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Paperwhite narcissus

Paperwhites are relatives of the daffodil and are one of the earliest winter bulbs to bloom. In the spring and summer, plant a few bulbs every few weeks and you’ll have blooms through late fall and early winter. These plants do well in a shallow dish filled with stones and water, but planting them in 6” pots gives you more freedom when it comes to decorating. When planting, fill your pots with 3” of moist growing mix and plant the bulbs so they’re almost touching. Cover your bulbs with a bit more soil and water. As the bulbs begin to sprout you can transfer them into different decorative pots for the season.

Tips for Growing Paperwhites:


  • Container should be slightly deeper than the height of the bulbs.
  • Add a layer of washed pebbles to the container.
  • Place the paperwhites in the pebbles.
  • Fill in around the bulbs with remaining pebbles.


  • Water the container to just below the bottom of the bulbs.


  • For the first week, keep the planter somewhere cool and dark.
  • After that, move the planter to a bright location with indirect light.


  • Paperwhites take an average of 3-4 weeks to bloom.

Saving Blubs:

  • Unfortunately, paperwhite bulbs cannot be saved for another season of bloom; dispose of them once they stop blooming.

Check out more gardening tips and guides from Ashcombe here.

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