Have you ever forced spring bulbs indoors? It’s a wonderful way to scratch your gardening itch and enjoy spring flowers in your house before they appear outside in your garden. See how easy it is to force fragrant hyacinth bulbs indoors. (This post contains affiliate links.)
Hyacinth bulbs – and any spring bulb for that matter – need to go through a period of cold and dark before they’ll grow and bloom. If you’re purchasing bulbs online or from a garden center, you’ll need to keep them dark and cold for at least 14 weeks. But, if you’re like me and didn’t buy your bulbs early enough, you can purchase pre-chilled bulbs that are ready to pot.
Be sure to pot your pre-chilled bulbs as soon as you receive them. Use garden pots with drainage holes. Bulbs that sit in soggy soil have a tendency to rot. Just like tulips you plant in the garden, make sure the bulb tips are facing upwards.
Plant them about one inch apart (don’t allow their sides to touch) and make sure the top part of the bulb is exposed. You don’t want to completely bury them. My favorite are purple hyacinths. I think they’re the most fragrant.
Water the soil and put the potted bulbs in a cool dark basement (about 40 to 60 degrees) for about four weeks or until the roots have developed. You won’t need to water the bulbs during this time, but you don’t want the soil to dry out. Use a plant mister to moisten the top of the soil if it dries out. You can move the hyacinth bulbs to a warm location in your home with indirect sunlight once one to two inches of green growth appears.
Get creative when potting your hyacinth bulbs. Re-use soup and vegetable cans to hold your spring flowers. Just make sure they’re clean with no sharp edges. Wrap with twine or ribbon and you’ve got a great gift for friends and family.
Yellow hyacinths are pretty for an Easter table setting. If you purchase your pre-chilled bulbs now, you’ll have enough time to get them blooming for the holiday.
Once you’ve moved your beautiful hyacinths to a warmer spot in the house, you can expect to see flowers appear in about two to four weeks. Keep the soil slightly moist but not over-watered.
You can follow these same instructions for forcing pre-chilled daffodils, tulips, and crocuses too. Happy Indoor Gardening!
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