11 Tips to Make Cut Flowers Last Longer

How often have you gone to the grocery store, picked out a beautiful bouquet of flowers, and then watched them wilt within a couple of days? The answer is probably too many times to count!

We've compiled a list of 11 tips to make your fresh-cut flowers last longer. With just a little extra care, you can enjoy those fresh blooms for days (or even weeks!). So next time you're at the florist, pick up a bunch of flowers and try these tips:

1. Water as Soon as Possible

Before bringing your beautiful flowers home, wrap the stem with a moistened paper towel to protect the "cut" end and prevent the stem from drying out. Once you're home, trim an inch or two off the bottom of the stems and immediately put your flowers in a clean vase with fresh water. Change the water every few days to keep them looking their best.

Cutting the stem at a 45-degree angle will increase the surface area to help the flowers absorb water more efficiently. The sooner you can get your bouquet hydrated, the better, since the entire process is quite shocking to the flowers.

2. Keep the Stems Clean

If you want to extend flower life, keep the stems clean. Depending on the type of flower, you may need to use a sterilized knife (X-Acto knives and razors work well), or shear to remove any thorns or leaves below the water line in the vase. These leaves can rot and contaminate the clean water, causing the flowers to wilt more quickly.

3. Add Sugar and Vinegar

Believe it or not, you can actually use sugar to extend the life of flowers. Adding around three tablespoons of brown or granulated sugar to the vase water can help flowers stay fresh for up to two weeks.

Add two tablespoons of white vinegar per quart of warm water to the mix. The sugar gives food to the plants, and the vinegar will prevent bacterial growth.

4. Add a Bit of Bleach

While it might seem strange to add to flowers, you might want to do it for several reasons. For one, it could prevent your flowers from dying prematurely. And while we don't recommend doing this every day, you can use it once a week to prolong flower life.

The best way to do this is to add a teaspoon of bleach to your watering can. This will kill off any harmful bacteria in your water, on the flower stems, and even in your glass vase. If you're worried about the smell, a little citrus oil or essential oils will cover up the scent.

You'll find that the effect isn't immediate - it takes a little while for the chlorine to work its magic. But over a month, you'll see that your flowers look fresher and healthier.

5. Remove Dead Flowers

Removing dying flowers may seem like an act of mercy, but in reality, it can help your plants to thrive. When a flower starts to wilt, it not only looks terrible, but it also speeds up the decomposition process, releasing bacteria and other particles that can contaminate the water and shorten the lifespan of the other flowers. So be sure to cut off any wilted blooms as soon as you notice them. Not only will your arrangement look better for it, but your cut flowers will last longer too.

6. Use Vodka to Prolong Flower Life

Vodka is high in ethanol, which acts as a natural preservative. Adding a few drops to your vase water can help your flowers stay fresh and perky for up to a week. Just be sure to use plain (and cheap) vodka - no need to waste your good stuff on flowers!

7. A Dose of Aspirin, Please!

Aspirin relieves headaches and fever but can also make flowers last longer. A study found that flowers grown in water containing crushed aspirin had fewer problems with algae growth and were less likely to die during periods of stress. They suggest that aspirin works because it lowers the pH level of the solution, making it easier for the plant roots to absorb nutrients.

8. Keep Away From Direct Sunlight

Contrary to popular belief, most flowers don't like direct sunlight. They actually prefer a cooler temperature and some shade. The sun's rays cause the flowers to lose moisture, leading to wilting and premature death. By keeping them in a cool, shady spot, you'll find that they grow much larger and healthier.

If you're buying your grown flowers, look for those kept in a cool, shaded place. Also, avoid placing them near air conditioners and heaters since they'll dry out the blooms quickly.

9. Spritz the Petals With Water or Hair Spray

One of the simplest and most effective ways to keep cut flowers looking fresh is to spritz them with water or hair spray. Just as it preserves your hairstyles, a spritz of hairspray can keep your cut flowers fresh. This helps to keep the petals from drying out and wilting. In addition, it can also help to prevent the flowers from getting dusty or faded. Stand a foot away from your arrangement and give them a quick blast just on the underside of the leaves and petals. You'll see how much better they look.

10. Store Flowers in the Refrigerator Overnight

Most florists keep flowers in a cool room where the air temperature is between 34 and 36°F, and the humidity is between 90 and 95%. Flowers are susceptible to temperature changes, so keeping them chilled overnight helps to keep flowers fresh.

Based on that, some believe keeping your flowers in the fridge will make them bloom longer. Simply place your flowers inside the vase into your fridge before bed each night, and let them chill out overnight. Just make sure to remove them from the fridge in the morning so they can warm up gradually to room temperature. Your flowers will thank you!.

11. Feed Your Flowers

Like any living creature, flowers last longer if you feed them. Feeding will help your flowers grow faster and bloom more frequently. A packet of flower food contains essential nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, and zinc. You can use flower food in several ways. First, spray it on the leaves of your plant. Second, apply it to the base of each stem where the buds form. And finally, put some flower food inside your plant's vase.

Which Flowers Last Longer Without Water?

Depending on the species, some flowers can last from a few days to a few weeks without water. If you're looking for a flower that will last a little longer without water, there are a few options to choose from:

  1. Alstroemeria: Also known as Peruvian lilies, these vibrant blooms can last up to two weeks without water.
  2. Carnations: These classic flowers can last three weeks without water.
  3. Chrysanthemums: Available in a wide range of colors, chrysanthemums can last up to two weeks without water.
  4. Davids: A variety of orchids can last up to two weeks without water.
  5. Gladiolus: Tall and elegant, gladiolus flowers can last up to two weeks without water.

So, if you're looking for a long-lasting floral arrangement, these five types of flowers will do the trick! If you're not sure which type of flower to choose, ask your florist for advice. They'll be able to help you pick the perfect bloom for your needs.

More Home & Garden Tips

Battle of the Bugs: How to Get Rid of Carpet Beetles and Moths

Battle of the Bugs: Removing Carpet Beetles and Moths

Battle of the Bugs: How to Get Rid of Carpet Beetles and Moths
Need to quickly pack a closet? Use garbage bags.

Use Garbage Bags to Quickly Pack Your Closet

Need to quickly pack a closet? Use garbage bags.
Clean dust from your blinds with a microfiber cloth and tongs

Clean Blinds with Kitchen Tongs and a Towel

Clean dust from your blinds with a microfiber cloth and tongs
Place old silica packets in your toolbox to reduce the likelihood of rusted tools.

Place old silica packets in your toolbox to reduce the likelihood of rusted tools.

Place old silica packets in your toolbox to reduce the likelihood of rusted tools.
Hide your alarm panel with a canvas print

Hide your alarm panel with a canvas painting

Hide your alarm panel with a canvas print
Use a seam ripper to cut out hair tangled in your vacuum cleaner

Use a seam ripper to cut out hair tangled in your vacuum cleaner

Use a seam ripper to cut out hair tangled in your vacuum cleaner
Hang your photos on the wall in the perfect spot by using paper templates.

Hang Photos in the Perfect Spot With Paper Templates

Hang your photos on the wall in the perfect spot by using paper templates.
Drill holes in the bottom of the garbage can to prevent suction

Drill holes in the bottom of the garbage can to prevent suction

Drill holes in the bottom of the garbage can to prevent suction
Instead of a tarp, use a lawn or sport umbrella to collect and distribute leaves

Instead of a tarp, use a lawn or sport umbrella to collect and distribute leaves

Instead of a tarp, use a lawn or sport umbrella to collect and distribute leaves
Convert an old hose into a sprinkler by poking holes in it.

Convert an old hose into a sprinkler by poking holes in it.

Convert an old hose into a sprinkler by poking holes in it.
No more tips found. Maybe you have one to share?
Share a tip

Recently Viewed Tips