Here's the back story: After 12 weeks of chilling in my refrigerator crisper drawer, the amaryllis bulbs were potted up late last year. There's always a little bit of anxiety about removing from the refrigerator the brown paper bags in which the bulbs have been stored and, after the long wait, looking inside. The surprises are generally not good. This year, some of the paper bags had rotted through (maybe too much soil left on the amaryllis roots?), one bulb had turned soft (maybe too long in the cold?), and a "Royal Velvet" bulb was covered with soft reddish areas (maybe both too much soil and too much cold?).
And there was greenish mold growing on its roots.
And the trimmed-down stalk was mushy.
And there was a thoroughly distasteful rotten area on the side that required surgery. No photographs, please.
Diseased? Delicate? I was ready to pitch the poor thing. But my husband, enthusiast of scientific experiments (and thrifty Yankee), argued to keep it, separate from the other bulbs, but save it anyways. Nothing to lose.
Update: So here is a small sign that faith is rewarded. Slowly, slowly, new growth is poking up from the trimmed top of the bulb. It may not look very tall to most people, but to me it's towering.
Happy inauguration day!