With Valentine’s day approaching, many of you may find yourselves with bouquets of fresh flowers. And others of you may be cutting flowers from your gardens later this year.
Either way, you’ll want to keep those flowers fresh as long as you can.
Guess what’s the most effective method for keeping these lovelies in pristine condition. Pennies? No. Bleach? Unh-unh. Aspirin, hairspray, vodka, vinegar with sugar? Not even close.
ProFlowers, the online florist, tested all of the methods above and then some. The test results indicated these two methods work best: One, refrigerate your flowers each night; and two, add ¼ cup of soda pop (preferably clear, such as 7-Up) to the vase water. This reportedly works even better than flower food.
If you pick the flowers yourself, be sure to cut them with a sharp knife or bypass pruners in the morning or early evening rather than during the mid-day heat. Then insert the stems in clean water right away.
Whether you receive flowers as a gift or harvest them yourself, cut the stems at an angle for better water absorption, and remove all leaves below the water line to minimize bacterial growth.
Opinions vary concerning water temperature, but most sources recommend lukewarm water in the vase. Add more water as needed, and clean the vase every few days.
Keep the flowers away from full sun, fruit, and hot and cold drafts.
Among the longest-lasting cutting flowers are zinnias, carnations, alstroemerias, delphiniums, daisies, peonies and sunflowers. So plant your garden accordingly for bountiful blooms and durable arrangements.