Make Flower Arrangements Last Longer

Fresh flowers are an easy way to brighten your surroundings, but the downside is a short shelf life. Here's how to make flower arrangements last longer.

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Flower arrangements are the perfect gift for showing love, friendship, and gratitude, but nobody wants to give a present that’s going to die after a few days. Follow these tips to make flower arrangements last longer.


Make Flower Arrangements Last Longer


Purchase the freshest flowers possible. Avoid flowers that are weeping, have discolored petals or are fully open with petals beginning to drop. These are signs that your bouquet is past peak.

Keep your flowers cool and with stems in at least an inch of water while transporting. In colder months, be sure to wrap flowers in a protective plastic sleeve to avoid exposure to freezing temperatures.

Do not leave fresh flowers or plants in vehicles for extended periods of time when temperatures are below 45 degrees even if they are wrapped.

Before arranging cut flowers trim approximately one inch off the bottom stems, cutting at an angle. Remove any stem leaves that are dead or dying and/or those that will be submerged in water in a vase.

Fill a clean vase halfway to the top with water that is room temperature. Arrange your flowers in the water and display in an area that isn’t too hot.

An old Yankee remedy of a teaspoon of sugar and a few drops of lemon juice added to the water is said to help to keep flower arrangements fresh for longer periods of time.

To prolong the life of the flowers keep in cool temperatures away from direct sunlight and change the water every few days, trimming stems to remove any decaying ends when you do. Do not wait for the water to become green and slimy with decaying plant stems before changing it.

Do not leave dead blooms in the bouquet. Remove any flowers that die immediately while you continue to enjoy the live ones. When you are down to just a few live flowers, remove these, trim the stems and arrange in a smaller vase.

Have any of your own tips for how to make flower arrangements last longer? Let us know!

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This post was first published in 2011 and has been updated. 


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