I received potted forced spring bulbs as a gift. How do I care for them?


I received potted forced spring bulbs as a gift. How do I care for them?


Tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, and other spring bulbs are frequently available from florists and garden centers in winter.  When purchasing these potted forced spring bulbs, select those that have fully developed buds but have not yet opened.  This will insure the longest bloom time at home.

tulips from the floristKeep forced bulbs in bright indirect light.  Temperatures should be relatively cool (60 to 65°F).  Rotate plants frequently to prevent flower stalks from bending towards the window.  Water containers when the soil surface is dry to the touch.  Water the plant until water begins to flow out the bottom of the pot.  The pots of most forced spring bulbs are placed inside decorative pot covers.  When watering the container, carefully remove the pot covering, water the plant in the sink, then drop the container back into the pot cover. Never allow the container to sit in water for long periods of time.

Tulips, hyacinths, and most other spring flowering bulbs are usually discarded after forcing. Most don’t bloom again when planted outdoors and attempts to force them again are usually unsuccessful. Daffodils, however, are an exception. Many forced daffodil cultivars perform well when planted outdoors. 

More detailed information on forcing spring bulbs can be found in this article: How to Force Spring-Flowering Bulbs Indoors.

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