NCGW Things to do
How to ‘force’ bulbs for indoor blooms in winter
Trick your flowers into thinking winter has already arrived.
Here’s what you’ll need!
Shopping list for your local garden centre:
Small plant pots
Spring flowering bulbs (crocus, dwarf dafffodils and miniature iris all work well)
Autumn is the perfect time to plant spring flowering bulbs. Here’s a fun way to do it from the new book A Year of Nature Craft and Play by Catherine Hughes & Becky Goddard-Hill. Designed to inspire kids to get creative with nature, it’s filled with 52 gardening projects, crafts, games, art activities and science experiments to keep them busy all year!
You can ‘force’ spring bulbs to flower sooner than they normally would, by tricking them into thinking winter has already arrived. Doing this means you can enjoy their flowers indoors during winter – they make lovely homemade gifts for relatives and teachers too.
Forcing bulbs for indoor blooms in winter instructions:
- Use a trowel to put a layer of compost in the bottom of your pot.
- Plant your bulbs in the compost with their pointy ends facing upwards. You can pack them in, but try to avoid the bulbs touching each other.
- Cover your bulbs with more compost, filling to just below the top of the pot.
- Water your pot thoroughly.
- Place your pot in a cool, dark place – a shed, garage or unheated cellar is perfect. Make sure the top of the pot is not exposed to light, you can cover it with a paper bag or a plant saucer if you need to.
- Check your pot every now and then. Keep the soil damp, but not really wet.
- When you can see green tips poking through the soil, it’s time to move your pot to a warm place indoors. Once you’ve done this your bulbs will flower in around three weeks’ time.