Last Updated on November 8, 2022 by Cristina
Growing paperwhites indoors is easier than you might think and is a great way to put your gardening skills to use. They add a beautiful, elegant touch to your home that your guests will appreciate. They have a lovely fragrant smell that you can enjoy.
Paperwhites are particularly popular to grow during Christmas time and can make a wonderful Christmas decoration thanks to their white flowers. However, you can grow these beautiful flowers anytime during the year inside. Their dainty blooms make them a favorite among many gardeners.
What Are Paperwhites?
Paperwhites are a type of perennial bulb native to the Mediterranean. They are known for their beautiful pure white flowers but some cultivars may have yellow, orange, or bi-colored flowers.
Paperwhites can grow outside in zones 8-11. They can grow to be 12 to 18 inches tall with their blooms being about two to three inches big. The blooms of paperwhites are fragrant and the plant is fast-growing while also being disease and pest-resistant.
Can Paperwhites Be Grown Indoors?
Paperwhites can be grown indoors any time of the year and are a particularly popular choice to grow during the Christmas season. With the right steps, they can easily be grown indoors. Unlike other types of bulbs, they do not need to be pre-chilled before they flower.
How To Grow Paperwhites Indoors
Growing paperwhites indoors can be fun and easy. There are a couple of different methods you can use to grow the bulbs. You can grow them straight from bulbs to make a stunning flower arrangement.
Choose Your Container
Before you get growing you will want to choose the right container for your paperwhites. You need not need a special type of container or pot for growing paperwhites indoors. You can use a decorative saucer, bowl, or vase as long as it is big enough.
Growing Paperwhites In Soil – Growing Paperwhites Indoors
One option to grow your paperwhites indoors is in a pot with soil. You should choose a shallow pot that is about four to five inches deep with good drainage. Fill your pot about three-fourths full using an indoor potting mix.
Plant your bulbs so that the pointed ends are facing up so the tips are peeking above the soil. Depending on the size of your container, you can add around four to five bulbs. Water well, allowing the water to drain from the drainage holes.
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Growing Paperwhites In Pebbles And Water
One of the most popular ways to grow paperwhites indoors is in a container with pebbles and water. You can use a decorative bowl, vase, or saucer for this method. Fill your container of choice halfway with pebbles, decorative stones, marbles, or glass beads.
Then, place your bulbs on top with the pointed ends facing up. Depending on the size of your container you can plant four or five bulbs. Pack some more pebbles around your bulbs to help keep them in place but make sure that the pointed tips are still exposed.
Pour water into your container so that is no higher than the base of the bulbs. As your paperwhites grow, add more water to maintain the level.
Tips For Caring For Paperwhites
When growing your paperwhites in soil, water thoroughly when the soil is dry to the touch. When growing them in water and pebbles, maintain the water level at the base of the bulbs.
To extend the bloom of your paperwhites, keep them in a cool area with a temperature around 65 degrees Farenheit. Place them in a location where they will get bright, indirect sunlight. Some paperwhites can benefit from a stake or twine to keep them upright.
If you want to stunt the growth of your paperwhites you can do so by spiking the growing water with gin or another distilled spirit. These can reduce the heights of the stems by up to 50% without changing the size of the flowers. It is a good method to prevent your paperwhites from getting too tall and lanky.
Can Paperwhites Grow Again?
Since paperwhites are perennials, they will go again after they bloom. However, if you force them to bloom during the holiday season they may not re-bloom for two to three years.
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How Long Do Paperwhites Last Indoors?
Paperwhites will bloom for about two to three weeks when they are grown indoors. It typically takes about three to four weeks for the flowers to bloom once the bulbs are planted.
After the flowers are done blooming, you can enjoy the lovely green leaves of the plant for a few more weeks. While you can grow your bulbs again indoors, most people do not think it is worth the work and choose to buy new bulbs every year.
What To Do With Paperwhites After They Bloom Indoors?
After paperwhites bloom, you can enjoy the lovely green leaves for a few more weeks. You can also add the bulbs and leaves to your compost pile. You can save your bulbs but since they can take two to three years to re-bloom again after growing during the holiday season many don’t find it worth the trouble.
Growing Paperwhites Indoors: Everything You Should Know
Paperwhites are a great plant to grow indoors. The elegant pure white flowers make them a particularly popular choice to grow indoors during the Christmas season. While you can grow them outdoors in the spring, you can grow them indoors at any time of the year.
You can grow your paperwhites in a container with soil or a container with pebbles and water. Both methods will work well and your paperwhites will bloom for around two to three weeks. Unlike other types of bulbs, you can grow them without pre-chilling.
Provide your paperwhites with adequate water and aim to keep them in a cool location. They will do well in an area where they can get bright, indirect sunlight. You can grow them in pots, saucers, bowls, and vases.
Do you have any questions regarding growing paperwhites indoors? If so, please ask any questions regarding the care of paperwhites in the comments below.