The Best Shrubs to Choose and Steps to Encourage Blooms
Spring is a season of renewal and growth, and what better way to celebrate it than by bringing some of that beauty indoors? Forcing branches from shrubs and trees to bloom early is a delightful way to enjoy spring blossoms even before the weather warms up. Here's a step-by-step guide to help you through the process.
Types of Shrubs and Trees Suitable for Forcing
Popular choices of shrubs and trees are suitable for forcing.
- Pussy Willow
- Witch Hazel
How to Encourage Early Blooms
Step 1: Selecting the Right Branches
Choose branches with plenty of buds that are beginning to swell. Look for branches that are about 1 to 3 feet long and have a good shape.
Step 2: Cutting the Branches
Cut the branches at a 45-degree angle using sharp pruning shears. Make sure to cut just above a bud or side branch to encourage future growth.
Step 3: Preparing the Branches
Once inside, make a second cut under water to ensure that no air enters the stem. You can also split the base of the stem about an inch to help it absorb water more easily.
Step 4: Soaking the Branches
Place the branches in a tub of warm water and let them soak for several hours or overnight. This helps the buds to open.
Step 5: Arranging the Branches
Arrange the branches in a vase filled with warm water and floral preservative. Place them in a cool room with indirect sunlight.
How to Make Your Own Homemade Flower Preservative
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon household bleach
- 2 teaspoons lemon or lime juice
- 1 quart lukewarm water
Step 6: Caring for the Branches
Change the water every few days and mist the branches regularly. Keep them away from direct heat sources.
Step 7: Enjoying the Blooms
In one to three weeks, depending on the type of shrub or tree, the buds will start to open, and you'll have beautiful indoor blossoms to enjoy!
Forcing branches to bloom early lets you bring a touch of spring into your home even before the shrub has fully awakened from its winter slumber.