Imagine coming home to a beautiful bouquet of flowers on your kitchen table, only to wonder how in the world you are going to be able to keep them alive! We’ve created a quick guide on keeping your flowers beautiful day after day.
Take your bouquet out of the plastic covering, very gently as to not rip off any petals or cause damage to the flowers. We all are guilty of throwing the little “plant food” packet away, thinking it does nothing, when in fact it will help preserve your flowers for a longer amount of time. “Flower food” as we all know it by, provides sugar to help keep the flowers from wilting, an acidic element to prevent bacteria growth, and an absorption enhancer to keep the stems “drinking” the fresh water. In a clean vase, mix about four cups of room temperature water with your plant food.
While flowers are sitting out of water the stems dry out, making cells inside the stems die off, causing the flower to have a hard time absorbing. This is why the end of the stems need to be trimmed. Trim the end of each flower with a sharp blade. (Pro Tip: Scissors are not usually recommended since it can crush the stem, making it extremely difficult for the flower to absorb water.) Each flower should be cut about 4” up and under cool running water diagonally. In a couple days, when additional water is needed, you may trim each tip of the stems to help keep your flowers fresh, and continuously absorbing water.
Keep fresh flowers away from bright light and heat sources. It is a common misconception that flowers should be placed in a sunny area. Fresh cut flowers are often cut and sold when they are at their “peak”, which is the opposite of potted plants. Sun and heat will cause them to mature further and wilt faster, thus keeping your flowers in a cool shady spot will help them stay fresh longer.
Although keeping fresh cut flowers on the kitchen counter is convenient, flowers should never be left next to ripening fruit. This little fact that might sound silly actually has very good reasoning to it. Ripening fruit gives off an odorless gas which is completely harmless to humans but pretty toxic to plants. This odorless gas is known as ethylene, and causes the flowers to lose petals for the start of pollination, the way Mother Nature would have worked.
Always check your flower arrangement daily, do a water check and check for dead flowers. Complete water changes are not always necessary, but if needed remember warm water and always replenish with fresh plant food. If a complete water change is not necessary, add warm water to make sure stems are completely submerged. Remove dead foliage, if there are any wilted or dead leaves, or wilted flowers it is best practice to carefully remove these.