I think each year I won't bother with amaryllis and other flowers forced into winter bloom. After all, I've grown them in the past, I know what they look like, so why grow them again?
Why grow them again? If you think that's an actual question, then you aren't an actual gardener and you can just mosey right along now to some other website about "plastic flowers are as good as real flowers" or some such nonsense to validate your non-gardening self. The garden fairies will now show you the virtual exit.
Everyone else, please stay and keep reading. You are gardeners. You understand. The garden fairies will now serve you some tea and tiny cookies to sip and eat while think about forcing some of your own winter flowers into bloom.
I like to have a few amaryllis blooming in December, followed by hyacinths forced to bloom in January and February.
And that's just the beginning.
Yesterday, I planted up a few pre-chilled Lily of the Valley pips which should be blooming later in January.
I also have some crocus corms in the refrigerator that I need to pot up soon, along with some reticulated iris bulbs I held back from fall bulb planting because I read they are easy to force into bloom with no chilling requirements. And I'm going to buy some paperwhite bulbs because I can't stand not having them, even if it is the variety from the big box store that doesn't smell that great.
I love my winter flowers and wouldn't end the year or begin the year, as the case may be, without forcing some into bloom. They keep my hands in the dirt, which I think is essential for good health. Plus, you get flowers.
And flowers are always good to have around.