HYACINTHS… in the garden & in the home

Hyacinths (Hyacinthus Orientalis) are a must have and one of the sweetest scented plants in spring.  Planted now (in Autumn) outside you’ll have to wait to see and smell their blooms, if that is too long to wait plant now in containers inside ready for an early treat.


Planting outdoors; plant bulbs now around 10cm deep in fertile well drained soil in sunshine or partial shade.  Plant close to your house, and along frequented pathways so you can fully enjoy its beauty, plant in groups of five bulbs for a full impact on your senses.  If you’re planting in containers outside protect the bulb from frosts by lining the container with bubble wrap before adding compost and planting.

My recommendations for Hyacinth Bulbs are:   ‘Yellow Queen’, ‘Miss Saigon’, ‘Jan Bos’. ‘Woodstock’, ‘Delft Blue’, and ‘White Pearl’.

Planting Indoors

There are two ways to grow Hyacinths indoors and it depends on your patience and style to which you may like to use.

The first traditional way of planting bulbs inside is to use a large shallow container and ‘force them’ by taking the watered planted bulbs to a cool dark place and leaving them for a number of weeks,  until they have sprouted around 5cm of growth.  By bringing them out into the light and warmth you will encourage the plant to grow and subsequently bloom.  


 I like to plant the bulbs in a variety of containers including willow bowls, glass dishes, antique washbowls, use what your imagination lets you!  Add some drainage to the bottom of the container and fill with compost to within an inch of the top.  Push the bulbs into the compost so half of the bulb is showing.  Water, and cover with moss, you can pin it down if you want to, use wire to make a ‘u’ shaped hook and push it into the soil at intervals.

Take the container (I make more than one at a time) and put it in a cool, dark place, check on them weekly, add a sprinkle of water if dry.  Between eight and ten weeks a green shoot will appear, once it is 5cm tall take your containers into your home somewhere light and warm.  Water them and watch them grow and flower.  You may need to use some supports for the flowers, I use something from the garden pushing it into the soil rather than canes, it looks more organic.


For Faster Blooms!

YOU WILL NEED TO BUY PRE-PREPARED BULBS, that is a bulb that has already been forced and chilled.

If you are too impatient to wait two months for your blooms try growing the bulbs in water.  This can be as simple as one bulb in one container or it can be about lots of bulbs in big glass vases.   The advantage of growing them in large, wide vases is the glass walls of the vase provide support to the heavy blooms.


carefully add enough water to just touch the bulbs, again as the roots grow keep the water to just touching the roots.   Soon you will have a vase full of blooms to fill any room with a heady, beautiful scent.

Be careful with the bulbs around pets and children, keep well out of reach, they are poisonous if ingested and they can also irritate skin so please where gloves when handling them.

For one bulb in one container, select a vase that has a neck where the bulb can sit.  Top the vase up with water so it is barely touching the bulb.  Keep in a light warm place and as the roots grow keep the water just touching the roots.  You will shortly have foliage and a bloom.  For a good effect plant three or five and line up together as a set, ideal for a window sill.

Alternatively select a wide, shallow glass vase and fill the bottom inch and a half with clean decorative stones.  Place the bulbs on top and