Pickling your paperwhites, Narcissus papyraeus, causes shorter, stronger stems that do not flop over. Flowers are not affected. Yes. You read that right. According to research at Cornell University (in New York State), when forcing paperwhites indoors, replace the water with alcohol. Stems will grow short and sturdy. You can use any liquor which is less than 10% alcohol. Gin is good. Rubbing alcohol will work, in the right proportions. The method will work whether growing in soil or water. Do not use beer or wine---their sugars will harm the plant. Also, apparently the alcohol will exude its own fragrance. One person suggested using vodka, instead. For complete instructions, proportions and pictures, please see http://blogs.cornell.edu/hort/2009/11/10/pickling-your-paperwhites/. Fascinating! As a side note, I had a difficult time deciding about cropping this image. I would welcome suggestions.
Thank you for visiting! Your comments and suggestions are very much appreciated.
All my images are owned/copyrighted by me and no one is allowed to use them in any form unless I have give written permission for a specific use. Thank you.