Paperwhites make lovely, inexpensive gifts during the holiday season. They can be that perfect hostess gift or coworker gift. Although most gardeners would be thrilled with just a bag of bulbs, sometimes you want to dress them up a bit. One of my favorite ways is to preplant them in a decorated terra cotta pot. With just a little paint and some paint pens, it’s easy to have a festive looking package that will also become the planting container. By following the steps below, you can have several of these ready to give in no time
Decorated terra cotta pot & matching saucer (Make sure the saucer is the same size as the rim of the pot)
Several bulbs (here I’m using 4-5 bulbs in a 6″ pot)
Potting soil (Do not moisten soil. Moisture will cause the bulbs to start to grow)
Green Moss (Since you use very little moss I like to splurge on the really green stuff)
Place bulbs in pot along with some soil but do not water. Once you water, they start to grow.
Cover with some green moss to finish the top off.
Cover the pot with the saucer, tie your ribbon and you are done. You can add a tag with care instructions if you like.
Painting tips. You can paint the entire pot, but I prefer to do just the rim and bottom of the saucer. Sponge brushes work well for terra cotta and easily allow you to follow the edges to get a nice smooth line. Paint pens work well for adding details and inscription.
For instructions on forcing bulbs, check out Kerry Michael’s post on her container gardening blog. She has great bulb forcing instruction and tips on how to stop them from flopping with a bit of alcohol.