis in its proper, botanical sense. The true name of our beautiful amayrillis flower is Hippeastrum. It is part of the narcissi family and grows from a bulb. The word Hippeastrum comes from Greek and literally means ‘knight star’, referring to the star-shaped petals: hippeus means knight, and astron, star.