Forcing bulbs inside is an effortless way to enjoy spring blossoms in winter. Almost any spring bulb can be forced indoors. Forcing is a broadly used term which means you are fast forwarding their growing cycle to bloom in winter. Paperwhites, also called Narcissus papyraceus, are among the easiest bulbs to force since they don’t require a chilling period. The fragrant flowers bloom within approximately four weeks of planting.
You will need:
A container, 3 to 4 inches deep. If you are pushing the bulbs in water you can use a little bowl, vintage trophy, or another fairly dish would work superbly. If you are planting in dirt, choose a pot with a drainage hole in the bottom. Pebbles or potting soil to fill the bottom few inches of your own container. Bulbs of your selection. I utilized paperwhites, such as these grown by Jennifer of Dear Lillie, and tulips. Mine were purchased from Home Depot but they may be easily found online and at the neighborhood nursery.
1. Fill in your container with a couple inches of dirt or soil. Use bagged potting soil, or simply go outside and scoop a few pebbles and dirt from the backyard.
2. Nestle the bulbs into the pebbles/dirt with the tips facing upward.
3. Place a few pebbles/some dirt around to keep the bulbs in place. It’s okay to put them closely together. It is going to help hold them up right, and they look amazing in bunches.
4. Add water, stopping just short of the bottom of the bulb. If the bulbs sit in water, then the bulbs can rot. If utilizing dirt, water enough to dampen the soil.
5. Place container in a cool (50 degrees or so) dark spot until roots begin to form. My paperwhites took 10-14 days. Tulips may take up to ten weeks. Keep adding water as needed, filling to just below the bulb, or before the dirt is totally damp.
Last year I used dirt in terracotta pots for my paperwhites. I spray painted the pots black and composed messages on them . It made for an enjoyable screen!
Once the roots take hold, put the container into a warmer room and set in the sunlight. When the paperwhites begin to bloom, move them to indirect sun. This will help the flowers last longer. The tulips will bloom beautifully with direct sunlight.
Vintage milk glass vases were my pick this year. Here they are just beginning to peek out. I adore the white milk glass with the white blossoms.
I used two of the containers on the buffet in my dining room. They should look like this after spending a week or two in the house. It’s wonderful how fast they grow!
Maria of Dreamy Whites planted hers in shallow bowls. As soon as they grow taller, then you might need to tie them together. I enjoyed that she packed the bowl with lots of bulbs giving them a true existence.
Jennifer of Dear Lillie utilized paperwhites in a vintage trophy for a simple, elegant holiday mantle.
Paperwhites are a part of the centerpiece with this table. Because this is so simple to accomplish, you can plan to do this anytime during summer time bringing in a gorgeous, organic element to your desk.
These potted bulbs also make for a wonderful present, or even a fun activity for the children. I hope you’ll give this simple, budget friendly project a try on your own home.
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