Do you grow the most beautiful flowers as part of the landscape and think, “Wouldn’t these look beautiful on the breakfast table?” And from the time you bring them inside the clock starts ticking because you know this simple farmhouse aesthetic is very short-lived. So how do you keep the flowers fresh for as long as possible? Let’s start with the way you cut the flowers, it makes a big difference. Use a shear or sharp knife and avoid smashing or tearing the stems. This interferes with the water uptake and can reduce the longevity of the flowers. Cut at an angle so the ends don’t sit flat on the bottom of the vase.
Steps to Take After Cutting the Flowers
Once you have cut the stems of your flowers, place them immediately into a clean container. Don’t be tempted to use a vase you just used without properly washing it, it may still contain bacteria that can multiply quickly and block the flow of water from the stems. Next, remove any foliage that lies below the water line. Decaying foliage shortens the lifespan of the flowers by contributing to the build-up of bacteria. Fill the clean vase with lukewarm water before placing the flowers in it.
At this point you can add either a flower preservative or this homemade recipe: 3 parts water to 1 part 7-up soda, plus a few drops of bleach. The bleach really helps to inhibit the growth of bacteria. A bit of sugar from time to time will help keep flowers smelling wonderful too. (Source: Huffington Post.)
Now since we’re talking about longevity, and as fabulous as a vase full of cut flowers looks in a bright sunny window, you probably should keep the flowers in a cool spot in your house and not expose them to direct sunlight. Also avoid placing the vase near hot drafts and heat from electrical lights or appliances as well. You may even want to consider placing your fresh flowers in the refrigerator overnight to extend their lifespan. Warm air and direct sunlight dries them out and speeds up the process of decay.
Continue to Recut the Stems
Cutting the flowers an additional one-half to one inch allows for a greater intake of nutrients as well. Plan to recut the stems every three days so they can continue to take in fresh water. Additionally, make sure that you change the water and add more flower preservative or the bleach and 7-Up mixture at the same time.
You took the time to plant, grow and care for your favorite flowers. Go on, bring those lovelies inside if you want to. They will brighten up your home for sure.