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How to Force Blooms For Winter Flowers

Here are some easy tips on How to Force Blooms for Winter Flowers. Forsythia, Quince, and Fruit Blossoms are among my favorite.

Who said we have to wait until spring to enjoy fresh blooms? There are many early blooming plants that you can bring inside and start enjoying the blooms Right now.

Image of forced forsythia, quince, and fruit blooms in green bottles.
Photo Credit: Southern Living

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It was an honor to see the Home BNC share this post on their website. You can see their article – Best Flower Arrangement Ideas.

Are you ready? Grab your pruning shears and get started bringing a little sunshine to the inside.

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When To Force Blooms

January & February are perfect months to bring those bare branches inside and watch them bloom.
I’ve had great success with forsythia, quince, and most fruit stems. This includes peach, plums & cherry stems.

Most early-blooming plants set their buds in the fall. They must be dormant for at least six weeks before forcing.

All you need is to cut the branches with pruning shears and keep them moist until you are ready to arrange the stems.

Once ready to arrange, you want to make a fresh, angled cut to the stem.

If the stem is woody, you will want to either cut upward into the stem or gently crush the stem.

Cut off any branches that would be inside the container under water.

Next, fill your container with fresh water and arrange your stems.

If your container isn’t water-tight, you can use another vessel to hold the water. Here I’m using a large tin can inside the Vintage Sap Bucket.

Replace the water every few days to keep the stems from molding.

Place cut forsythia stems in containers with water to force blooms.

As you can see, even the bare branches look lovely in the correct container. I will update this post as they begin to bloom.

Forced Stems and Forced Bulbs

In addition to forcing stems to bloom, you can add bulbs to planters. Daffodils, Paperwhites, Amaryllis, and Tulips are all beautiful mixed with stems in Winter.

Here are 3 Paperwhite bulbs already showing their buds. You’ll be able to read about how to build a DIY Greenhouse.

Force blooms during the winter by cutting stems or bringing spring bulbs inside.

A forced Amaryllis bulb really brightens the house in Winter.

Forced Amaryllis Bulb brightens the farmhouse in winter.

Place Stems in a Warm Spot to Speed Forcing

Keep your arrangement in a warm area of your home. To speed up the process, you can place it in a warm window with a lot of sunshine.

You can see this tutorial to make the wooden heart swag.

Keep stems in a well lit, warm spot to help force blooms in winter.  To force blooms in winter.

After one week of forcing the blooms we are starting to see a few yellow buds.

Blooms will start to form quickly. force flowers to bloom early.

After just two weeks and three days, the stems are filling in with blooms. There are still several buds ready to open soon.

After two weeks, the forsythia branches are almost in full bloom.

Forced Blooms from Previous Seasons

Here you can see forced Forsythia blooms from last winter.

Use forced blooms for table arrangements.  Forsythia or yellow bell blooms in ironstone vase for winter table

Grace Prints are available here.

Here you can see plum blooms mixed with a button bush stem.

Fill containers with cut stems for early blooms.  How to force blooms in winter

A great way to use forced blooms is to mix them with your seasonal décor.

Mix forced blooms with other winter and early spring decor.

Each winter, this corner is filled with amazing blooms.

Forced Forsythia Stems in Sap Bucket in front of an antique barn door.

Thanks so much for stopping by today.

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How to force stems for winter flowers.  Easy to force blooms of forsythia or fruit blooms.
How to force stems for Winter Floral Arrangements - Forsythia or yellow bells, quince, and bulbs

Kristy Mastrandonas

Wednesday 8th of February 2023

I’ve never thought about doing this, but love the idea! Thanks so much for planting the seed!


Thursday 9th of February 2023

Kristy, Thanks for stopping by. I do this every winter. It helps to brighten the house.

Wendy McMonigle

Wednesday 8th of February 2023

Beautiful Rachel! You are so lucky to be able to go pick these stems.


Wednesday 8th of February 2023

Wendy, They grow like crazy here.


Wednesday 8th of February 2023

I don't have the trees or shrubs to do this from my own yard but Kroger, Trader Joes and garden nurseries will have branches to buy. Sadly these can be expensive to order but Terrain has them as well if you wish to pay. Love your green house you created Rachel. One day maybe we will have the land to do that too. If we don't retire to a beach area as my husband wishes...thanks for reminding me to pick up some branches..maybe a bulb or 2? :0)


Wednesday 8th of February 2023

Lori, You are welcome. I hope you find what you need. Also check with neighbors and friends.

Anne from Simply2Moms

Wednesday 8th of February 2023

Okay. This is my reminder that I need to plant some flowering shrubs this year so I can do this!! Love how they look in your house!


Wednesday 8th of February 2023

Anne, These do so well in the south. Come over and I'll give you all you need. Seriously.

Decorative Inspirations

Wednesday 8th of February 2023

Rachel, all your forces blooms look so beautiful in your home. I love doing this every year. Definitely helps when awaiting for spring. Have a great week. - Meagan


Wednesday 8th of February 2023

Yes, I agree. Thanks for stopping by.