Monday, February 4, 2013

Forcing Branches of Flowering Shrubs: One Way of Coping with the Winter Blues

Forsythia blooming on kitchen windowsill

I manage to deal with GWS (Gardening Withdrawal Syndrome) in January and February by bringing in shrubs to force. The easiest is Forsythia and this year the buds were beginning to swell in late December. A friend brought some forsythia to our New Year’s Party and by mid-January they were blooming inside.

I had planned to force some witch hazel which usually blooms early February. I usually bring in a branch for forcing in late January but this year my witch hazel beat me to it and started blooming outdoors the third week of January.

Witch Hazel blooming outdoors in mid-January

The sprigs of witch hazel which usual grace our breakfast room table in February were on the table in mid- January.

What other surprises does our changing climate have in store for me this season???

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