Make Your Cut Flowers Last Longer in a Vase

When I was a senior in high school, I signed up for a “Floristry” class. Most people thought I said “Forestry” and assumed that I wanted to grow up to be a Forest Ranger!  I heard all kinds of comments like “Oh you’ll make such a great Forest Ranger!” Haha!  Anyhow, during the semester long FLORISTRY class, I learned nothing about “Smokey the Bear”, but I did learn a lot about flower types and floral design.  What good is a pretty floral arrangement if the flowers aren’t fresh and beautiful? Remember that whoever gave you the flowers probably spent a bundle of money because they wanted to show you how much they care about you. It would be sad for your lovely blooms to wither before their time!  I have found a few tips and tricks to help you enjoy your beautiful bouquet for as long as possible!

The very first thing you should do is to re-cut the stems on an angle using a sharp knife. This allows the stems to “drink’ in the water more easily. (It’s even better if you can cut them under water and put them directly into the vase.)

cut stem on angle

When you first receive your flowers, they may come wrapped in paper or plastic. Most likely it has been hours or even a couple of days since the flowers were first cut. The end of the stem can dry out and become “plugged.”  The stem will have  a hard time “slurping” up the water is desperately needs to keep the flower perky!

HERE are a few other suggestions for additives to put in the water in the vase. You can try any one of these suggestions (just not all at the same time!)

1.  Add 1/4 c. leftover Sprite or 7-Up to the vase of water. The sugar in the soft drink helps the blooms last longer.

2.  Add 2 T. sugar and 2 T. white vinegar to the water (change the water every other day and remember to add the sugar and vinegar each time)

3.  Crush an aspirin tablet and add it to the vase of water before adding the flowers.

4.  Add 3 drops of household bleach and 1 teaspoon sugar to 1 quart of water. (The bleach will help to keep the water clear too!)

5.  Drop a Penny into the bottom of the vase and add 1 teaspoon of sugar. (It helps to inhibit bacteria.)

These are just a few ideas for things you can add to the water, but probably just as important, the water should be completely changed every other day. (Be sure to add your additive each time you change the water.)

It also helps to keep the flowers in a cool location away from heat sources such as fireplaces, heat vents and direct sunlight.

Here’s a suggestion that is NEW to me:  Keep your vase of flowers away from your fresh fruit bowl! (The fresh fruit gives off Ethylene gas which can cause your flowers to wilt prematurely!)

Do you have any other secrets to making your flowers last longer?

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