Growing Paperwhites

Paperwhite Narcissus

Paperwhite Narcissus is a type of daffodil native to the western Mediterranean. Paperwhites are one of the easiest bulbs to grow indoors and can produce up to twenty small, intoxicatingly fragrant flowers on each of its flowering stalks. Unlike regular daffodils, paperwhites are not winter hardy and do not need a cold chill to force into bloom. Just follow these simple steps and you’ll have beautiful, fragrant paperwhites blooming in your home.

1. Choose paperwhite bulbs that are firm and free from blemishes.

2. Select a shallow pot or bowl with no drainage holes. Width of pot depends on how many bulbs you plant.

3. Fill the container about 1/3 to 1/2 full with small gravel, stone or decorative marbles (pea size to 1/2" around).

4. Place the bulbs side by side on top of the gravel with the pointed end up.

5. Fill the space around the bulbs with the remaining gravel, stone or marbles so the bulbs will stand up straight. Leave the tops of the bulbs exposed.

6. Add water up to the base of the bulbs but no higher. Maintain this water level to keep the roots moist. Do not immerse bulbs in water because they may rot. No fertilizer is required.

7. For best results, place the bulbs in a sunny window until they begin to flower. Then move the bulbs from direct sunlight to the coolest area of your home to prolong the flowering time.

8. In 4-6 weeks you’ll have clusters of fragrant spring flowers. Blooms will last two to three weeks.

9. To have blooms throughout fall and winter, start a new pot of bulbs every two weeks.

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