Forcing PaperWhite Narcissus Bulbs

While at the local nursery I found some PaperWhite bulbs 50% off and decided it would be a good way to add some life indoors during the dreary winter months.
This was a quick project; I just added a layer of pebbles to some pots, added soil, mixed in a tablespoon of  bone meal, plopped in the bulbs, covered with soil and watered. And let the trickery begin! After bulbs have experienced a cold period during the winter months (I’ve read 13 weeks is the minimum) they can be brought indoors into the warmer spring like temperatures and they will think its growing season.


I’ve read that they can be forced in pebbles alone. Either way, they can be placed almost shoulder to shoulder in a pot….much closer than when in the ground. They should be kept in a dark cool place until they start to grow but as you can see these have already sprouted so they’ll be out of direct sunlight for a couple of days then moved to the window. It is already quite cool at our place…generally in the low to mid 60’s during the day and low 40’s at night and dropping everyday so I’m not worried about them getting too warm in the planter window. Plus, it’s been overcast for what seems like a week. It is recommended to keep them cooler rather than warmer. They will supposedly grow slower but the blooms should last longer. We shall see! Also, watering tip according to the care card…the bottom of the bulb should touch water but the entire bulb should not be submersed or it will be prone to rot.

I have no experience with bulbs and after picking the staffs brain for a few minutes decided to get some bone meal they carry- E.B. Stone Organics Bone Meal- as it was highly recommended.  I have an outdoor bulb project coming up next week and it will be used for that as well. Some people say additives aren’t necessary as the bulb has enough food for the plant as is. Everyone has their own opinion. I decided to follow the suggestions of a successful gardener and draw my own conclusions.


Check back in a few weeks for an update and hopefully I will have pictures of my blooming PaperWhite Narcissus.

About Rhi

Rhi enjoys spending time with her family and working on the homestead. During spring and summer she is often found tending to her garden, and mini-orchard.

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  1. Hi! I just found your blog when I searched for self sufficient homes! My fiance and I are looking to build a new home very soon and we want it as self sufficient as possible… so I really enjoy your posts! Thanks!

  2. Congrats to you and your fiance on your self sufficiency journey! Thanks for the kind words…we’re always adding more projects so keep checking back.

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