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8 Tips to Extend the Beauty of Fresh Flowers

By: Stuart Delk | Floral Director
On: January 23, 2016

Taking a moment whenever possible to mark and appreciate beauty is an important part of mindful living. Flowers, with all the splendor of creation present in the most unpretentious bloom, are a perfect way to bring beauty into your everyday life. Cut flowers are living organisms. The better you care for them, the longer they will brighten your days. At DLM, we work hard to ensure the highest quality flowers are available for your enjoyment. Here are some simple steps to keep your bouquets pristine.

1. Start with fresh flowers. Look at the flowers, the foliage, and stems. If they don’t look fresh, they probably aren’t. Look for signs of bruising on the foliage. Creasing is a sign of rough handling and a good indication of bad quality.

2. Beware of extreme temperatures. When transporting flowers, this is key. Cut flowers left in a hot car are doomed. On the flip-side, sub-freezing temperatures, even for a short time, will ruin them. So care for your flowers accordingly and don’t leave them in your car to sweat it out or freeze.

3. Flowers need water. This isn’t negotiable. When transporting cut flowers, keep them in water if at all possible. Plus, if you take flowers to a friend at dinner, it may be another few hours before they even make it to the vase. Certain DLM bouquets come pre-wrapped in water bags. But any of our cut flowers can be wrapped with water bags upon request. Just ask! These water bags will keep your fresh-cut flowers hydrated temporarily; an important first step in longevity.

4. Fresh cut, fresh start. Always recut the stems before putting the flowers in a vase. The cleaner the cut, the better. It’s best to cut with a sharp knife but sharp flower snips are almost as good. Stems that are poorly cut and mashed don’t take up water. This will significantly shorten the life of your flowers. Also, remove any foliage that will be below the water.

5. Use a clean vase. This is easy to forget but is important. It’s best to clean vases between uses with a mild bleach solution.

6.Floral preservative is your friend. Always use the DLM supplied floral preservative. The preservative contains nutrients to feed the flowers and ingredients to inhibit the growth of stem-clogging bacteria. Don’t fall for old wives’ tales about adding sugar or a penny. Floral preservative is best.

7. Placement matters. Direct sun and drafts cause flowers to transpire (lose moisture) rapidly and shorten the life of your flowers. It’s best to place vases out of direct sun.

8. Be in for the long haul. After three days, change the vase water and re-cut the stems. This easy step can double or triple the life of your flowers.