Planting Bulbs Indoors

Category Bulbs
Bulbs can be grown indoors so that they bloom early, often in time for the holiday season. This is a page about planting bulbs indoors.


Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

February 11, 2010

I bought some bulbs called "PaperPlates", I put the bulbs in pots around Christmas. I could see them grow a 1/2 inch daily; well now they have bloomed. What do I do?

Do I cut them down till next year and store the bulbs? If I store bulbs how do I do that? Can someone help me? I do not have a green thumb and love plants and flowers indoors.

Hardiness Zone: 6a

By DeeDee from Muskegon, MI


February 11, 20100 found this helpful
Best Answer

Water until the foliage turns yellow, then brown, and finally dies down. After that, water should be withheld entirely and the bulbs stored away in a cool, dark place. This is the usual procedure when bulbs are to be forced a second time. Second forcing, in most instances, are very unsatisfactory; unless you are an expert, the practice is not recommended.


good luck.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
February 18, 20100 found this helpful
Best Answer

Any forced bulb will eventually (within 6mths-18mths) bloom again if planted outside. This is of course providing it normally grows in your Zone. The paper plates bulb referred to - could it perhaps be PaperWhites? As far as I know, it is a type of daffodil & will rebloom outdoors. I keep forced bulbs inside in their pots watered (well afer they have bloomed) & plant them outside early/mid May. They almost always bloom for me the next spring. I am a Zone 6a. Freesia, on the other hand, I have had no luck overwintering in my root cellar. Maybe too cold? Marg

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
Answer this Question...


ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.

February 11, 2010
By Ellen Brown

Planting Bulbs Indoors


Hello Ellen,

I Live in zone 6 or so and currently have freesia bulbs I want to plant but I want to grow them indoors. Do these bulbs need to be cooled for a period of time before planting? If so, for how long?


I also have some tulip bulbs that are starting to sprout that are not yet planted. I'd also like to grow them indoors. I understand there's a cooling period for these. If I can't put them in my fridge, what might my options be?

If I put them in my fridge, I've heard you can't have apples in the fridge. Is this true?

And finally, for what period of time would they have to be in my fridge or is it too late because they're beginning to sprout?

Thanks for any help you can provide from the one who loves only fragrant flowers.

Fragrance Lover


Fragrance Lover,

I'll answer these one at a time.

  • Freesia bulbs don't need chilling. In fact, they are one of the easiest bulbs to force indoors. Just pot them up (2 inches deep and 1 inch apart) and place them in a sunny windowsill. Bulbs (like freesia) that are only hardy to zones 8-9 are not designed for winter so they do not need pre-chilling.

  • How about a friend or relative's fridge? An unheated garage will work, too, as long as the bulbs don't freeze. Treated bulbs must be given sustained temperatures of 35-49 degrees.

  • Fruits, such as apples, pears and bananas, emit ethylene during the ripening process. This gas shortens the flowering period of nearby plants, or in some cases, renders them sterile. It's best to keep fruit out of the fridge while storing bulbs, and the fruit bowl away from flowering houseplants while in bloom.

  • The chilling period varies somewhat according to the type of Tulip, but most require a minimum of 13 to 18 weeks. Somewhere in the middle is probably safe. Going too long won't affect the bulbs, but taking them out too soon could result in the flowers not developing fully.

Good luck!


About The Author: Ellen Brown is our Green Living and Gardening Expert. Click here to ask Ellen a question! Ellen Brown is an environmental writer and photographer and the owner of Sustainable Media, an environmental media company that specializes in helping businesses and organizations promote eco-friendly products and services. Contact her on the web at

Comment Was this helpful? Yes

In This Page
Home and Garden Gardening BulbsNovember 3, 2016
Pest Control
Back to School Ideas!
Coronavirus Tips
Summer Ideas!
Ask a Question
Share a Post
Better LivingBudget & FinanceBusiness and LegalComputersConsumer AdviceCoronavirusCraftsEducationEntertainmentFood and RecipesHealth & BeautyHolidays and PartiesHome and GardenMake Your OwnOrganizingParentingPetsPhotosTravel and RecreationWeddings
Published by ThriftyFun.
Desktop Page | View Mobile
Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Contact Us
Generated 2020-07-23 16:31:38 in 1 secs. ⛅️️
© 1997-2020 by Cumuli, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Add to PageAsk a Question