Fresh flowers in a vase are a beautiful addition to any room. Most women love live, fragrant bouquets. Such decoration will decorate our table or dresser perfectly and will enliven the room. But what to do to make sure that flowers will keep their wonderful appearance for as long as possible?
Preparing cut flowers
The first step is to cut off all the damaged and sick leaves. The fewer leaves you leave behind, the better. This way you reduce water loss from the plant. Also remove the leaves from the lower part of the stem so that they are not in the water, as this will contribute to the formation of substances that promote the development of rot. Contaminated water will significantly shorten the life of the flowers. If the plant has thorns, remove them as well.
Before putting cut flowers in a vase, cut the ends of the stems diagonally, which will increase the absorption of water by the plant. The cut should be long (about 2-3 cm) and made with a clean and sharp knife. In this way, we prepare plants with hard, woody stems, such as roses.
What cut flowers are ideal for the vase?
Roses and peonies always look classic and very elegant. Thanks to their delicate petals and very feminine colors, they will surely delight us. They will add charm to your living room or dining room. They can also be combined together, which will give a beautiful effect
Lilies of the valley and sweet peas are perfect for small vases. These two types of flowers are more associated with a rustic style and many ladies like to decorate windowsills or kitchen tables with them
Tall vases will certainly look great with the contents of such flowers as asters or tulips. They are quite showy, have long stems, and are also associated with spring. Additionally, both asters and tulips are quite hardy and in a vase they will certainly last about a week.
Other treatments for prolonging the life of cut flowers
Take the time to prepare the flowers before putting them in the vase. This will prolong their natural fresh appearance. What else can we do and for which flowers?
The soft stems of wolfberries, poppies and bellflowers contain sap that resembles thick milk. Such plants before putting them in water undergo a treatment called tanning. Just for half a minute hold the ends of the stems in front of us with a candle or lighter fire. The elevated temperature will free the stems of accumulated air bubbles. When we put the flower in water, the plant will absorb more water to replace the released air.
Plants with mucus in their stems should be placed in warm water for a few hours. After cutting such a flower the mucilage immediately dries up, preventing the transport of water. Warm water will remove the mucus from the stems and allow the transport of nutrients. Such flowers include narcissus or hyacinth.
Put sunflowers, chrysanthemums and the roses we love so much into boiling water for half a minute and then immediately into a vase of cold water. We should scald about five centimeters of the ends. Boiling water will remove air bubbles from the stems. The cold water will cause the assimilation crumb (plant tissue) to shrink and thus fill with fresh water.
Water and cut flowers
The best water for cut flowers is rain water. However, if you do not have rainwater, replace it with boiled, filtered water. Tap water contains a lot of air bubbles. This clogs up the flower stems and impedes water transport. Warm (not hot) water stimulates the plant’s life processes and water transport, but it is not advisable to keep flowers at higher temperatures for longer periods of time.
An important consideration is the water level in the vase. Plants with soft stems, like gerberas and tulips, need a low water level, up to ¼ of the stem. And flowers with woody, hard ends require high water levels, above half the stem length.
Cut flower nutrients
Many florists and stores offer ready-made mixes containing cut flower nutrients. Simply pour the powder into the water in the vase, stir and insert the flowers. The conditioner will extend the life of the flowers and allow the buds to fully bloom. Such preparations are also available in the version of granules or liquid. On the package you will find the method of use and dosage.
It is best to buy bouquets in the florist, because we get a nutrient in the form of a gratis. For many species of flowers conditioners are prepared specially. We can find, among others, nutrients for roses, lilies, kalinas or hydrangeas.
It is worth mentioning that preparations extending the life of cut flowers have one valuable advantage. When using them, you do not need to change the water. It is enough to regularly refill the solution. This also prevents rotting processes, so trimming the ends of the stems is also not required.
If the bouquet comes with a bag of ready-made conditioner, half is usually enough to dissolve in half a liter of water. If you have a lot of flowers in a vase, pour in the whole sachet of powdered conditioner.
If you don’t have a ready-made mix, you can substitute it with home-made methods. You can add a tablespoon of sugar, aspirin or a copper coin to the vase. However, you should not expect spectacular results. This will not replace the necessary nutrients, necessary for the development of cut plants. On ready-made mixtures is attached the method of use and dosage, which we should follow to achieve the best effect. Such products should not be accessible to children and animals.
Nutrients for cut flowers contain sugar that plays the role of food for the plant. It also has phytohormones that prolong the metabolism of the plant, which delays the process of flowering. Additionally, they regulate the proper pH of the water and fight bacteria.
Using nutrients for cut plants prolongs their life and allows you to enjoy their natural beauty for a longer time.