Nathan’s Flower TipsColby Morrell
Dorothy Draper said it best, “A vase of flowers or greens will bring even a dull room to life in the most delightful way. The small amount of trouble or expense involved is honestly repaid in real decorative effect.” Indeed fresh flowers are the perfect accessory for any space, but they tend to evoke anxiety over cost and caring for them. Over the years I have used fresh floral on nearly every project I’ve had the pleasure to work on. Having had so much experience with flowers, I’ve come up with tips and tricks that will certainly quell any anxiety or reservations. Check them out below!
Tip # 1
Replenish water frequently and completely change the water every 2-3 days. Flowers are thirsty little buggers and go through water surprisingly quick. It may sound like a hassle, but keeping plenty of clean water in the vase will make your flowers last much longer. If you leave water sitting in the vase longer than just a couple of days, bacteria will start to build up and smell horribly! This is horrible for your vase, nose, and you guessed it – your flowers.
Keep flowers away from fruits and vegetables to make them last longer. Surprising huh? I noticed that flowers sitting next to bowls of fruit seemed to wilt much faster than elsewhere, so I did some research. It turns out that fruit and vegetables produce ethylene gas to help them ripen. This is a completely natural process, but flowers don’t really care for it.
While you’re at it, keep flowers away from heat or bright light. It’s common to set a vase of flowers by the window on a gorgeous, sunny day. A lot of people think that because potted plants need sun, flowers must too. This isn’t true in anyway, and flowers are actually the opposite of potted plants. Opt to keep your fresh cut flowers in a cool dark spot to make them last longer.
Tip # 4
Use sharp scissors when cutting. The stems of flowers have delicate tissue cells that absorb water. If you use dull scissors to cut, you will damage the tissue cells and the flower will not absorb water properly. Sharp scissors or shears guarantee a clean cut and unharmed cells.
Place closed flowers in warm water. This helps tightly closed flower heads, such as roses or ranunculus, to open fully. Leave them in water for a day or two before using them to ensure a bright and full arrangement.
When it comes to creating an arrangement, add large, heavy flowers first, then fill in with smaller ones. I prefer to keep things more natural, so I like my arrangements to look effortless. Don’t overthink it, just place individual stems far enough apart so that they have room to shine! Include multiple types of blooms and various shapes and stem lengths.