Maximizing the life of your cut flowers involves proper care and simple techniques to keep them looking fresh for as long as possible. Cutting beautiful blooms from the garden and arranging them yourself can be a source of joy, while flowers can wilt soon after they are cut from the garden or delivered if you are not careful.
Consider the tactics below to help keep your flower in vases fabulous for longer – and the best part is that they are all easy to do.
Use a Clean Vase
To start, make sure you use a clean vase filled with lukewarm water. Do not submerge the leaves of your plants in water, as this can lead to bacterial growth.
Cut the Stems
After cutting your flowers from the garden or receiving a bouquet, cut off the bottom ends of each stem at a diagonal angle of about 45 degrees. This will open up vessels and allow for maximum water uptake.
Ensure the stems are long enough to reach the bottom of the vase so they are not above water. Recut the stems every few days so they will continue to take up water effectively.
Another obvious tip is to keep flowers that naturally last longer in the vase. Some of these include chrysanthemums, roses, and alstroemerias.
Flowers Need Food Too
Flower food is a must to extend the life of your cut flowers. If you are purchasing bouquets from florists or online retailers, they usually come with small packets of flower food.
You can also buy larger packages specifically for blooms cut from the garden. Feeding your cut flowers with optimal nutrients will ensure that they last longer. Pour the powder from packets into your vase, along with fresh water.
Put Them in the Right Place
Keep your cut flowers and bouquets away from direct sunlight and heat sources in the home. Meanwhile, ethylene gas from fruits can accelerate the wilting of flowers, so avoid putting them next to ripening fruits.
Hydration is obviously essential. After receiving your bouquets, put the stems of flowers in a container with water and cover with a plastic bag to keep them hydrated until they are ready to be arranged.
Once they are in a vase, use clean, room temperature water and replace daily. Remove stems that are starting to wilt so your bouquet can stay fresh longer. This also helps prevent bacteria growth that can clog the stems.
Apart from providing standard hydration, consider misting the petals and leaves of your flowers lightly with water for extra moisture. Avoid overdoing this however, as too much moisture can lead to mold and bacterial growth.
Some flower bouquets will even come with hydration tubes that are attached to the stems. These will provide water directly to your flowers and prolong their lifespan significantly.
Pruning Your Flowers
Trim away any dead or wilted leaves and petals to ensure your bouquet stays fresh. As you change the water, also look out for and remove any leaves below the water line.
If your flowers are starting to wilt, remove them from the bouquet to stop the spread of decay. This also stops the release of ethylene gas, and will allow the remaining flowers to last longer.
Keep Out of the Cold
Apart from direct sun exposure, cold drafts can also be detrimental to your bouquets, as they can make flowers wilt faster.
With so different varieties of flowers, some will naturally last longer than others, and these are usually more suitable for arranging in flower bouquets. By following the above simple tips, you can maximize the life of your cut flowers, and enjoy their natural beauty for much longer.