Forcing Forsythia - Knowledgebase Question

Derry, NH
Question by sjcoffee
December 31, 1997
My mother in law told me she had friends who had great success in cutting forsythia branches in mid-winter and getting them to bloom. Is there any special technique for this?


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Answer from NGA
December 31, 1997

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This is a great, fun way to enjoy your flowers even in the dead of winter!

I would wait until early February and then cut branches which have buds on them. Try to pick branches that you've slated for pruning out anyway so you don't ruin the shape of your forsythia bush. Using a sharp knife or shears make a clean diagonal cut. Crushing or making a slit in the base of the branch where it will be submerged in water will help it take up the necessary water. It should take between 10-21 days for your forsythia to bloom. I guarantee that although this may be the first time you do this, it definitely will not be the last! (Try it with fruit tree branches as well!)

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