The Secret to Long-Lasting Cut Flowers

The Secret to Long-Lasting Cut Flowers

Beautiful flower arrangements can work wonders. They not only beautify and brighten up space in no time, but they can also make us feel good about ourselves in a snap. It’s no surprise that – whether it’s a bouquet of heart-melting peonies from a new romance, or a bunch of hydrangeas we bought ourselves to satisfy our shabby chic pleasures – we want them to stay as fresh as the day we got them forever, just the same.

Making cut flowers last forever is one tall order, but extending their lifespan to one or two weeks (instead of just three days) does sound like a fair deal, right? 

Follow these easy tips and tricks.

1. Prep your vase.

Wash it thoroughly with soap and water. Some florists even suggest using bleach to ensure you get rid of all the grime and the bad bugs left from previous arrangements

2. Use flower food.

Remember, the little packet of floral preservatives from your florist? Basically containing fructose as its main ingredient, this solution acts as the main source of food for the plants, thwarting the potential growth of harmful bacteria and fungi, and effectively enabling the plants to suck in more nutrition by lowering the pH of the water.

Going green? Here’s an all-natural alternative you can do by yourself. Add two tablespoons of lemon juice, one tablespoon sugar, and a quarter tablespoon of bleach in a quart of warm water. Similarly, if you don’t have a real lemon, lemon-lime sodas can also do the job, but not the diet variants, as they don’t have sufficient sugar but excessive acid, which is not advisable for cut flowers.

3. Take note of the temperature.

For the water, here’s a rule of thumb: plain, lukewarm water is generally good for almost all flowers, but go for the cold if it’s a bulb flower, such as tulips, daffodils, calla lilies, and hyacinths. Don’t put your flowers anywhere near windows that get too much sun, heaters, fireplaces, stoves, or television sets. Moving them to the coolest place in your home at night is also effective.

4. Maintenance is the secret.

Always change the water and wash your vase as much as possible daily, but it’s a busy week, every two days will do. Of course, don’t forget to add in the flower food again. A little mist of water on the petals and leaves using a spray bottle every now and then won’t hurt as well. Pluck out wilted leaves or petals whenever you see one and give stems a fresh angled cut whenever possible.

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