How to Grow Hyacinths Indoors


The Hyacinth belongs to a group of hardy spring flowering bulbs, many of which are popular for use in flower beds and for cultivation in pots indoors and in the greenhouse. Hyacinthus is the ancient Greek name used by Homer. There are more than thirty species known. They are chiefly natives of the Mediterranean Region and the Orient; two or three grow wild in tropical and southern Africa. They belong to the Lily family, Liliaceae.

"Hyacinths"

Pink Hyacinths

Hyacinth bulbs purchased for cultivation comes primarily from Holland. You will find that the bulbs will do very well when planted in pots or vases indoors, or in beds and borders in your yard and garden. They are frequently referred to as 'Dutch Hyacinths'. They do not require any specific type of lighting such as grow lights to come into bloom.

Winter Hyacinths

November to April it is possible to have Hyacinths in bloom in a greenhouse or window garden. The first to flower in November are the Roman Hyacinths which bear white flowers.

These are followed in December and January by the Cynthella or Miniature Hyacinths, which are specially grown and harvested early so that with only a moderate amount of heat the bulbs will develop flowers in midwinter.

Bulbs for Forcing

If very early blooming is desired, specially “prepared” bulbs of Hyacinths of the large-flowered type may be obtained for forcing into bloom. Hyacinths make excellent container plants. For early indoor flowers, prepared Hyacinth bulbs should be potted in September, stood in cold frame, and covered with 6 inches of sifted weathered ashes, sand or peat moss, care being take to keep these moist by watering with a fine spray when necessary.

When to Pot Hyacinth Bulbs

The bulbs that provide the best and earliest flowers are those which are well rooted before top growth begins; early potting is, therefore, necessary. Roman Hyacinths should be potted during late August, the Cynthella Hyacinths in early September, and the large-flowered varieties at the end of September or early in October.

How to Pot Hyacinth Bulbs

A first rate compost for Hyacinths in pots consists of three parts fibrous loam, one part each of decayed manure, leaf mold, or peat moss and coarse grit. When such a compost is not obtainable, the best available garden soil should be used an improved by adding to each bushel a peck of decayed manure an a gallon of coarse grit.

"Growing Hyacinths in Pots"

Growing Hyacinths in Pots

Pots of 5 to 6” in diameter are the most useful sizes for Hyacinth bulbs. Three bulbs of a couple of your favorite varieties are set in a 5” pot and five bulbs in a 6” pot. One good bulb of the large flowered kinds is sufficient for a 5” pot, and three bulbs can be placed in a 6” pot. Over the drainage material a little rough fibrous potting compost is then put in.

The bulbs should be pressed into the soil and more of this added to ensure that the bulbs are covered to three-quarter’s of their depth. The Hyacinth bulbs produce roots only from the bottom, so that there is no need to cover them entirely if you are using them for indoor cultivation.

Grow Hyacinths Without Soil

You may also like to try to grow hyacinths in a containers without soil. This method involves using a narrow necked container that allows the bottom of the bulb to remain submerged partially in water. There are special containers that can be purchased specifically for hyacinths.

*TIP-Be aware that most other types of bulbs require soil to grow and cannot be grown in this manner, as the bulb will rot.

Hyacinths are a great planting project for young children, as it doesn't require any skill to get them started. They will watch with amazement as the roots grow, and then green stems appear followed by beautiful flowers.

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