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Happy Holiday Plants with Spirits



This year I purchased an amaryllis bulb and paperweight bulbs. I haven’t bought either of these holiday flowers in years but decided to splurge this year. Now that my flowers have peaked, what’s next?

All of this led to me wondering, is it possible to keep holiday bulbs like amaryllis and paperwhites over for another year?

Upon searching the internet for insight, I came across a really surprising use of spirits for growing better paperwhites. According to the Miracle-Gro website, if given water with alcohol in it, the height of the paperwhites will be shorter. “Paperwhite bulbs grown in water with a 5% concentration of alcohol bloom beautifully on stems 1/3 shorter than paperwhites grown in unspiked water.”

If you are looking for information about growing paperwhites and amaryllis, check out these two Miracle-Gro pages: paperwhites page and amaryllis page.

The flowers on my paperwhites were delicate and small but the stems were very long and despite using a wood stick for support to help hold them upright, gravity finally forced them down permanently.

Now it’s time to decided what to do with my paperwhite and amaryllis bulbs for this year. If I grow paperweights again next year, I need to remember the water and alcohol solution.

In addition I have some questions:

Does the quality of the alcohol change the height of the paperwhites?
Does the amount of the alcohol make a difference, for instance would 10% alcohol water be better?
Will feeding a solution of water and alcohol to amaryllis bulbs be beneficial?
And the final question, what happens if you use a solution with 5% wine?


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