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Bringing Spring Inside: A lovely DIY for dark winter days.

Once the tustle to get the Christmas decorations down is done; the tree is out into the right bin on the right day and the remaining decorations and lengths of fairylights strewn across the floor are neatly rolled up and wrestled back into the loft; we can’t help but start to look forward to Spring.

Isn’t it funny how quick we are to forget the sparkle of Christmas in favour of the calmer, gentler pace of Spring, in only a matter of weeks? Even though this Christmas was very different for all of us it hasn’t changed our craving for all things green! If anything, this year we need our fix more than ever!

It’s easy to forget that Spring doesn’t follow Christmas as quick as we’d all like and that actually on this side of the hemisphere, it technically doesn’t kick off until mid-March. And that’s a long time to wait. And sometimes you can’t help but get a little impatient…

During the first lockdown so many of us sought solace in our gardens or in the outdoor spaces we’re lucky enough to have in stomping distance. There’s nothing that being outside can’t help: The feeling of warm sun on bare skin; the calming breeze filling up your lungs with each breath and green as far as the eye can see! But what we enjoyed most was tinkering in the garden: the feeling of soil in between your hands; planting things – nurturing them and watching them bloom and blossom.

Whether you found yourself an ‘all-of-a-sudden’ houseplant-grower extraordinaire or enjoyed your very own home-grown tomatoes for the first time ever. Or just enjoyed the bright green grass of Bitts Park on your lunch-time stomp each day. You know it helped. Probably more than ever before.

Whilst we’re no stranger to layering up and getting outdoors regardless of the temperature, we’ve really been missing pottering. So naturally we’ve been looking for ways to get our fix. Since it’s a little too cold Up North to even consider planting seeds yet {unless you have a particularly cosy greenhouse and are happy to tuck your little ‘uns in each night with a bedtime story!}. We’ve been raiding our leftover bulb stash….

Did you know you can bring a bit of Spring inside by growing some bulbs on your windowsill?! It’s called ‘forcing’ and it’s the perfect way to brighten up the darker days. You can even get little fingers involved.

Basically, forcing a bulb is just a way of convincing it that it’s Spring already. One of the best bulbs to do this with is a Hyacinth. Not only do they bring a flash of green and some much needed colour in a short while, but they also smell beautiful too. If there’s one scent that reminds us of Spring it’s the humble Hyacinth.

Hyacinth bulbs are usually pre-chilled and are ready to plant and flower indoors in early Winter. So in theory, they’ve had their ‘pretend Winter’ and once you plant them indoors in a much warmer environment there’s no stopping them! They’re as eager for Spring as we are even if theirs is a pretend one!


* a handful of small indoor pots. We’ll be popping one bulb in each pot. We love to use old jam-jars because you can see the beautiful roots as they uncurl and grow, even before the plant shoots. And isn’t that as much a part of the beauty?!

* Some all purpose compost. Just enough to tuck in and cover around and just a gentle dusting for the top of the bulb.

* A little tap water.

And that’s it! Some people choose to pop a little grit or sand at the very bottom of the pot to help with moisture too but we’ve never bothered and never suffered for it!

All you need to do is put a couple of centimetres of compost at the bottom of your chosen pot; add a very small amount of water and then pop your Hyacinth bulb in the right way {roots to the bottom obviously!}. Then it’s just a matter of tucking it in with a little more compost up the sides and enough to just cover the top.

Pop your pots wherever you like! Hyacinths like a little light, just not too much. So windowsills that get a little sunshine are fine. We dot our pots all over the shop: On the sideboard, a little row on top of the fireplace and even a couple dotted about on the dresser in the bedroom.

It won’t be long before you see those green shoots….just remember to keep the compost moist but not too wet because remember we haven’t got any drainage holes and too much moisture could cause those beautiful roots trouble!

You can try your hand at forcing lots of other spring bulbs like Iris, Narcissi and Freesia too but just make sure to check you don’t need to pop them away in a paper bag in a cool spot for a few weeks first. Whilst you can trick them, they do need a pretend Winter and a pretend Spring! That’s exactly why Hyacinths are a super-duper easy option! Especially if you want to see quick results.

We’ll always associate Spring with new beginnings and with hope. When you gaze out of a window at the moment it’s hard to imagine all of the green that’s to come. But it will! And we need it this year more than ever! Imagine how much more we’ll all treasure it this year?! The days are already stretching their ‘legs’ and lasting a little longer.

Give us a nudge if you have a go at forcing your own bulbs inside…better still send us a photo! We’ll keep you up to date on our progress too!


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