Forcing Amaryllis and Paperwhites for Winter | Days of Chalk and Chocolate

Forcing Amaryllis and Paperwhites for Winter

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One of my favorite things to do this time of year is to force Amaryllis and Paperwhite bulbs. If I plant them by Thanksgiving I usually have blooms by Christmas which is wonderful. But it doesn't bother me if  I get them planted late because they are a welcome bit of color and life in an otherwise dreary time of year. You can also buy the bulbs pretty inexpensively at stores like Walmart or Home Depot.  And they are almost don't need a green thumb to be successful!

I always plant mine in this old silver trophy bowl but really any pretty container works. If it doesn't have drainage holes you can either poke some or put some rocks in the bottom of the container.

Then I fill the container about 2/3 full of potting soil. This year I used the soil that came with my bulbs.

I like to plant the large Amaryllis bulb in the middle. You have to be careful not to bury the entire bulb as you would daffodils or tulips. Amaryllis like to have their shoulders above the soil.  If you want them all bloom at the same time, wait a few weeks before adding the Paperwhites because they grow faster and Amaryllis are huge and take a while.

 I surround the Amaryllis with the Paperwhites. They can be buried a little deeper but I don't cover the little sprout on top. Give the bulbs a little drink but don't water log them. They really don't need much to grow. Set them in a sunny spot and let nature take its course.

Kind of creepy looking.  Last year I used some dollar store moss to cover the dirt. My brother-in-law sometimes uses little white gardening stones. This year I didn't do anything but I think I should eventually.

The Paperwhites begin growing immediately. It is so fun to watch them grow a bit more every day!

In about a week and a half mine look like this now. I keep the soil a little damp but not wet while they are growing.

When your flowers sprout you can water them a bit more to keep them happy. 

Once your blooms are finished, some say that you can dry and reuse your bulbs the next year. I have never been able to get my plants to re-bloom the second time around so I just chuck them.

This is one of those small little traditions that makes me stupid happy. There is something special about seeing flowers grow during the empty wintertime. They are almost magical!


1 comment:

  1. Mine rebloom, but not great. Weak blossoms. I don't have enough sunlight in my house to get strong plants. But you think they are dead, then miraculously they come back. They are so gorgeous!!


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