Plant amaryllis and paperwhite bulbs for indoor display. If you've never done that let me say, it's simple! Typically I buy these at the supermarket. They come complete with a pot, soil or planting medium, the bulb and instructions. With an amaryllis bulb, you should leave about 1/3 of the bulb above the soil line. Usually it takes 8-10 weeks for it to flower, but it's worth the wait. A splash of color from a live plant in the middle of winter is so welcomed!
Paperwhite bulbs are smaller, bloom sooner, and usually come 3-5 in a package. They can be set in a bed of river rocks if you wish, since they don't really need soil to grow. The flowers are really fragrant. Some people love that aroma while others find it off-putting, so perhaps it's not ideal for a dining room centerpiece, but great in the living room. When they finish blooming, just toss them out as they will not rebloom next year.
Amaryllis bulbs can be kept and grown for another season, but I haven't had much luck with that. I've gotten new leaves, but no flower stalk. Perhaps those of you with a greener thumb than mine will have success. To me, it's just easier to buy a new bulb next fall.
If you have non-gardening friends, you could start a bulb now and give it as a holiday gift. I'm sure they will enjoy it.
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