Trough of Tulips

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Tulip Trough

The other little project I did today is to plant 60 tulip bulbs in this old trough I found over at my Father-in-law’s house. I broke up the old soil in it and added a peaty soilless mix that contains time release fertilizer pellets. Then the bulbs were scattered and pressed in pointing up. (If you have never done this before, the tip goes up and the tiny flat root plate goes down. Sometimes it is a little hard to tell.) Then over the top went more soilless media. They will be protected from animals in this container. It should get chilled in the garage all winter but not frozen really hard.
I saw this done this past May when I went to Keukenhopf in the Netherlands. They used so many bulbs that it made a stunningly thick display. I purchased these bulbs at a home store for ten dollars per bag. I used two bags for this trough. The flowers are going to be a mixed pastel collection. One bag is mid season and one bag is late. I expect them to be quite tall too. We will see if I get a long season of bloom out of them. Now to water them and wait for SPRING!

Paperwhites

This post is about an easy project to do that you can do right now or next spring. What am I talking about? It is forcing bulbs to bloom in containers. This bowl contains 6 bulbs of the Daffodil (Narcissus) type called Paperwhites. They are a bulb that can be easily grown in a little container like this.

Paperwhites in potting media

Six paperwhite bulbs will be held in the refrigerator ready for early spring display.

You really do not have to chill them since Narcissus papyraceus ‘Paperwhite’ is a Mediterranean Daffodil that does not need chilling to bloom. If you want to have them timed for a certain holiday, some trial and error is in order. They say on the package that they will bloom in 4-5 weeks at room temperature. It is all dependent on the temperature that you keep them at. They like it quite cool on a windowsill. If you grow them at house temperature, they will get all leggy and fall over while they are blooming which is not nice. I plan to keep them in the refrigerator and hold them back until January 1 and then put them into the coldeest spot I can find. This will keep the stems short and they will bloom and smell nice without staking. I will try to post a photo if I pull this off.