How to keep flowers fresh for longer – it’s a question I’m asked a lot by customers browsing in the shop.
If you’re after longevity it’s always best to ask a florist which flowers last the longest. We can then recommend flowers such as alstroemerias, chrysanthemums, carnations, lilies and orchids.
Generally, soft stemmed seasonal flowers like tulips for example don’t tend to be longer lasting – but boy it’s worth enjoying them for their short season! Nothing like a vase of sweet peas, garden roses and hydrangea in the summertime. But there are some tips you can use to help these little beauties last a little longer in a vase.
5 steps to keeping cut flowers fresh for longer
- Choose a clean, clear glass vase. The majority of flowers are happiest when daylight can get to the stems. Wash the vase thoroughly with tap water before use – this’ll ensure that no bacteria is present when the flowers are popped in.
- Always keep the water clean. We recommend water being changed every couple of days. Fresh cold water is best. There are many old wives tales about how to make your flowers last longer by adding special ingredients (we’ve heard them all ie using a penny, vodka, aspirin, lemonade) but we believe that simple fresh cold water works best. Always ensure that over half of the height of the stems are in water (a minimum of 4 inches). Flowers do drink up the water so keep topped up if you notice the water level has lowered.
- Cut the stems. Remove all foliage from the stems which should be clean with no thorns. Leaves in the water will lead to a build-up of bacteria and cause all of the flowers to die more quickly. When cutting the stems it’s best to cut with a sharp pair of secateurs and at an angle of 45 degrees, this gives a bigger surface area for the flowers to take up water. Over time the stems create a seal which stops the water rising up them – so definitely cut those stems to awaken them!
- Place in a suitable location. As tempting as it may be to have your flowers near a window for everyone to see, we don’t recommend it. Always keep your lovely vase of flowers away from direct sunlight and in a cool space. Sunlight and warmth will cause the florals to wilt sooner.
- Check your flowers regularly. Over time you’ll notice that some flowers fade sooner than others. Always remove these ones as soon as you can. Old blooms/stems release an odourless gas causing the rest of your bouquet to die, so as soon as you spot one, get it out quickly.
Please do try these tips the next time that you order flowers and let us know how you get on?