Those April showers are bringing beautiful May flowers! I don't know about you but I love live flowers. There's just something about their beauty, aroma, and presence that light up a room. The biggest dilemma we face while enjoying those blooms is how to make them last as long as possible. Here's my list of tricks!
Before using any vase, clean it with a little bit of Clorox to make sure that there are no bacteria or fungus in the vase. These culprits can kill your flowers faster. Next, add cool water to your vase and stir in the little packet of flower food that comes with a purchased bouquet. If you are using cut flowers from your yard create your own plant food by stirring in 1 teaspoon of sugar and 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar. The larger the vase you might need to increase the proportions of ingredients in your food. Now you are ready to re-cut and arrange your beautiful blooms. Some of the excess leaves need to be removed so the water stays fresh longer, otherwise your water can get stagnant and stinky not to mention full of bacteria which will kill your blooms sooner.
Before adding your flowers to your vase, they will need to be re-cut under cool running water. Whether you are buying a bouquet or cutting fresh flowers from your yard, you can enjoy them longer with this little trick I learned a long time ago. Your goal is to recreate a connection between the freshly cut stem and a drop of water on the tip until they are down in the water in your vase. I use a sharp pair of scissors or pruning shears to re-cut the tips while letting the water run over the stem where I am cutting. As you move them to your vase, keep a drop of water on the tip of the stem. This is key to their beginning to drink the water in your vase and keeping oxygen out of the stem.
After you've cut and arranged them all, enjoy them for a few days. When they begin to show signs of wilting, take them back to your sink and re-cut them under cool running water again. This time, look for the dead or darker part of the stem where life is gone and cut about 1/2 inch just above it where the stem is green and still living. It's at this point that I usually move my flowers to a shorter vase of a different kind. It's like having a whole new bouquet! You'll lose some flowers along the way here and I just simply pull those out and throw them away. A few days later, when they begin wilting again, I re-cut the ones that are still in great shape. This time, I usually cut them down to about 3 or 4 inch stems and remove all the leaves.
One of my favorite little vases to use at this point, when they're short stemmed, is a glass tooth brush holder with holes. I picked up a white ceramic one a few
years ago at the thrift store. The great thing about using a tooth brush holder as a vase is it automatically arranges your flowers for you when the stems are really short and it holds them in place so they can continue to drink water. I cut each flower down again under running water and place them in the holes of the tooth brush holder and place them on the table or in the guest bath as an added welcome to guests.
I love live flowers but you rarely get your money's worth unless you learn how to re-cut and restore. They're kind of like humans, we have to continue to be restored to the living water of God's word and nourishment. The key to reviving and restoring beautiful things is removing the dead parts and restoring their connection to the nourishment that living water brings. This life principle can ensure you enjoy beautiful blessings, not just in the life of your flowers but in the life you've been given to live to the fullest by your Creator. His love guarantees that you can lavish in the beauty of living blooms!
But whoever drinks from the water that I will give him will never get thirsty again-ever! In fact, the water I will give him will become a well of water springing up within him for eternal life. John 4:14