Sunday, November 16, 2008

My Winter Garden...

I love paperwhites! To me, they are the ultimate in instant gratification (relatively speaking) in the plant world!

During the Adventure to the Midwest, Ms A and I were driving from one of our favorite haunts to the next and she commented that we were passing a garden center that had the same name as the one near our former home. I swung into the parking lot! I had intended to put paperwhites on the list of "things to buy that are not available in the desert" (along with Maple Nut Creams from Russell Stover, Gravy from Stroud's, salad dressing from Pizza Shoppe for Dear Niece M, who was kitty sitting, chocolate/vanilla twist ice cream cone). Luckily, Ms A reminded me!

We bought paperwhites and hyacinth bulbs for forcing. They were even on sale!! It was hard not to get carried away and get crocus and bulb iris, but there are only so many containers that I can protect from "cat grazing".

Usually I start paperwhites in January, but this year, I decided to plant early and perhaps have a live Thanksgiving centerpiece. I may have delayed too long for Thanksgiving blooms, but it we will see...

This is my recipe:

Ingredients - five paperwhite bulbs, lovely bowl and small pebbles.

This is the first year that I have used a crystal bowl. In the past I have used a ceramic bowl, but I thought the crystal would look a little "fancy" for the holidays.
Next, put the rocks in the bowl.
I bought these rocks about five years ago. Each year, I wash them and let them dry on newspapers and paper towels. (The first time, The Mister was very puzzled as to why I was washing rocks!)

Next, nestle the paperwhite bulbs into the rocks. The rocks need to be about half way up the sides of the bulbs for stability. The flower stalks will get to be about 12" to 15" tall.

Add water up to the top of the rocks and wait for the magic to happen!


Iron Needles said...

Ohhhhh! I can't wait to see what has happened by the time I get there...let's see...this time next WEEK!!!!! Are you ready????

Anonymous said...

I hope you will grace us with a picture of the "finished product"..I don't know what "Paper Whites" look like. WS

Heidi said...

That is going to be SO pretty!!! I love paper whites - I call them Peacock orchids or are they 2 differant things??? LOL Thanks for stopping over to my blog. :) Store lard is actually not very good for you - it has transfats added back to it - not to mention is is so over process it doesnt need to be refrigerated! LOL Hope you come back again soon!!!