Caring for Cut Flowers

Cut Flower Care

About Cut Flower Care

As a flower gardener, you’re frequently bringing fresh-cut flowers indoors for floral arrangements to brighten up your indoor world. Or, you cut them to give as a gift to brighten up someone else’s life. From the moment you snip the flower off of the plant, your focus is upon caring for cut flowers to make them last forever.. or at least as long as possible. 

Conversely, you may be the recipient of a cut flower bouquet. Whatever the event or occasion, you just keep those beautiful flowers fresh as a constant reminder of the friendship and love those flowers represent. Use the “Cut Flower Tips and Instruction” below, to help preserve your flowers for as long as possible.

Cut Flower Care Tips and Instructions

  • When cutting flowers from your garden., take a bucket of ice-cold water out to your flower garden. Using a sharp knife, cut the flowers you want and immediately emerge them in the ice water.

  • Remove any leaves that will be underwater in the vase.

  • With the end of the flower stem under water, cut about an inch off the stem with a sharp knife. Cut at an angle. This will open the veins in the stem to allow more water to pass through.

  • Fill the vase about 3/4 to the top with fresh, room temperature to slightly warm water.

  • Add floral preservative to the water, as indicated on the package. It comes with most floral arrangements intended for vases.

  • Arrange your cut flowers as you prefer. Then leave them in a cool, dark room for a couple of hours to allow them to settle into their new home.

  • Always display your floral arrangement in a cool area.

  • Keep them out of direct sunlight.

  • Keep the water fresh. Change the water daily.

  • In the evening when you go to bed, place the flowers in a refrigerator if possible. Otherwise, find the coolest place in your home, perhaps the garage. But, do not leave them in any area which could reach the low thirties of freezing temperatures.

Did you know? Flowers do not like Ethylene gas? Sources of Ethylene gas include ripening fruits and vegetables, cigarette smoke, and car exhaust.

How to Straighten a Flower Head

After a few days in a vase, your flower heads may begin to droop.  It is caused when air bubbles in the stem block the passage of water. Often it can easily be re-straightened. It works well with roses and some other flowers.

Here is how:

  • Fill your sink with water.

  • Hold the stem under water and cut about an inch off the end at a slant.

  • Lay the flower flat in the water and gently re-straighten the head.

  • Keep the end of the stem underwater.

  • Leave the flower in the water for 30-45 minutes and it should harden in a straight position.

  • Place the flower back into the vase.

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