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Sunday, 18 December 2011

Forcing the Bulbs


Forcing the bulbs is not a novelty. And also, it is not a hard thing to do. This Hyacinths and Cyclamen flowers of mine bring me joy and light these dark winter days. 
Usually, the forced bulbs are discarded after flowering but, if you take a good care of them they can survive several seasons. The thing is bulbs get pretty exhausted by forcing and need lots of nutrients to regain strength. 


If you like to have bulbs flowering in winter you have to start early in October. Use first class bulbs for forcing. Early cultivars are better choice. You can force almost everything - daffodils, hyacinths, scilla, muscari, tulips, crocuses...
There is a general rule for all of them - moist soil and good drainage. Use the mixture of potting soil, vermiculite and peat moss to plant them. Hyacinth may be grown only in water in the special forcing vases.
You can plant several bulbs into one pot without letting them touch. Fill in the potting mixture leaving the 'noses' exposed and water well.
Now we need to simulate normal growing conditions for bulb so, the pot should be placed in a dark, cold place. It may be placed into refrigerator too. 
Forcing usually takes twelve weeks by which the roots and shoots form. When you notice them, transfer the pot into bright, cold room. You can make paper cones to cover the shoots to elongate them. Feed the bulbs regularly until they form flower buds.

Cyclamen flower stems just started to form.

 Once they start to open place in the room or on the windowsill but not in direct sunlight. Small bulbs are too exhausted to keep them after flowering but you can keep the larger ones e.g. daffodils or hyacinths. Don't cut the  leaves and stems when they start yellowing. Let them die naturally. Keep the pots in a cold place until late summer or early autumn when you can plant them into garden. They will regain strength and flower again next year.

3 comments:

  1. I love the scent of Hyacinths. They remind me of my Grandma's house. She always used to grow some to be ready at Christmas time.

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  2. Prekrasni su,ovo mi je tako lijepo zumbuli u zimskom periodu,i sama sam se upustila u pospješivanje,i uz tvoje savjete nadam se da će i dalje biti uspješna cvatnja...veliki pozdrav!

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  3. I've usually popped forced bulbs into the garden - they eventually seem to build up enough strength to add a bit of colour!

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