Spring seems to take forever to get here after a long, cold winter. A little display of spring bulbs can make the world of difference in your outlook.
These kinds of planters require a bit of prior planning, because they need to be planted in the fall to make a spring display.
Most bulbs have to undergo a period of vernalization, where they are allowed to produce their roots in above freezing but cool temperatures and then brought into a warm room when they start to sprout in the spring.
This process is called 'forcing' but there is no cruelty involved; it just means that the plants are encouraged to bloom a little earlier than they normally would.
Choose the pale yellow kinds of Primula if you like that springlike scent. Many bulbs like hyacinths are also scented with a delicate, sometimes quite strong fragrance.
Violets and Primulas are often seen in combination with spring flowering bulbs. They are actually perennial, so once the warmer weather arrives, all these as well as the bulbs can be planted outdoors to bloom again in their proper season next year.
Small varieties of daffodils are best for displaying indoors as quite often, the limiting factor is light, or lack of it. They require bright light from a south or west window to stop them from stretching.
Hyacinth flowers open in sequence, giving a long season of bloom. Plant them outside in a garden bed where they'll continue to open their bell shaped flowers early every spring. Pink, white, red and blue are the most common colors.
Tulips have been developed to please every taste, from colorful to sombre, frilled, scalloped and cupped.
Spring bouquets and planters give us a little foretaste of the season to come; bring some spring indoors to help with the winter doldrums.