Starry eyed lovers of all ages delight in Valentine’s Day, where flowers are the centrepeice of your romance. No other day of the year are flowers – red roses especially – in such high demand. For some, it might be the only flowers they receive until the next 14th of February. Whether a rare or common treat, Valentine’s Day flowers have so much heart and feelings behind the gesture, so of course you want to ensure they look fresh and vibrant for as long as possible!
It’s hot. It’s humid. The days are glaringly bright. All enemies of flower longevity, but with our florist tips on how to make your garden blooms & red roses last longer, you’ll be sure to keep your Valentine’s Day flowers as fresh as the love they represent!
1. Keep Cool:
While roses flourish in the heat of summer, while they’re on the bush, once cut they like it coooool, or they’ll wilt and fade away fast. Position your vase away from direct sunlight and heat sources, such as the kettle, oven or cooktop, in the kitchen. A cooler, shaded spot can significantly prolong the life of your blooms. If possible, keep them in air conditioning, or at least move them to an air conditioned room during the hottest parts of the day.
2. Hydration is Key:
Just as we crave a cool drink on a scorching day, your Valentine’s Day flowers are super thirsty beauties. Think of their stems as straws and the flowers as sponges. Evaporation from the petals is constant, from either warm air, breezes or air conditioning. Keep an eye on the water level in your vase, as it can go down surprisingly fast, especially when you have a lot of stems drinking!
3. Prevent Bacteria:
Bacteria is the biggest threat to the freshness of your flowers! The bacteria clogs up the “straws” of the stems, stopping the flower’s ability to stay hydrated. This is the most surprising thing about flower longevity to most people, but it’s so easy to combat! Choose a vase clean enough to drink out of and keep the water super fresh by tipping it out and refilling every other day. Floral preservatives are often given with flowers, to add to the vase water, and it’s mostly dried bleach! A more eco-friendly way than those plastic packets is to just add half a teaspoon of household bleach to your vase water every time you change out the water. It’s like adding chlorine to drinking water, but for flowers.
4. Trim Stems
We’ve already said flower stems are like straws, and their ends can get soggy. Just like the soggy end of a straw, liquid is stopped from being pulled up it. Snip off 1 to 2 cm of the stems every few days, on an angle, which opens more of the stem to water absorption. This simple act can also prevent air bubbles from forming in the stems, ensuring a steady flow of hydration to special Valentine’s flowers. Pair this with the above tips, and you’re setting the stage for the longest possible enduring beauty.
5. Just for Roses:
If you’ve been given roses for Valentine’s Day, firstly, lucky you! Secondly, there’s a trick to bring them back to life, if they start to look sad early. Maybe it was the heat or air bubbles in the stems, either way, this method works only on roses, due to their woody stems. It seems like you’ll be harming them, but it’s a way to force moisture back up the stem, to the flower head. It’s so effective, it can force the air bubble completely out of the stem!
- How to revive wilting roses:
- boil a full kettle of water.
- Prepare a very clean bucket or similar.
- Pour the steaming water into the bucket and add a tsp of bleach (+ optional tsp of sugar).
- Remove roses, one at a time from the vase and give the end of stems a good snip on an angle.
- Place roses in the bucket so that the head of rose is over the lip of the bucket and not enduring any hot steam from the water.
- Leave the roses in the bucket until the water cools and the flower heads are lifted.
- Place back into the vase (with fresh water).
BONUS tip: Choose a non-metal vase. It adds an acidity to the water that’s not favourable to flowers.
SECOND BONUS tip: keep fruit in the fridge or well away from your flowers, as fruit gasses “ripen” flowers, so that they fade faster than normal.
Seven tips to keep your flowers fresh might seem like a lot, however it really only takes a few minutes every other day, that allows you to enjoy your lovely blooms for days longer than otherwise! Follow these tips, and you’ll be well on your way to preserving the freshness and vibrancy of your Valentine’s Day flowers, even under the unforgiving Australian summer sun. 🌹💧
See our 2014 Valentine’s Day flowers, of a dozen red roses, delivered to Gympie, here: A Dozen Red Roses, Bouquet for Valentine’s Day