So you received some beautiful flowers from a special someone this Valentine’s Day? Lucky you! They are probably looking gorgeous on your desk or dining room table right now. But have you thought about how long those flowers will last? Here are a couple of tips to help lengthen the life of your blooming beauties.
1. Change the water frequently
Bacteria starts to build up in the vase water over time. The water in your vase will start to look cloudy and your stems will feel slimy as a result and the vase life of your flowers will be much shorter. Change the water every few days to prevent this. Also be sure no foliage is down in the water, which will also encourage bacterial growth.
2. Add flower preservative
When you are changing that water, be sure that you’re adding back in floral preservative with it. Your florist can provide you with a small packet of flower food you can dissolve in the water. A floral preservative has acidifier, bactericide, and sugars to prevent bacterial growth and provide food to the flowers. Homemade preservatives are great to use as long as they fit at least one of those bills. A penny or aspirin, for example, are common home preservatives that many try but would contain none or very little of those ingredients. Adding sugar, bleach or citrus soda in small concentrations would be a better choice. But of course, always opt for the flower food packet if available.
3. Recut stems
When you’re replacing the water and floral preservative, go ahead and make a fresh cut to the ends of your stems. This will encourage fresh water uptake in the stems.
4. Keep away from direct sunlight
Place your vase of flowers in an area away from direct sunlight. Sunlight will encourage your blooms to open faster, reducing their vase life.
5. Keep away from drafts
Extreme changes in temperatures like cold drafts from open doors or windows will also shorten the vase life of your flowers. Same goes for heating vents. Don’t place your vase in the direct flow of a heating vent. A cool area out of direct sunlight is great for cut flowers.
If these tips are followed, the vase life of your flowers will be greatly improved!