Garden Tip: Force branches to bloom early flowers
By Heather Prince www.thegrowingplace.com March 14, 2013 4:08PM
Force spring flowering branches, like forsythia shown here, to bring the season indoors. | Courtesy of Heather Prince
Updated: April 18, 2013 6:22AM
It’s easy to force flowering branches to brighten up your spring. Many trees and shrubs can be snipped and brought indoors. Some of our favorites to use include forsythia, quince, cherry, redbud, pear, crabapple and pussy willow.
Branches force best when cut on a warm day. Twigs snipped now may open in just one to two weeks. You’ll need pruners, branches, a bucket filled with warm water, bleach, and a vase or container. Gather and snip branches at least 12 inches long, using the pruners to make clean cuts. Use sharp pruners and be selective, considering the shape of the plant as you cut.
You might also want to smash the ends with a hammer to prevent cuts from healing over. Place fresh stems in the bucket of warm water to which one tablespoon of bleach has been added. Keep branches out of the sun and mist occasionally. Once buds begin to swell, arrange the stems in a sturdy vase or container and enjoy!
Celebrate spring at The Growing Place on Saturday, March 23, during the opening day celebration featuring the Morton Arboretum at the Aurora location on Montgomery Road. See www.thegrowingplace.com for details.
Garden Tip is courtesy of Heather Prince, The Growing Place, 630-355-4000, www.thegrowingplace.com