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Brighten your space with winter blooms around

You have to coddle most bulbs to get them to bloom in winter. The better you orchestrate the necessary sequence of heat, light and moisture, the better the blooms.But take heart: A few kinds of daffodils and crocuses can be coaxed into bloom with little or no effort. The easiest daffodils to force into bloom are the Tazettas, which include luminescent Paperwhites as well as golden Soleil d'Or. Most daffodil bulbs need some cold to get roots and flowers going; Tazettas do not.

The only thing Tazettas need to get them going is moisture.Plant them in a flowerpot or even a pebble-filled bowl that is at least 3 inches deep. With staggered planting, you can enjoy the delicate beauty of the blossoms through winter, as late as February.Because they don't need weeks of chilling before getting ready to show themselves, Tazettas are the daffodils to grow for blossoms on or before Christmas. For even earlier blossoms, grow autumn crocuses.

Plant them just as described for the Tazettas. In contrast to the Tazettas, which can't grow outdoors where winters are cold, autumn crocuses can grow outdoors practically everywhere, so you could have them blooming both indoors and outdoors.

A number of crocus species are autumn blooming. One of the prettiest is the aptly named Showy Crocus, whose thread-like, orange stigmas (the male flower parts) poke up through a cup formed of pale blue petals. Read Full Article Winter Blooms

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