If you've ever purchased or received a floral arrangement from a flower shop, such as Marine Florists, you know that it takes a bit of thought to keep the flowers looking fresh. To make a floral arrangement last a relatively long time, you need to exercise a bit of caution and take a few simple measures. Your local florist can help you understand the basics, so don't be afraid to ask for advice. In the meanwhile, here are tips to preserve the natural beauty of the flowers and make it last a while:
1. Avoid Extreme Temperatures
A sudden fluctuation in temperature can wreak havoc on most any floral arrangement. To prevent the flowers from looking droopy or from wilting before its time, keep it in a controlled environment. Basically, this means placing the floral arrangement away from a drafty area.
Also, avoid placing the flowers in direct sunlight or too close to a heating element, such as a heating vent, radiator, or stove. Windowsills are also not a good spot, as your flowers may overheat from sun exposure. Excess humidity is also not very good for the flowers, nor is excessively dry air. All of the above may contribute to drying out the flowers. Play it safe and keep the flowers looking fresh longer by keeping the arrangement in a cool (but not drafty) spot. Typically, this means anywhere from 65-72 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Do Not Expose Your Floral Arrangement to Chemicals
Aerosol sprays, air fresheners, and cleaners should not be sprayed in the vicinity of your flowers. Cigarette smoke should also be avoided. Exposure to ethylene gas will harm the flowers and may cause them to wilt and die. Also, it's a good idea not to place your floral arrangement in the kitchen where it will be exposed to cooking smoke and grease.
3. Replenish Your Vase With Water As Needed
Water provides the hydration all flowers need to survive. Check frequently to be sure the stems and foliage are submerged. Generally speaking, a fresh change of water should suffice. However, if you notice the water is evaporating quickly, replenish it as needed. Never leave dirty, soiled, or cloudy water in the holding container or vase. Before changing the water, check for rotted leaves, flower petals, or stems. These should be removed at once. Before placing your flowers in a vase, clean the vase thoroughly to be sure no dirt or dust particles are left.
Your florist may have provided a floral nourishment solution. Read the directions and mix in the appropriate amount with the fresh, clean water. Do this every time you change the water. If you run out of solution or you do not have any type of flower food, use a plain aspirin in the water. Some florists tout that aspirin will extend the life of the foliage.
4. Provide Adequate Drainage
If you plan on re-potting your floral arrangement, be sure the pot or pots you use have adequate drainage holes. This is important, as it allows the excess water to drain away from the pot. Plastic or resin are good materials for plant pots, as these materials will not absorb the water which may lead to dehydration of the flowers. When re-potting your flowers, use a potting soil that is rich in nutrients. You might also want to add a bit of garden mulch, as this will help retain the moisture.
5. Trim the Stems of Your Flowers Daily
This is a simple step and it may extend the life of your floral arrangement. Simply use a small knife or a special tool called a floral cutter to gently cut a little less than one inch from the bottom of the stem. Cut the stem at an angle. Do not leave any loose stems or clippings in the vase, as this may lead to the growth of bacteria in the water. Also, pinch off any wilted leaves or flower petals you notice.