Monday, February 27, 2012

Forcing Branches to Bloom

Am I the only one who gets serious spring fever about now?  It doesn't help that we keep having  warm days only to head right back down into the twenties the very next day.  Teaser!  I love more than anything to have fresh flowers in my house and about this time of year it is easier than you might think to achieve that Pottery Barn blooming branch look for absolutely free!  Just head outside and get to clipping. 
Faux Plum Blossom Branch from Pottery Barn.
Faux branches have their place but why use them when you can have the real thing!!

February and March are the perfect time of year to start forcing branches.  It can take from a couple days to up to 8 weeks to see blooms on your branches.  Here is the process I use. 

1.  Find your tree or bush that blooms in spring.  Forsythia, Dogwood, Crabapple, and Cherry are my favorite and all force easily.  I used forsythia here and am cutting my Dogwoods to force into bloom next week. The forsythia took me about 3 weeks ( I cut the beginning of February).

2.  Look for branches around dime size diameter with beginning buds and lots of them.  Cut more than you think you'll need because some of them will not work.

3.  Cut and put straight into a bucket of water.

4.  I bring mine to the rarely used downstairs shower and give them a good bath in tepid water. 

5.  Cover with a trash bag and close the curtain.  If you can't put them in a dark area then use a dark trash bag.  The trash bag keeps the humidity up and moves them along quicker.  Change your water every few days.  A 65-70 degree area works best.

6.  In one to eight weeks depending on the branch and how close they were to bloom at the time of cut, you will have your beautiful flowering branches!

It really is that easy.  Step 7... show them off!  Change your water every few days and they'll last from 1 to 3 weeks depending on the type of branch.

These shots were taken in my entry.  Here are some things you should know....

1.  We can't pick a wall color.  Ever.  Recurring problem.

2.  There is another mirror in the garge with much better scale for this spot.  I've been too lazy to hang it.

3.  I've had this fabric draped over the dining room chair for 3 months.  I'm going to use it very "soon".

4.  The bookcase is going to get painted very "soon" as well.  (Your "soon" and my "soon" might mean entirely different things :-)

Now, go cut some branches!   Think  how beautiful they are going to look on your Easter table and without spending a penny!

all crafts Homemade Projects ~ Add Yours! {2/28}


  1. Your branches look beautiful. Spring is coming ;) and this is a beautiful reminder.

  2. I would love to do this, now I just need to find a warm dark spot for the bucket! The forsythia by my porch is a crazy thing and needs to be shorn!

  3. WOW - i didn't know you could do this to make branches blossom - very good to know :)

    Love for you to share this at my Wednesday's "Made by ME" linky party here:

  4. Thanks for the tutorial! I would love to do this and have fresh flower branches blooming in my house! :)

  5. Love it- and definitely going to try this. I have forsythia and also a beautiful quince (sp?) that I would love to try this with. Thanks for sharing at FNF :)

  6. This is so good to know! Thanks for sharing!!

  7. This is a fantastic tutorial! This leaves me longing for spring!! Thanks for sharing at oopsey daisy!

  8. Awesome post and tutorial! So glad you shared this with us last weekend at Inspiration Friday! :-)

  9. Of course, I'm swooning over this post and your pretty yellow branches (when do I not swoon over your blog??)

    I'll be featuring this post tomorrow (or later today, depending on your time zone!) ;-)

  10. I'm sorry but I don't understand why force them to bloom when they will do that in the tree and you can cut them then. Am I missing something?

    1. The only reason you would force blooms is to get them early. I had blooming branches more than a month before I had blooms in my yard!

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