How to Make Cut Flowers Last Longer
Keeping fresh flowers alive and healthy is no easy feat. Crisp flowers bring joy to any space, but when they start to wither and wilt, they can have the opposite effect. Learning how to take proper care of your flowers is essential in order to stop that dreaded drooping and slumping. Use these easy tips with your fresh blooms to get more life out of them.
Cut carefully but frequently
When it comes to trimming the ends of your flower or rose stems, you need to keep a few things in mind…
First up, the tool you use. Ideally, you should use garden shears – these will be nice and sharp and easily able to get through the stem without causing any injuries to self or damage to the flower. Kitchen scissors will work OK, but avoid using a knife if possible.
Next, you need to consider how much you are cutting off. If there is no visible grime around the bottom of stems, you should cut 2cm. Do this on a slight angle so that the stems don’t rest flat on the bottom of the glass and can take up more water.
Finally, the frequency of cutting your stems. This may depend on how long the stems were to begin with, and the type of flower you are dealing with. Typically, you should be doing this every 2-3 days, and clean the stem while you are at it. If you’re unsure whether your stems need to be trimmed more often, feel free to give us a ring or email.
Reduce bacteria in the vase
Reducing the bacteria in your vase will also help enhance the flower life. This can be done in many ways, so we’re just going to list a few of our favourites…
Remove any stem foliage that will sit below the water in your vase. This is a tip that many people don’t know about but it is a huge help in avoiding bacterial growth. Wet foliage is a perfect environment for fungi and bacteria to thrive, so removing these leaves will reduce the chances of this happening.
You should also clean vases before use with a good bleach or disinfectant solution. If you are using bleach, mix one part bleach to 10 parts water, then pour this into your vase. Leave it for a few hours so that it really tackles any bacteria already in the vase. You can then use a brush to scrub the inside of the vase before rinsing out and thoroughly drying.
Sugar & Vinegar. This homemade combination will help enhance flower growth while also fighting any bacteria in the vase. The sugar will nourish the plants, and the vinegar will stop bacteria thriving. We recommend mixing 3 tablespoons of sugar, plus 2 tablespoons of vinegar into a litre of warm water. This concoction can then be poured into the vase when replenishing the water.
Consider the placement of flowers
The level of light that your flowers needs will depend on the variation of blooms included in your bouquet. Generally speaking, cut flowers will last longer when in cooler conditions. This may mean placing them in a spot that gets a generous amount of light, but not direct sunlight. It goes without saying that flowers should not be sat next to heaters or radiators.
Ethelyne gas is also a contributing factor to flowers wilting. This is known to be a silent (flower) killer as people often don’t know it’s there. It usually comes from over-ripe or spoiled fruit and vegetables. To reduce the impact of ethylene gas on your fresh bouquet of flowers, remove any over-ripe fruit and vegetables from the area that your flowers are located.
5 Quick Tips:
- Protea’s are very thirsty flowers. If your vase is not the see through kind, check every few days to see how much water they have.
- Daffodils should not be put in a vase with other flowers. They secrete a substance that kills other flowers when in the same vase.
- Tulips grow a few inches after they are cut and will continue to grow toward the closest light source.
- Lillie’s should have pollen removed. If the pollen gets on the flower petals, it can eat away at these delicate flower parts, leading to a shorter life for your blooms.
- Roses prefer warm water. They are summer flowers, so are familiar with luke-warm water.