Are you full of fresh New Year energy right now? Do you want to keep that feeling going all year long? Bright green shoots and beautiful fragrant flowers are an easy way to keep your space fresh and alive. Don't want to wait until Spring? Don't worry!
Paperwhites are often considered a Christmas flower but I love to have them growing in the New Year. New to the paperwhite game? No problem. Keep reading to get all your questions answered in the post below. You can also jump right over to the shop and get your Paperwhite kit to get started now: https://www.hortikiplants.com/shop
Why plant paperwhites?
Paperwhites are part of the narcissus family which includes spring favorites like daffodils. They are tall and fragrant and grow very quickly indoors.. Blooms can appear in only 4 weeks and it’s fun to watch their quick progress.
Fun fact: You're probably familiar with the term narcissism which is defined as "excessive interest in or admiration of oneself and one's physical appearance". Does that have anything to do with this family of beautiful flowers? According to Greek Mythology it does indeed!
In Greek Mythology Narcissus was a hunter who became enraptured by his own beauty. Eventually he turned into a beautiful gold and white flower... a narcissus flower.
Since they grow so tall, will the plants fall over?
Maybe. So far mine are doing well in short 6" containers. Primarily because I add additional pebbles as the plant grows to keep the roots carefully anchored. You can also add stakes to keep them upright. But even if they do bend they are still gorgeous! Enjoy them in their lack of perfection.
Does adding alcohol to the water work to shorten the stems?
According to a study done at Cornell University - yes. I haven’t tried it. If you decide to try, be careful to follow the instructions so that you don't intoxicate your plant. http://www.hort.cornell.edu/miller/bulb/Pickling_your_Paperwhites.pdf
I've heard that these flowers have a very strong fragrance, is that true?
Ha! Ok. So the blooms are very fragrant. Some people don’t like the smell, but some do. Grow them near a window for light and open it as needed if you find the scent overwhelming. Or, if you really don’t like the smell, give them to a frenemy just before they bloom. (Tee-hee! Just kidding!)
How long does it take to grow paperwhites?
4-6 weeks to bloom but I really like seeing the green shoots. It's also fun to plant new bulbs each week, see the shoots in different stages and know what’s coming.
Does the plant need sun, can I grow it in my windowless office?
The shoots will grow without light but you will need to expose the buds to light when the flowers are ready to bloom.
Are paperwhites toxic to pets?
Yes. Particularly the bulbs. Learn more here: https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control/toxic-and-non-toxic-plants/paper-white
If your pets are constantly eating your plants, consider buying them a plant they actually can eat. Check out this post on pet grass to learn more: https://www.hortikiplants.com/post/hortiki-plants-pet-grass-a-hit-at-dcstatefair
Where can I get paperwhites?
Well… since you asked! I do have some up in the Hortiki Plants shop! Check out the paperwhite kit here: https://www.hortikiplants.com/product-page/winter-white-done-right-paperwhite-kit.
You can check with you local nurseries but many will be out of stock until the end of the year. If that is the case you can likely still find them online from bulb specialty growers.
Are there any other flower bulbs I can plant now?
If you have had a mild winter so far and the ground isn’t frozen, you can still try planting bulbs outside. You can also try planting some in pots that you set outside. If you act fast you could get 8-10 cold hardening weeks, which may be just enough to set your bulbs up for success this spring. Check out the Fall Gardening Guides for specific varieties that will do well in containers:
What else can I plant now?
Ensure you are on-time all the time, with the FREE 2019 Plants at a Glance Calendar. Click here to download now!
Victoria - I love Hortiki, you always give great information but what is it all about?
Hortiki Plants provides eco-friendly gardening supplies for beginner and small space and gardening.
I created Hortiki Plants to:
Inspire you to transform your space and your life with plants.
Motivate you to get started now.
Educate you so that you feel secure that you are doing it right.
Equip you with the stuff you need without the stress
Have more questions? Let me know in a comment below.
Plant Love for Life,
Founder, Hortki Plants