May 29, 2020
You just received this gorgeous floral arrangement from your sister (on LORA Bloom, of course!) and now there's going to be a series of warm days. How do you take the best care of the flowers to last as long as possible?
Flowers and florists actually walk a thin line. Flowers are so beautiful and adored, but if they die within a matter of days there was either something wrong with them or the florist didn't provide a quality product. There's definitely more to it than that.
Most florists, especially those part of LORA Bloom take special care of flowers from the moment the flowers are selected from wholesalers. Temperature control, proper hydration and relax time are just a few techniques, but equally important is understanding the flower itself.
Just like the germination and growing process of plants, flowers too bloom for different amounts of time. For example, I recently shared in the LORA Bloom newsletter about garden roses. Garden roses are very differet than the typical red rose one can pick up at the grocery store. They are super fragrant, but many varieties have a very short vase life, perhaps only a few days before the petals start to drop. Does this mean they shouldn't be used? Of course not! What a special treat to experience the intoxication of a garden rose, even for that short of time!
Another example of shortlived flowers, peonies! Everyone LOVES peonies! Particularly sensitive to heat, a peony can bloom and wither within 3 to 5 days. Again, to experience that kind of beauty for just a few days is totally worth it!
When I was practicing floristry, I tried to stagger long-lasting and short-lived blooms in an arrangement. This way, the receiver could slowly pull out the short-lived blooms and still enjoy the rest of the arrangement, which I'll talk more about in a bit.
There are many many long-lasting flower choices out there. I wish to note for everyday arrangements like we are discussing here, florists already try to make great choices for these arrangements. However, it's other factors that impact the flowers after they leave the florist.
When you receive flowers for your home, choose a spot that is not directly in the sun and the coolest space in the house . Even bright lights, like a chandelier can produce a lot of heat and cause those blooms to deteriorate.
If you have a/c at home, this will help. The optimal temperature for most flowers to minimize the enthelyne process that inevitably occurs is between 38 and 42 degrees. Anything under 68 to 70 degrees should be fine. Over that and the blooms will probably wilt sooner.
As soon as a stem enters the water, the potential for bacteria has begun. Over a prolonged period of time, the stem breaks down and bacteria will grow. This is normal. You can slow this process by swapping out the water every day or so. It should remain clear. If the water gets milky or murky in any way, change it. Stinky water has got to go too!
Slowly try to pour the water out and refill under the faucet or with a water pitcher. I recently posted on IGTV a quick video on how to easily swap the water out. Look it up!
This can be tricky. Florists use all sorts of techniques to secure blooms into a vase. If you can, slowly and gently pull a flower out and trim the ends of the stem (cut at an angle!) and then reinsert it to its original position. This can be easier said than done, but the right amount of gentle pull and twist should do the trick!
I also recommend doing this after you've replenished the vase with fresh water. Flowers like to drink clean water too!
Like mentioned before, flowers will live for different amounts of time. As certain blooms wither and fall or dry up, pull them out individually rather than tossing the whole arrangement.
If you are discarding a large focal flower, perhaps reposition a few smaller blooms or greens to fill the in the hole you might see. Or, if the arrangement has more than just a couple stems to toss, perhaps pull apart the whole arrangement and make a new smaller arrangement with what is left. I recently shared a video on IGTV doing this exact thing at my home. See video ---> Here
Not only will this be FUN, but you'll lengthen the amount of time you have that arrangement in your home!
The next time you receive flowers, give these tricks a try. It should help you to enjoy that gorgeous arrangement for as long as possible.
*I do want to note, extreme weather happens! Multiple times in the spring here in Seattle, we have had a heat wave pass through. Even typical flowers that are usually long-lasting in cool temperatures can die quickly in extreme heat. Even florists struggle! There's only so much that can be done. Sometimes, Mother Nature takes control!
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