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You Want Your Cut Flowers to Last Longer? Here's How to Do It. November 6, 2017 08:25

We spend $34.3 billion on fresh cut flowers each and every year in the USA.While they never last forever, it's a real shame to see blooms fade and wilt before their time. Especially if they don't last very long after delivery, it feels like a waste.

But there are some very clever ways of keeping them alive for longer after they've been picked.

Keep your fresh cut flowers blooming for longer with these brilliant pro tips and tricks.

1. Replenish the Water Frequently and Feed Your Plants

This is the golden rule. Before all else, your fresh cut flowers should have enough water at all times. You should replace and refill the vase often. You don't want to see your luxury flowers withering just a few days later.

Make sure your vase is deep enough for the length of stem your bouquet has. And lightly trim the ends of the stalks right before you put the flowers in the vase, to remove any dead ends.

Woody stalks, like roses, prefer to have a little more water, so you should fill the vase slightly deeper. Softer stems will be happy with a little less - say, half-full.

You should add plant food to help your flowers out. Often, your florist will supply a sachet of this when you buy your flowers. Make sure you follow the instructions carefully, as over- or under-feeding can have negative consequences.

2. Sugar and Vinegar

Adding a couple of tablespoons of sugar for every quart of water you're using will help to keep your fresh cut flowers for longer.

It's normally good to also add a dash of vinegar (apple cider vinegar works) too. Don't overdo it - a few tablespoons should work.

Your flowers will still need to be put in fresh water regularly. So remember to change the water, with new sugar and vinegar every few days.

3. Use Soda Instead

To recreate the sugar and acid solution as per step 2, you can add the remainder of your soda can to your flower vase.

Since soda contains plenty of sugar and acid, it has a very similar effect to the sugar/vinegar solution. Use a clear soda so it doesn't stain the inside of your flower vase.

This method will also help to keep your teeth healthy, as you'll drink a little less soda!

4. Add a Dash of Vodka!

Did you know that fresh cut flowers love a bit of a tipple?

Splash a dash of vodka (and a few spoons of sugar) into their pot, and they'll be very happy indeed.

It sounds weird, we know. But you'll be delighted with the results - if you haven't already earmarked that vodka for cocktails later on.

5. Keep Any Fruit at a Safe Distance

After flowers are cut, they can begin to overproduce the growth hormone ethylene. This is what leads to them drooping, which you can combat with some of the methods above.

The hormone is also emitted to other flowers and fruits. Which can lead to a spread of rotting fruit if they're too close to the fruit bowl.

And likewise, as many fruit and vegetables ripen, they emit ethylene. Which will lead to drooping flowers. So it's best to keep them well apart from each other, as a rule.

6. Hairspray

As you'll already know, hairspray helps to mold and hold hair to shape and keep it supported. It has a similar effect on flowers.

Hairspray gives flower stems and petals much more support, so they'll look great for longer.

This is actually on old photography trick. Photographers regularly use hair (and other) sprays to make the thing in their images look better. Food, flowers, and people are all regularly subject to the treatment!

7. Consider Semi-Dried Flowers

We're talking about fresh cut flowers here, but do you require decorative flowers that'll last for much longer?

Surprisingly, the festive period around Christmas and Hannukah makes up the largest percentage of all flower sales during holidays. But sadly, most blooms struggle in the cold.

So instead of looking for fresh cut flowers during the winter, why not try semi-dried flowers? They barely need to be looked after, and they can last for months. Perfect to see you through until February.

8. Let the Light in

Choose a place to put your flowers that gets plenty of natural light. Plants need light and nutrients in order to photosynthesize and make food.

Without light, your fresh cut flowers will quickly wither and fall apart. So don't draw the curtains on them or put them in a dingy corner.

Choose a place where they'll look great and get plenty of sunshine, like a windowsill which faces south.

But wherever you put them, make sure it's warm enough for them. This is particularly important if it's winter. Or if they're an exotic species which is used to warmer climes.

9. Keep Nature and Technology Separate

You might be tempted to put those beautiful roses right beside your TV, so they're the centerpiece of the room. Don't!

Any technology like computers, televisions, or kitchen appliances give off heat. This will quickly dehydrate your flowers, leading to wilting and death.

Make sure there's a really good airflow around your fresh cut flowers. This will also help them to last longer. This is another good reason, along with light exposure, to choose a window spot.

Looking for Fresh Cut Flowers in or Around LA?

SoCal Petals is your one-stop shop for all your floral needs in LA.

We create bouquets and arrangements that will stun your friends and amaze your family. And we are equally at home creating more somber arrangements for more serious events.

If you're after flowers that won't wilt, we sell a range of potted plants and offer a convenient delivery service too. Plus gifts, cards, and balloons!

So whether it's a wedding, baby shower, an anniversary or any other occasion - SoCal Petals has all you need. Call us today to discuss a customized order, or browse our website to see ready-made arrangements.