These paper white bulbs are one of the best romantic valentines ideas. They are easy to put together and make a gorgeous gift.
Hi, I am Karen Creel and I am the Gardenchick. I love all things gardening, and enjoy sharing my ideas on both my blog and on my Facebook page. I will be guest posting with the It’s a Keeper contributors, and hope you enjoy what I bring to the group.
As I look out of my window this winter morning, I can’t wait until the dogwoods start to show their white blooms, and the pink azaleas decorate the front yard. The ground hog in North Georgia didn’t see his shadow, so we are expecting an early spring. But, you wouldn’t know it this morning. There are a few snowflakes falling, and I long to go “play in the dirt”. Not even the daffodils have broken ground so until then, I will have to settle for bringing a little spring indoors by forcing bulbs.
Since I started so late, I chose paperwhites as the bulb I wanted to force because, unlike many other bulbs, they do not require pre chilling. Amaryllis are another great choice since they too do not need to be pre chilled. Bulbs such as daffodils, hyacinths, dwarf iris, and tulips, which are popular for forcing, have to be pre-chilled for 10-15 weeks, so those can be purchased in October or November for spring bulbs.
Bulbs can be forced in either water or soil. The paperwhites will grow up to 12 inches tall, so I thought a tall container of water would be the best choice to prevent them from falling over. I like to repurpose items I find from my flea market adventures, so I chose this old mason jar with the rusty wire, and decorated it up a bit with some keys I have had put back for a jewelry project.
The rocks came from an area around some plants, so I washed them off to prevent clouding the water with dirt. Place the rocks in the container and place your bulbs on the rock flat side down. Fill with water to just below the rocks, so that the bulb is not sitting in water, causing it to rot.
Add additional water as it evaporates, but do not allow to touch bulbs. The roots will reach down into the water to grow. Next, place the container in a cool dark place around 60-65 degrees for a few weeks until the bulb starts to sprout. My basement office is cool, and I have a closet which is the perfect place. After you see the sprouts, bring out and place in front of a sunny window. It won’t be long until you have flowers for an early spring.
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