Jon Crispin's Notebook


Posted in Jon Crispin, Uncategorized by joncrispin on 12/12/2018


This year I bought several paperwhite bulbs for Cristine’s birthday in late October and they have just started blossoming.  When you pass by them the smell is amazing. /  On Sunday we went out and got a tree for the first time in years and Cris trimmed it that evening. / Here we have kind of a schmaltzy photo with a Santa in the background.  Who would have thought I would post anything about Christmas, but I must say, it feels quite nice to be getting into the spirit of the season.


Posted in biology, Flowers, Jon Crispin, Nature, Plants, Uncategorized by joncrispin on 10/02/2017


Just before Christmas I bought the last four paperwhite bulbs at Hadley Garden Center.  As they were the last ones, they looked a bit ratty.  Since we were gone most of January, Cris didn’t put them into the jar of rocks until just after we got home.  The first flowers came out today.  A full foot of snow outside but lovely to have these beauties in the house.

I spoke to my friend John Wilson in Stratford-upon-Avon late last week and he said the daffodils are already coming up over there.  I guess we’ll have to wait at least 6 more weeks before we see any here.

Have a great weekend, everyone.

Paperwhites, Again

Posted in Flowers, Nature, Plants, Weather by joncrispin on 16/02/2015

This batch is just starting to blossom.  Five bulbs for less than 5 bucks.  It is simply the easiest and cheapest way to momentarily escape the winter.  A glass bowl, some small stones, a few bulbs, a bit of water, et voila!

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Paperwhite Update #5

Posted in Flowers, Plants by joncrispin on 16/02/2014

This will be the last of paperwhite posts for a while as this batch of bulbs is nearing the end of their cycle.  They are finally looking a bit tired, and the living room is no longer smelling quite so pleasant.

You can just begin to see the flowers starting to lose their shape.  /  This has been a great batch of bulbs though, and we never had any drooping or sagging.  I have to run some errands later today, and I think I’ll pick up some new ones.

Paperwhite? update #4 / Suitcases

Posted in Flowers, Plants, Willard Suitcases by joncrispin on 06/02/2014

I was looking at the paperwhites today and, well…..something seemed a bit odd.  It took me a second to realize that, HEY, those aren’t paperwhites!  These daffodils snuck in somehow (hangin’ with their paperwhite friends and makin’ mischief; sure we’ll come along.  Sounds like fun).  Totally unexpected and somewhat of a shock.  I am so clueless about bulbs, but I now presume you can force just about anything indoors.  Does anyone know if you can do this with tulips as well?  Seeing these guys was a very pleasant surprise.

Welcome to all of you have been following the Kickstarter suitcase project.  It might seem confusing to see “non suitcase” posts here, but I like to mix things up a bit on this site.  Thanks to all of you backers.  Cheers.

Paperwhite Update #3 / Groundhog Day Edition

Posted in Flowers, Plants by joncrispin on 02/02/2014

The whole living room smells great.  This is the same set I used in the original post.  And still no evidence of “drooping”, although the flowers seem much too heavy for the stem supporting them.  Ain’t nature grand?

Paperwhite Update #2 / And They’re Off!

Posted in Family, Flowers, Plants by joncrispin on 29/01/2014

This is the tallest of the paperwhite stalks that I posted in Update #1.  At about 4.30 I looked at the bulbs, and they were almost completely dry and there were no flowers.  I added some water to the bowl, and at about 6.00 Cris noticed that two of the bulbs had started to open.  And they smell amazing.

Paperwhite Update #1

Posted in Flowers by joncrispin on 26/01/2014

A few of you have been asking for updates on the paperwhite situation, and I am happy to oblige.  This is the second of our two sets of bulbs and as you can see they are progressing nicely.  Cris says that they are sucking up more water than is usual; maybe a combination of it being really dry in the house, and this lot being a particularly thirsty variety.  I can remember some years where we only added water once a week or so. / I reckon we’ll start seeing (and smelling) flowers in the next few days.


Posted in Family, Flowers, Nature, Plants, Seasons by joncrispin on 17/01/2014

A few years ago my sister Karen gave us some paperwhite bulbs and told us how to get them to flower.  The process seemed to mysterious to me; put some dried up bulbs on some stones, add just enough water to cover the bottom of the bulbs and  in a short amount of time…voila, you have the most amazing smelling flowers in your house.  In winter!  So we do it every year now.  Give it a shot.  It is a great way to brighten up a household.

Paperwhites (Narcissus papyraceus)

Posted in Flowers, Plants by joncrispin on 10/01/2013

Hey Cris!  The paperwhites are blooming.  They smell great and are awaiting your return.

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