Your knees were creaking and your back was aching, but your bulbs were now nestled in their holes, safely underground, waiting for spring. All winter, with its bare branches and mono-colored landscape, you dreamed of sunshiny daffodils, pastel hyacinths, an entire palette of tulips. Then, finally, the weather warmed and the first green leaves appeared. With mounting anticipation, you checked the daily progress of those early flowering bulbs. And then—finally!—the buds appeared, the flowers opened… and flopped over.
Imagine that it’s wintertime. Anything verdant and green has long turned to brown. Limbs lie leafless. A few berries may yet hang on the shrubs. We’re already eager for spring, but the growing season is still months away. Wouldn’t this be the perfect time to enjoy bright red tulips, or the sweet aroma of blooming narcissus? If you want to enjoy these and other mid-winter flowers, now is the time to start forcing bulbs.
Pretty much any spring bulb can be forced. All we have to do is fool them into thinking that spring has arrived—in the middle of January. To do that, we have to plan ahead—up to 15 weeks ahead.