How to Grow Daffodils Indoors


Daffodil bulbs show up at garden centers in early fall; that's the time of year to plant them so they bloom the following spring. You can force daffodils to bloom indoors during winter by potting them up and simulating their winter chill. You'll have daffodils blooming indoors while snow is still on the ground, long before their outdoor counterparts bloom.

Step 1

Prepare the containers. Use shallow pots or bulb pots. Bulb pots are just like regular indoor planting pots except they're a little shorter. They can be made of either plastic or clay. Cover the drain hole with a piece of broken clay pot or a rock. Fill the pot 2/3 full with an all purpose potting soil. It is not necessary to add fertilizer; daffodils forced indoors don't need it.

Step 2

Plant the bulbs. Set the daffodil bulbs on top of the soil with their pointed end up. Place the bulbs close together but not touching so that you can barely see any of the soil. Fill in around the bulbs with soil. Tap the bottom of the pot on a hard surface to settle the potting soil. Add enough soil so that the top 1/3 of the bulbs are above the soil line.

Step 3

Water the pot of bulbs until it drains out of the bottom of the pot.

Step 4

Chill the bulbs. In order to bloom, the daffodils need to be exposed to a period of nearly freezing temperatures. The ideal temperature to chill daffodils is between 33 and 45 F. Some ways to do this are to put the pot of bulbs in the bottom of a refrigerator. If you live in an area with semi-mild winters, the daffodils can be chilled in a cold frame, buried under 1 to 2 feet of leaves. In northern areas with constant freezing temperatures, an unheated hall closet or basement may be cool enough to provide the bulbs with the chill they need. If you're lucky enough to have a root cellar, this is an ideal place to chill your daffodil bulbs for indoor bloom.

Step 5

Expose the daffodil bulbs to the near freezing temperatures for 12 to 16 weeks. They will grow roots and prepare to send up a flower stalk.

Step 6

Bring the bulbs into colder than average room temperatures of 60 to 65 F after 12 to 16 weeks at near freezing temperatures. Place them in bright indirect light away from direct sunlight.; an east facing window is ideal. This will force the bulbs to sprout and develop the flower buds. Let them grow under these conditions for about two weeks until the flower buds are fully formed but not open. Water as needed to keep the soil moist, but not wet.

Step 7

Move the pot to normal room temperatures (68 to 75 F) and bright indirect light but not direct sunlight. Once you move the bulbs to normal room temperatures, the flowers will open in just a few days.

Things You'll Need

  • Shallow plant pot or bulb pot
  • Potting soil
  • Daffodil bulbs


  • Grow daffodils indoors.
Keywords: how to grow daffodils indoors, grow daffodils indoors, force daffodils indoors

About this Author

Sharon Sweeny has a college degree in general studies and worked as an administrative and legal assistant for 20 years before becoming a professional writer in 2008. She specializes in writing about home improvement, self-sufficient lifestyles and gardening.