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Easy Spring Project: Forcing Branches to Bloom Indoors

Add a touch of spring to your space by forcing branches to bloom indoors. So easy, budget-friendly, fresh and pretty!

Forcing Branches to Bloom Indoors

Ready to perk up your space for spring? I have an easy project for you today!

This one requires a little patience, but nothing compared to forcing spring bulbs. When forcing branches, you’ll start to see changes in days with most, not weeks. I love watching the blooms unfold in anticipation of spring.

How to Force Branches to Bloom Indoors

If you have a tree or shrub in your yard that flowers in the spring, that’s all you need. Some examples are:

  • cherry
  • crabapple
  • forsythia
  • dogwood
  • hawthorne
  • magnolia
  • quince
  • plum

After at least 6 weeks of cold weather, simply cut a handful of branches that have plump buds using clean sharp garden shears at a natural joint (close to the base of the trunk or where it intersects with another branch). Ensure the branches aren’t essential to the form of your tree or shrub.

Next, bring the spring branches indoors. Allow them to warm up naturally, then re-cut the bases at a sharp angle under water.

Tap the bottoms with a heavy object to spread open the wood to absorb more water.

Finally, arrange in a narrow jar, vase or bottle half-filled with clean water and a few drops of alcohol to prevent bacteria growth.

How to Force Branches to Bloom Indoors

Caring for Spring Branches

Place the branches out of direct sunlight (but still bright area) and you will likely start seeing blooms in as little as a week. It will take a bit longer if you cut them earlier in the season. I prefer to do it a month or so before it would naturally occur.

Every few days, it’s also a good idea to recut the bottoms, tamp and place in fresh water (basically repeating the original steps).

Cooler temperatures will likely keep your forced branches looking their best for longer. Our mantel and table don’t get too much heat from direct sun, so that’s where I placed them.

How to Force Branches to Bloom Indoors

Those of you who are fortunate enough to live in warmer climates are probably already seeing blooms outside. We’re still a month or so away depending on the weather, so it’s nice to get a little preview of what’s to come. Can’t wait!

Have any other tips for forcing flowering branches to bloom indoors?

Check out these beautiful spring flower ideas too, including this bucket of tulips from Vibeke Design. So fresh looking, right?!

Spring Tulips in Vintage Bucket

Be sure to pin this spring branch project for later!

How to Force Flowering Branches to Bloom Indoors

It’s a beautiful season, isn’t it?

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Thanks for stopping by,

Shauna at Satori Design for Living Blog - Home Decor, DIY, Vintage Finds, Recipes


  1. Saw your link at Weekend Retreat and what a pretty idea!! I’ll have to try this spring, pinning to remember :)

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