Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Forcing Spring



I am most likely the only person in the northeast who is disappointed by the incredibly mild winter we have had, but I will admit the grey, bland countryside is beginning to make me a little crazy.  So, to brighten these long, grey days a bit I've decided to force spring upon us a little earlier than usual.  Forcing, according to our friend, Katherine Whiteside (author of several garden books including, Forcing, etc., is "the magic that happens indoors when bulbs think that summer has arrived." While her book describes, in detail, how to force certain bulbs from another hemisphere to bloom in your winter kitchen, she also explains that woods, fields and many backyards contain twigs that can be cut and coaxed into "springlike blooms and leaves."  Gardening is as foreign to me as learning Chinese, but this is a little tip anyone can perform! Forsythia, a huge, gorgeous yellow plant that blooms like mad in our area in mid-March, is as abundant as Starbucks in LA.  A week ago Joe cut a bundle, placed them in a vase and plopped it in our kitchen window.  A few days later the beautiful yellow bulbs popped like strippers jumping out of a cake (bottom photo).  Today I hit the yard with a pair of scissors and several vases, filled them with water, added twigs and placed them in direct sunlight.  Hopefully by the weekend as the temperatures dip back down below freezing, our living room will be filled with little pops of sunshine!