Generally bulbs are forced in October, so you can have flowers in December. I was very busy in October, and I was not going to be around in December so I decided to wait to force my bulbs until now. If my calculations are correct I should have bulbs in time for Easter. I'm hoping to give flowering tulips as Easter gifts.
Here is what I did:
Step 1: Gather supplies.
Potting soil (the websites I consulted recomended using a mix of potting soil, sand and garden loam. I didn't have anything but potting soil, and one site said I could use just that, so I am trying pure potting soil this year)
Pots- I used cheap plastic ones, but in a nice white color. I plan to tie a ribbon around them in the end.
Step 2: Fill pots 3/4 full of soil.
Step 3: Place bulbs in pots.
Step 4: Partially cover bulbs with soil.
|Some of my bulbs already started to sprout, so I think the time in the refrigerator will be shorter.|
Step 4: Water the bulbs.
Step 5: Put bulbs in a cold place.
|I used the little flower labels to keep track of which bulbs were in which pot.|
Step 6: Wait.
The bulbs are to be kept in the dark for 13 weeks. Because my bulbs were kept in the basement for the past couple of month I'm not sure if this rule still applies. I have thirteen weeks until Easter, so I'm alright. From my research I just have to keep them chilled until I see the shoots are about 2-3 inches high and the roots are sticking out the bottom. I will let you know if this happens faster than the 13 weeks allotted.
My tulips are in the works, and in 13 weeks or less I should have orange, pink and white tulips in my house. The only problem? By the time I have my flowers it will be practically spring. Oh well, maybe winter will run a little longer this year (I can't believe I just suggested that!). Anyway who would complain about fresh flowers, no matter the season?
I still have some daffodils and paper-white bulbs to be planted, and they don't need any chill time. As soon as I have some more soil and pebbles they will be in my windowsills. Spring may still come to the Designed by Chance home early.