Learning to force flower bulbs not only allows you to have a flowers all year long, if you time it right you can give some fabulous Christmas gifts without spending a lot of money.
It is pretty simple to do.Â About six weeks before you want the flowers to bloom gather all of your supplies.
- River rocks
- Paperwhite Narcissus bulbs
- Put a layer of the stones one inch deep in the bottom of the container.
- Place the bulbs root side down on the rocks.
- Pour water just to the top of the rocks but donâ€™t submerge them in it. The bulb should not touch the water. The roots will grow down to the water but if the bulb is sitting in water it will rot.
- Keep an eye on the water and refill it when you see the water is below the rocks.
- Soon the roots will grow and shoots will sprout out the top.
- Once the plants begin to bloom, keep them out of the sun. They will last much longer and since they wonâ€™t bloom again anyway it serves no purpose.
- Water the blooming plants sparingly for best results.
- Start a few bulbs every week so that you have some plants that are ready at Christmas, as well as having blooms all winter long.
- You can find some cool looking vases and dishes made especially for forcing paperwhite bulbs at your local garden center.
- There are many other bulbs that can be used for forcing. Crocus, amaryllis, and daffodil are a few of the most popular.
Be imaginative â€“ you can grow crocus in a vintage tea cup, or amaryllis in an old crock. Keep it fun.
photo credit: Brianna Privet