Gardening, Cooking and Decorating on the Prairie of Kansas

Welcome to Linderhof, our 1920's home on the prairie, where there's usually something in the oven, flowers in the garden for tabletops and herbs in the garden for cooking. Where, when company comes, the teapot is always on and there are cookies and cakes to share in the larder.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Reprise - Victorian Forcing Vases for Hyacinths

This was first published in February of last year.

With the winter we've had, it will be a while before spring bulbs pop their noses out of the garden soil. But we can have spring inside with spring bulbs -- hyacinths and paperwhites make spring come a bit earlier to the inside of Linderhof.

Every fall, I put some of my hyacinth bulbs in a paper sack and put that sack in the refrigerator. The bulbs need at least 12 weeks of "cooling" time in order to get them to burst into winter bloom.

What got me started was the blue vase. A Victorian Forcing Vase. I love anything blue and I had read about forcing hyacinths so when I bought it I knew what it was. That first hyacinth was a true treasure. The fragrance inside that winter was incredible.

Over the years, I've found two more, but, alas, not in blue. One is pink and the other more lilac than pink.

I'm forever on the lookout for more, but they are truly rare. Hopefully, my collection will continue to grow although slowly.

I love the way the sunlight shines through these colorful vases.

At a Lowe's (or Home Depot) one year after Christmas they had boxed hyacinths with forcing vases. Utilitarian, plain glass ones. But they do the job!
Another sunny window and three more hyacinths. I usually get the purple ones for these vases. They're at the bottom of the stairs and they do make the living room heady with their fragrance.

I can't imagine late January or February without hyacinths. It's a little bit of the taste of spring to come in March and April.

Please join Chari at Happy to Design to see everyone's Sunday Favorites.


Debbiedoos said...

So those really do work! They look beautiful and I have seen them and thought they would not do well....guess not glad I saw this!

Pondside said...

I love the perfume of hyacinths. Right now I have a gorgeous amaryllis blooming in the kitchen - four gorgeous blossoms!

Diann @ The Thrifty Groove said...

These are just so beautiful! i have absolutely no windows that get the sun to do this and I want to so bad! LOL

Very pretty!

Low Tide High Style said...

Hyacinths are truly one of my favorite flowers, they just say "spring" to me! And I've tried to find Victorian forcing vases like your beautiful examples to no avail! Maybe one day!

Kat :)

Troy said...

Hyacinths have held a specila place in my heart since I was a small boy. They were the very first thing that I planted all on my own, cared for and watched grow, all by myself.

What a magical feeling, to watch nature unfold before you eyes.

Keetha Broyles said...

Oh wow! How cool is that?

Maggie said...

I can smell the fragrance all the way over here in France, I love hyacinths, yours look lovely in the their special vases.

Mrs. Mac said...

I have one forcing vase and found that small 8 ounce wine carafes work well too. The forced bulbs do make a long winter tolerable while waiting for spring. Your home reminds me of what my great grandmother's home looked like with roses on the wall and fine china dishes ... I have some 8x10 photos of her parlor that I treasure. Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Chari at Happy To Design said...

Hi Martha...

What a great post, my friend! This is all new to me! I have never tried growing these fabulous flowers in the house! This is the first I've ever read about how to "force" a hyacinth to bloom early! Love your Victorian forcing vases...they're gorgeous!!! I have never, ever seen one...they must be rare! Your hyacinths are simply gorgeous...I think the lavender is my favorite! Ohhh...I bet they do smell wonderful!

I learn something new everyday! Loved this post, Martha..thank you so much for sharing it with us today for Sunday Favorites!!! Ohhh...your beautiful flowers are such a welcomed sight! Don't know what kind of weather you've been having in Kansas...but I woke up to a very cold and foggy day this morning! We are suppose to get more snow today...yuk! I am sooo ready for Spring!!!

Have a super Sunday, my friend!
Chari @Happy To Design

Mary Bergfeld said...

I love those blue vases. They are gorgeous! Hyacinths are my favorite spring flower. I love their scent.

Allie and Pattie said...

I am definitely going to look for those! How lovely!
xoxo Pattie and Allie

Katie Olthoff said...

mmm...I love the smell of hyacinths! I can almost smell them already!

Americana Lady said...

Well, I am going to keep an eagle eye out for these vases now. I have never forced bulbs indoor but I would like to try this next year. Thanks for the post, Joan

Glenda/MidSouth said...

I love the smell of hyacinths, but have never forced any. I have a cobalt blue forcing vase that I bought years ago at Wm. Sonoma's outlet. Don't think I would get the right sun light in my windows.
Thanks for sharing yours.