A Guide to Keeping Flowers Fresh

How To Make Flowers Last Longer

It’s always exciting when you get a fresh bouquet in your hands. Maybe you received a flower delivery as a gift or you simply felt like treating yourself. Whatever the case may be, few things in the world beat the look and smell of fresh flowers. 

If you’ve gotten your hands on a bouquet you love, you may be wondering how to keep those flowers fresh. In this article, we’ll share a few plant care tips and tricks that can help you extend the life of your flowers. 

Prepare Your Flowers for the Vase 

Have you recently recieved some gorgeous Mother’s Day flowers that you want to keep around for a while? To make your bouquet last as long as possible, you’ll have to place it in a vase. If you let them sit out in the open, they’re sure to dry up in no time. But keeping your flowers in a vase will ensure that they stay properly hydrated. Before placing your fresh flowers in a vase, though, there are a few simple steps you must take. To keep flowers fresh in a vase: 

Cut Stems 

When a vendor cuts the flower at the stem to add it to a bouquet or flower arrangement, the stem immediately begins to heal itself. The process is similar to when we experience a cut or wound and a scab begins to form. That’s to say that the area where the stem has been cut begins to harden and seal off to prevent infections and dryness. 

Thus, if you place a bouquet directly into a vase, the flowers won’t be able to absorb the water and nutrients as well as if they were freshly cut. This means that you have to take a pair of garden shears and cut the stems right before placing the flowers in the vase so that they’re better able to absorb the water. Ideally, you should cut the stems at an angle so that they don’t end up standing flat on the bottom of the vase. 

Don’t just stop after the initial cut—try to re-trim the stems every few days to maximize water uptake and extend the life of your flowers.  

Prune Extra Leaves

Take your garden shears and prune any leaves on your flowers that would drop below the waterline of the vase. If you recently received a bouquet of anniversary flowers that included roses, you can remove the guard petals to allow the flower to fully bloom. 

Pruning can help prevent harmful bacteria from forming and negatively impacting your flowers. Continue to check your flowers every day for dead, dying, or wilting leaves and petals, and prune these as needed. 

How to Prune Flowers with Shears

Pick the Right Vase

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that every vase is made equal. The type of vase you get depends on the type of flowers you’re putting into it. Heavier flowers should be cut short and placed in a low vase where they’ll have room to bloom. Lighter flowers, on the other hand, should be placed in a taller vase. In either case, make sure that your flowers are given ample space in the vase they’re in, and not crammed together. 

Water Wisely

After you’ve cut your flowers’ stems, pruned their extra leaves, and picked out a clean, appropriately-sized vase, you’ll have to fill that vase with water. Flowers need plenty of water to thrive—if they go without it for too long, they’ll shrivel up and die. 

Fill your vase with room temperature water and, if you want to give your flowers an extra little boost, consider adding in some flower food. Thoroughly mix flower food with the water and make sure it dissolves completely before you add the flowers. Every two to three days, give the vase a good cleaning, switch out the water, and mix in more flower food if you so desire. 

Avoid Direct Sunlight, Heat, Drafts, and Fruit

While you may think your flowers need a lot of sunlight to stay healthy, this isn’t really true. Once flowers have been cut from their roots and placed in a vase, it’s better to keep them away from open windows and out of direct sunlight. 

Keep your flowers in a cool room, away from furnaces, fans, and air conditioning vents, to prevent them from quickly drying out. Another tip: Keep your flowers away from fresh fruit. When fruits ripen, they let out small amounts of ethylene gas that can have a negative impact on your flowers. 

Interesting Ways to Make Flowers Last Longer 

Looking for unique ways to keep your flowers fresh longer? Check out the following methods for keeping your flowers looking fresh and crisp: 

  • Refrigerate your flowers: Keeping your flowers in cool temperatures helps to preserve them and prevent wilting. Place your bouquet in the fridge each night before bed and you’ll end up with flowers that stay looking fresh for longer. 
  • Add a little soda: While soda may not be the healthiest choice for us humans, it has a different effect on flowers. When you pour about ¼ cup of soda into a full vase, the sugar will help the longevity of your flowers. 
  • Break out the vodka: Vodka doesn’t seem like it’d help flowers stay healthy—but, miraculously, it does. Add a couple of drops of vodka to a vase full of fresh flowers to inhibit ethylene production and minimize the wilting of your bouquet.  

While it’s true that you can’t make fresh flowers last forever, there are certain steps you can take to increase their lifespan—like following this guide on how to keep flowers fresh. Can’t stand the thought of throwing away your beautiful bouquet? Now you don’t have to. Order same-day flower delivery from FTD today to try out one or all of these tips on how to keep cut flowers fresh. See for yourself how long you can make your bouquet last!