Paper Whites

This is one of my favorite holiday traditions.  I buy several dozen paperwhite bulbs, and as many as I can rationalize of amaryllis bulbs (they can be expensive).  I start half of the bulbs the minute I get in the Christmas spirit.  I start the second half of the bulbs when the first round begins to wilt. It is such a treat to have them continue through January which can feel too spare after the glory of December.

To force bulbs:

Find a water tight vessel that works with your holiday decor.  Wide glass vases, copper pots, and white ceramic are my favorites. Fill the bottom a couple inches with marbles or small rocks.  Place bulbs in root side down. I cover the rocks with the paperwhite bulbs.  They don’t mind being crowded. You will need to stake them as they get big and top heavy. I use a discreet chopstick and a big satin bow. Fill the container up to the bottom of the bulb.  Every few days you will want to add more water.