Wednesday, January 18, 2012

DIY: How to Grow Paperwhites

To bring spring into our house a few months early, this year I planted paperwhites and loved watching them poke their green heads up out of the rocks and then those beautiful delicate white blooms pop up just in time for for their debut during this weekend Lunar New Year.  You have to plan ahead, at least 6 weeks is need to force bulbs to bloom, so I got mine prepared about 4 weeks ago.  Since I've had this paperwhite centerpiece on my entry table and mantle, everyone who walks in my house asks how I did it! So, thought I'd share with you guys.

Paperwhite bulbs also called Narcissus ( I got a bag from Home depot for $6)
Container  ( we got our clear vase at Micheal's for $2 and an old white ceramic planter from Ikea)
Some stones ( got at TJ Max for $2)
1. Use about half of your rocks to line the bottom of your container to create a nice little bed for the bulbs to rest on. 
2. Place a layer of Paperwhite bulbs very closely next to each other and wiggle them in a bit so they remain standing( if they topple over reposition the rocks beneath them to support them)  root end down. 
4. Then just add the rest of your rocks around so them to they feel more snug.  Leaving the tops of the bulbs exposed.
5. Add water until it reaches the base of the bulbs and set the container in a spot that does not get direct sunlight.  Watch them carefully, and  add water every time the level gets 1" below the surface.
6. After a few days, the bulbs should be sprouting;  move them to sunny spot and change your water routine with top secret ingredient for preventing the Paperwhite from topping over.
7. Hard liquor.  Using a tiny bit will stun the growth of the Paperwhites just enough so that they don't get too tall and fall over. To determine the amount of liquor (tequila, vodka, whiskey, etc.) you need to use/check the bottle for the percentage of alcohol, then  mix with water according to the following chart:
20% Alcohol = 3 parts water to 1 part alcohol
25% Alcohol= 4 parts water to 1 part alcohol
30% alcohol=5 part water to 1 part alcohol
So crazy eh? but it works. You still have time if you get out there right now and get you some paperwhite bulbs! You will love watching them grow! Good luck
For more info how to grow paperwhites click here

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Nami | Just One Cookbook said...

Would you come to my house to help me out? =) Lovely home decor!

kankana said...

This is so amazing! I stay in a apt, so you know gardening is out of the question. This year i want to do some indoor gardening and post made me very happy. :)
I do have 1 questions though .. how much of sunlight does it need ?

Jessie said...

Great tips, Mai. You are such a pro!

Have a lovely day!


Mai said...

HI Kankana !

After the bulbs sprouting just but it at direct sunlight :)
@ Jessie and Nami- Thank you for your kinds words

live love laugh said...

Me encanta el bloggg. voy a seguirte.
Pasa por el mio ;)

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