Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Bloom Force


Bloom Force… it almost sounds like an action packed, good guy never dies type of movie title. Or could it be the code name of a secret mission conducted by a mysterious undercover agency? Better yet, is it possible that it’s what I get the urge to do in the middle of a gray January?

We’ll go with the latter since it’s a little less violent. Smile 

I’ve always wanted to force blooming tree or shrub branches to bloom indoors in the winter, but I never got around to doing it until this year.

The first week in February, I dug out my trusty clippers, donned my muck boots, tramped through a half a foot of snow and proceeded to chop off some branches. (pretty good movie so far?)

These are the different kinds I chose…







Before I stuck them in water, I used a hammer to split the ends of the twigs, allowing water to be better absorbed.


After I put them in water, I set them in the laundry room since it,s cool and dark in there. ( my laundry room is in the basement )



A few weeks later I was rewarded with beautiful Bradford Pear blooms!




The next one to bloom was the Forsythia…




I thought they didn’t bloom as fully as some I’ve seen in pictures but I was just so happy to see fresh color in our house so I didn’t complain. I’m sure there are some tips I could of followed to get better blooms but that can wait until next year.

I got a few little blooms out of the Dogwood…




The Lilac had a couple little blooms also, which I didn’t get a picture of. For a while I thought the Crabapple was going to sprout some color but sadly the little buds ended up wilting away.

My favorite was definitely the Bradford Pear. We don’t even have a tree, I got the branch from my sister’s tree. I felt like a common thief walking out and helping myself but she, of course, didn’t mind.

I would encourage anyone to do this, especially if you are like me and can hardly wait to get your fingers in the earth again and watch for those first spring blooms.

And if you don’t have any flowering trees and shrubs to force, you can always make your own!




I just used the pear branch after it was finished blooming and stuck it into a vase…



I cut out some circles out of white tissue paper…




I folded the paper so I could cut out multiple layers at once.

I folded each circle in four…



Next I cut a notch in each one…




Now the “buds” are ready to be glued onto the twigs. After fluffing them a bit, this is how they turned out…






I hope you enjoyed this first little glimpse of spring! Hopefully the next blooms I post will be surrounded by real soil, fresh spring air, bird songs and trickling water… sigh…I can hardly wait!

Good night everyone!