Cut flower care – keep your mixed bouquet beautiful
If you have a mixed bouquet and you want to make sure that your blooms last as long as possible, you will need to take the right steps to ensure that your blooms stay happy and healthy. Bacteria is the number one enemy of fresh blooms but there are several other factors that can shorten their lifespan. Here are some basic cut flower care tips to follow whenever you receive a fresh bouquet.
Choose a vase
Before you do anything, you should place your arrangement in some water while you prepare their new home. Take a look at the size of the cut flower bouquet so that you can choose a vase that will suit the size of the arrangement. The more flowers in the bouquet, the wider the vase will need to be. The longer the stems, the taller the vase should be. Wash the vase thoroughly before adding water to approximately the halfway mark and add some flower food. Your florist should include a package with the bouquet. Make sure that you follow the instructions on the package based on the amount of water.
Once your vase is ready, it’s time to tend to your cut flower bouquet. You can now remove any packaging material like ribbons and decorative paper. Take each stem and remove the lower leaves. You don’t want them to end up in the vase or, worse yet, in the vase water. This will encourage bacterial growth and shorten the lifespan of your blooms. Trim each stem by about 2 – 3cm. Make sure you do so at an angle. This helps create a larger surface area from which your flowers can absorb water. It also prevents the stems from resting directly on the bottom of the vase which can obstruct absorption. Cutting the stems underwater is also a good idea because it doesn’t allow for air to sneak inside the stem.
Setting your stems
Many will agree that it is easiest to trim and arrange as you go. So, this stem goes hand in hand with the previous one. For this reason, you should trim some foliage stems first and arrange them around the rim of the vase. Followed by some focal flowers and set them in the middle. They might not stay put at first but, as you add more blooms, you will secure them in the centre. Add your mass flowers around the focal flowers and then add your fillers. Finish off with some more foliage here and there.
Selecting a spot
Your cut flower arrangement will need to be placed in the perfect spot if you want to ensure that it lasts more than just a few days. If you place it in the sun, the blooms will soon wilt due to the heat. If you place them in a windy area, the airflow can cause petals to fall prematurely. If you have pets or young children, it is also important to set your bouquet somewhere out of the way.
Once on display, you will need to care for your cut flower arrangement on a daily basis. This won’t take more than a few minutes out of your day. All you need to do is check the water level and the quality of the vase water. If it is cloudy, you should change the water and wash your vase right away. You should also inspect the stems and, if they are slimy, trim them a few centimetres to get rid of bacterial growth. Remove any dying or dead flowers as soon as you spot them. Dying plant material rots and causes healthy stems to decay prematurely.
With these handy cut flower care tips in mind, you will get that much more beauty out of your bouquets. If you have removed a number of dying stems and your bouquet is looking a little small in a large vase, you could move it to a new vase. Similarly, if you don’t have a vase large enough to hold all of the stems, you can always split it up to create more than one arrangement.