Are you sick of winter?
Are you dreaming of spring?
Drat...not for awhile!
As Blogville's "Director of Agriculture", I'm here to help you out of your winter doldrums!
Let's start some Spring Indoors!
Daffodils, amaryllis, paperwhites and hyacinths (especially grape hyacinths) make excellent candidates for growing indoors. Keep in mind that many hyacinth varieties will need to be pre-chilled
for six weeks or longer before planting. Reject any moldy, bruised or shriveled bulbs.
You can plant your bulbs in pots or containers filled with potting soil or gravel, or try using eggshells, which can be planted directly into the garden after flowering. Remove the top quarter of the eggshell, set the egg aside and rinse the shell with warm water.
Add a small amount of gravel to the bottom of each eggshell.
Sit the bulb on top of the gravel. Add a bit of soil to help anchor the bulb and dress the eggshell with moss to help maintain moisture. Gently water your eggshell garden and place it in a sunny spot.
Allow the soil to dry in-between waterings, usually once a week. Within six weeks, you should see flower buds form and blossom.
Try swapping out gravel for Mardi Gras beads for a festive arrangement that will bloom just in time for Fat Tuesday.
If you've forced bulbs before and experienced flowers that topple over, try this trick: mixing a little bit of alcohol in with the water will cause the flower stems to grow shorter.
To make a five percent solution, mix one part isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol) with ten parts water. If you want to waste perfectly good “hard liquor” (typically 40% distilled spirit) such as gin, whiskey, or vodka, mix together one part liquor and seven parts water.
Note that the sugars in beer and wine don’t do the trick for the bulbs.
We have started some Voodoo Lilies...Oooo Spooky!