Tips for Storing Your Valentine’s Day Roses and Flower Arrangements
The lifespan of cut flowers in your home depends on a few factors.
A few days after Valentine’s Day, those who have received beautiful flower arrangements might notice that flowers that once looked fresh and vibrant on February 14 may look dry, dull or wilted.
How long cut flowers will last in your home depends on a few factors, according to Amy Enfield, Ph.D., horticulturist and gardening specialist with Scotts Miracle-Gro.
“Some flowers are genetically predisposed to last longer than others,” Enfield told AccuWeather. “[Other factors include] how long have they been cut before you receive them; how long were they kept at the florist or in a store and at what temperature were they kept; and what you did with them once you got them.
Cut zinnias, carnations, chrysanthemums and baby’s breath are known to last two to three weeks or more, while Alstroemeria can typically last up to two weeks once cut, according to Enfield.
“In general, if properly cared for, most cut flowers last up to 10 days,” Enfield said.
If you find your roses or other cut flowers are wilting too early for your liking, experts say there are several ways to extend the life of your bouquet.
Check the freshness of the flowers
If you’re buying the flowers yourself, make sure they’re fresh, recommends Enfield. Check to see if the flowers are still vibrant or if the color has started to fade.
“If you’re buying roses, gently squeeze the flower where the petals meet the stem,” Enfield suggested. “If it’s firm, it’s fresh, but if it’s soft, it’s old.”
Also look for cut stems that look clean rather than grimy from standing in water, and see if the flowers are kept in a refrigerated crate.
The cooler you can keep your cut flowers, the longer they will last, according to Enfield. “Florists will store flowers in refrigerated coolers set at 33-35 degrees Fahrenheit, and tropical cut flowers like anthurium, birds of paradise, and tropical orchids are stored at 50-55 F,” she said. declared.
When you bring your flowers home, it is recommended that you place your arrangement in a cool room in cool water, away from direct sunlight and heat sources, such as stoves, fireplaces or heating vents.
When the stems of cut flowers are in water, the ends can become clogged, preventing them from absorbing water, according to Enfield.
She recommended using a sharp knife to cut 1 to 2 inches off the end of each stem when you first bring your flowers home and every two to three days thereafter. Scissors are not recommended as they tend to crush the stems.
This will allow them to continue to receive a steady stream of water. “To avoid an air bubble, always cut the stem under water and cut the stems at a 45 degree angle to maximize water absorption,” Enfield says.
Remove dead petals, extra foliage
Dead petals in your vase could be toxic to your surviving flowers, according to Gena Lorainne, horticulturist and planting expert at Fantastic Services, based in London.
“If possible, remove any petals or dead flowers from the vase,” Lorainne said. “This will prevent the spread of harmful bacteria among the rest of your flowers.”
Extra foliage can also prevent your flowers from getting the nutrients they need. “If there’s too much foliage, you can remove some of it because it can eat up most of the nutrients before they reach the flowers themselves,” she said. Removing the leaves from the water will also keep it cleaner longer.
Experts recommend changing the water in your vase every two to three days, or when the water no longer appears clear.
“Check the water in the vase daily, especially the first day or two, as fresh cut flowers can quickly absorb a lot of water,” Enfield said, adding that it’s never a good idea to let the vase dry up.
“If you use a water softener, it is best to use distilled water or deionized water for your cut flowers, because softened water contains too much sodium, which is not good for the flowers,” Enfield said.
To keep your Valentine’s Day flowers fresh and healthy, experts suggest adding flower food to your vase. “It’s usually found in flower shops, but it’s often sold with the bouquet itself,” Lorainne said. “Add it to the water every time you replace it.”
These floral solutions provide cut flowers with nutrients to help them last longer, according to Enfield.
While some homemade slime solutions may sound great in theory, they usually don’t work, experts say. They recommend avoiding the myths below.