Narcissus Papyraceus

The frost hardy paper-white is well-known for its strong fragrance, and can be quickly and easily forced to flower in the winter by growing indoors. A relative of the daffodil, their pleasant flowers will be an unusual but welcome sight as the winter is drawing in.


To force Paper-whites to grow early keep them in a pot indoors. Put a layer of gravel at the bottom of the pot and sit the bulbs pointed end up. This will ensure that the bulbs sit in water and stimulate growth. Plant them close together to make sure you get a full display. Then cover the bulb leaving their tips still visible. Keep them in a cool, shady place until you see them forming shoots and then move into a sunny spot. It will only take 2-3 weeks from planting to flowering.


Keep the bulbs watered but do not let the whole bulb sit immersed in water as this will cause it to rot. Once the flowers appear, they will last longer if you move them into a less sunny spot. If you’re an expert grower, you may also want to prevent Paper-whites from getting top heavy by stunting the growth of their stems. Do this by watering with a solution that is about 5% alcohol once the shoots have formed.

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