Tip # 1. After the end of the stem is cut, place it directly into the water. It only takes a minute for the stem to begin to dry and seal up.
Tip # 2. Pull or trim all leaves and thorns that will be below the water level in the container. Allowing such materials to decompose in water will allow harmful bacteria to shorten the life of the flowers.
Tip # 3. In conditioning flowers, the water temperature should be comfortably warm. Submerge your hand to test the water. Cold water is not as readily absorbed by the flower. Hot water will penetrate the stem, but will almost shock the flower.
Tip # 4. Once flowers are placed in water, they begin to decompose or break down by releasing gases and forming bacteria. The cleaner the stems and the less debris in the water, the less decomposition occurs, and the longer the flowers will last.
Tip # 5. All the same kind of flower in a vase or container will last longer than a mix of different types. Certain flowers have a different makeup and decompose by different means. This mixed reaction can shorten the life of all the flowers. The same kind of flower will break down by the same reaction, Actually, a single flower in a vase will last longer than several of the same kind.
Tip # 6. Cloudy or discolored water is an indication of decomposition and bacterial growth. Change the water in the container at least every couple of days, using new, warm water. This will open the stems to allow water to flow to the flower
Tip # 7. Fresh, clean water is best for the vase life of flowers. Some commercial floral foods can lengthen the vase life as well, but be very careful in measuring the amount. Using too much can actually be harmful. Homemade versions or substitutions, such as lemon lime soda, are not a good idea, because sugar promotes bacterial growth in the water.
Tip # 8. Stems will develop a film and become discolored from stagnating in the water; this blocks water flow to the flower. Re-cut the stems each time the water is changed to allow water to penetrate the stem.
Tip # 9. Many flowers will open in the light. This does not mean they are not fresh. It is the nature of that type of flower, which will close again in the dark. Temperature will also cause the same effect.
Tip # 10. Warmer temperatures will cause the flower to open, and cooler temperatures will cause it to close.
Tip # 11. Keep flowers out of direct light. Flowers will last longer in a place of low to indirect light. Light creates heat and speeds up the life cycle of the flower. However, flowers with a green tinge owing to early cutting, or tightly budded flowers and branches, will need a strong light source to develop. Once the flowers show full color, put them in a place with less light so they will last.
Tip # 12. Most flowers are accustomed to the outdoors, so air circulation is important for their vase life. Keep them in a place with good airflow. Cigarette smoking is harmful to flowers.
Tip # 13. Many believe that placing flowers in the refrigerator at night helps them last longer. However, many foods may cause a negative reaction in the flowers from the gases they release in the breakdown process. Placing your flowers next to a window or in a cool room at night is a good idea.
Tip # 14. Pinching or trimming off spent blossoms and leaves encourages other blossoms to open and makes the flower last longer. The spent blossoms take some of the energy the flower has to stay alive. Trimming these away allows the flower to channel the energy to the healthy parts.
Tip # 15. Some flowers, such as carnations and dahlias, have separations or nodes along their stems. The stem is thicker and more fibrous at these parts. Cut the stem between the nodes to allow water to penetrate the stem.
Tip # 16. Branching or spray flowers will last longer if the stems are separated at their base. This allows for water to be directly absorbed by each blossom.
Tip # 17. Tall or heavy flowers, such as lilies and hybrid delphiniums, may bend or break before they are completely hydrated. Tie the tip of the flower and the middle part of the stem to a branch or stick loosely with twine to support the flower for proper hydration.
Tip # 18. Bent or cracked stems and flowers that bend owing to their heavy heads can be salvaged with floral wire. Insert the wire partway into the strong area above the bend or break, or under the flower head.
Tip # 19. If flowers wilt or droop prematurely, cutting them short and placing them in slightly warmer water should revive them. Both the cutting and water temperature help the blossom absorb water more quickly.
Tip # 20. Some flowers bend or droop because their flower heads become too heavy for their stems. The stems become waterlogged and stop conveying water to the blossom. A tiny prick just below the head of the flower will release air, thus increasing the water flow.
Tip # 21. Wilted flowers can also be revived by completely submerging them in cool water. Do this by filling a deep bucket or tub with cool water. Place the flowers lying down in the water and weigh them down with a weight of some kind, like a brick. Let the flowers stay submerged for a few hours.
Tip # 22. Some flowers bend or droop owing to light, temperature changes, or just because it is the nature of that flower. Gently roll the paper around the flowers, forming a cone shape. Secure the paper with twine or with staples so that the paper braces the flowers. Mist the flowers and paper to keep them damp. Place the cone of flowers in deep water for several hours. Unwrap the flowers and they will be upright again.
- Cut the stems
Cut the bottom of the stems diagonally under running water, using a sharp knife or scissors (Cut 1 to 2 inches)
Why? This increases the surface area of the stem underwater, and allows the stems to draw in water instead of air
- Remove lower foliage
Remove all the leaves that fall below the water line.
Why? These leaves breakdown and decay, which promotes bacterial growth, which can block the stem and stop the flowers taking up the water
- Mix flower food in luke warm water
Arrange your flowers in a vase with lukewarm water mixed with the first packet of floral food
Why? This will help the closed buds to start opening and help to prolong the life and beauty of your flowers. Water that is too hot or cold can be shocking to the flowers inhibiting their ability to drink water.
- Keep away from direct sunlight and heat
Place your flowers in a cool location away from direct sunlight, electrical appliances and drafts.
Why? Flowers are happiest when kept cool, temperature is key to the lifespan of flowers. Appliances such as televisions give off heat, causing flowers to dehydrate.
- Maintain your flowers
Top up the vase regularly with fresh water, re-cutting the stems when necessary. On the 3rd Day replace vase with fresh water adding the 2nd packet of flower food while removing any fading flowers.
Why? This helps to prolong the life and vibrancy of your flowers