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Forcing Hyacinths

mchuamchua Posts: 179
edited December 2022 in Plants
Hello I’ve been forcing three bulbs in one pot for 13 weeks, two of them are ready to come into the light with the shoots at 4cm high, but the other is lagging behind at barely 1cm after 13 weeks. Should I wait for it to catch up to the required height or just bring the pot into the light now?


  • AnniDAnniD South West UKPosts: 11,009
    I haven't forced hyacinths for a few years, but if there was one lagging behind, l still brought the pot into the light .
    I always found that they came up a different times, l never seemed to get a beautifully equal display.

  • mchuamchua Posts: 179
    Ok I’ll bring them out and see how the small one develops. 
  • mchuamchua Posts: 179
    Extremely frustrating. They were chilled for a good 14 weeks as well, and doesn’t look like the flower stem will grow much higher. Confused. 
  • mchuamchua Posts: 179
    Trying not to get downhearted and want to sus out what went wrong.  Guess it’s just experiencing the ups and downs of gardening. 

    We had two and a half weeks of solid of -6 temps in the south which didn’t happen for a while. 

    They were in the garage and it had frozen the compost. So I brought them into the loft instead to let the compost soften up again.  

    I decided to leave them there, still covered in newspaper to keep them dark, but obviously it was warmer.  Maybe that change in temperature has affected the growth. 

    Also, rather than going by the 12 week cooling period, I may just go by the height of the shoot. If it takes longer than 12-13 weeks to reach 5cm high then so be it.  Just wait.  I think that’s a better signal to go by rather than just purely counting the weeks.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 49,121
    I've never forced hyacinths, I leave them outside in pots or in the ground, but the swings in temp might have had something to do with it. 
    Hopefully they'll settle and come away. They look healthy so I think you'll get a result. Lots of plants are readily affected by long spells of drought/heat/wet/cold, whereas a short spell of extreme weather has less effect - generally speaking.
    Spring bulbs in many areas [including here] have been coming through early due to mild autumn weather which prompted growth, but they settle down when it's colder, and usually still flower around the same time, with a variation of a week or so either way. It's how it is  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 82,251
    Each year brings slightly different conditions and my hyacinths respond slightly differently each year. They look a bit different but have never failed to flower and always smell wonderful. I’m happy with that. 
    I’ve never expected perfection. 😊 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 49,121
    Not something I've done @Dovefromabove, so I wasn't sure if it was simply down to conditions. Glad you've reassured @mchua :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • mchuamchua Posts: 179
    Thanks and yes I’m expecting different results each year now definitely.  I have one more in the garage at the moment which is in a carafe glass, so you can see the roots.  I wanted to try that method, root development looks good so far.

    The ones in the photo are flowering now, just a bit swamped by the foliage as the stem didn’t grow tall unfortunately. 
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