The Best Tips to Make Your Cut Flowers Last Longer

Do you find that flowers don’t last as long as you might like once they’re cut? This is an issue that florists have been dealing with for centuries now.

As soon as flowers are cut, the race to keep them alive is on. Most flowers are only going to stick around for between 7 and 14 days.

You should, however, be able to figure out how to make cut flowers last longer than that by taking certain steps. Proper flower care will prevent flowers from wilting on you and dying sooner than they should.

If you want to learn how to keep flowers fresh for an extended period of time after they’ve been cut, we’ve got tips that’ll help you out. Continue reading to get the inside scoop on getting the most life possible out of cut flowers.

Cut Flower Stems Properly at the Start

Before you start trying to find out how to make cut flowers last longer, you’ll need to be sure fresh flowers are cut properly. If they aren’t, that alone could send them down the wrong path from the very start.

Here are a few tips for cutting the stems on fresh flowers:

  • Use a set of garden shears as opposed to a pair of dull scissors
  • Cut off approximately one to two inches when cutting fresh flowers
  • Trim the stems on flowers at an angle to improve their water intake

If you don’t cut fresh flowers properly, it might stop them from being able to get access to enough water. It’s why cutting them in the right way will be of the utmost importance.

Remove Some Leaves From Flowers

If fresh flowers have leaves growing from their stems, you should consider removing some of them. Generally speaking, most experts will tell you to prune any leaves that will fall below the water line.

You should also get into the habit of sneaking a peek at fresh flowers to see if any of the leaves on them have started to die. If they have, you should remove these leaves right away so that they don’t have a negative impact on the flowers that they’re on.

Removing leaves from flowers will ensure that the flowers themselves are getting the water and nutrients they need. It’ll also stop bacteria from growing in a beautiful floral arrangement.

Stick Cut Flowers Into Water ASAP

After you’re finished cutting and pruning fresh flowers, make it your mission to get them into water as soon as you possibly can. The longer flowers are out of water, the greater their chances of beginning to wilt.

Get your hands on a clean vase and fill it up with lukewarm water. Put your fresh flowers directly into it and allow them to soak up water for a few hours before checking on them.

More often than not, fresh flowers are going to be thirsty when you first get them into a vase, and they might need more water before you know it. Your goal from here on out will be to keep your flowers watered with as much fresh water as you can give them.

Provide Flowers With Flower Food

You might be able to get away with only giving your fresh flowers water at first. But you might also be able to make them last longer by setting them up with flower food.

Flower food can be mixed directly into the water that you give to your flowers. It’ll typically come in a small packet that can be dumped right into the water in a vase.

Ideally, you will want to add flower food to water before you put fresh flowers into a vase. This will allow you to make sure that the water doesn’t dilute the flower food too much. It’ll also give you an opportunity to make sure the water doesn’t get too concentrated with flower food.

As long as you feel good about how much flower food you’ve added to water, you can get fresh flowers into the water right after adding it. The flower food you add will supply cut flowers with all the nutrients they’ll need.

Keep Flowers Away From Sunlight, Heat, Etc.

In theory, you might think sticking fresh flowers in the sun might be good for them. But if cut flowers sit in direct sunlight for too long, they’re going to start to wilt before you get the chance to fully enjoy them.

When flowers are exposed to too much sunlight, it can dehydrate them. It’s why you should try to put flowers in a place that doesn’t get much sun throughout the day.

You will want to work to keep flowers away from more than just the sun, too. You’ll also want to move them away from:

  • Open windows
  • Appliances that produce heat
  • Heating vents
  • Ceiling fans

All of these things can dry out fresh flowers and cause them to wilt. It’s going to make it so much harder for you to figure out how to make cut flowers last longer.

You might be surprised to hear this, but you should also make sure fresh flowers aren’t positioned near any fresh fruits. Many fruits can give off ethylene gas that will reduce the lifespan of fresh flowers.

Change the Water for Flowers Regularly

As long as you work to keep fresh flowers away from any heat sources, you shouldn’t have to worry about them dehydrating. But even still, you won’t be able to get away with only giving flowers water once and leaving them be.

You also aren’t going to be able to get away with simply adding water to the same vase over and over again throughout the life of flowers. You will need to remove flowers from this vase and change the water for them regularly to keep them alive.

Every two to three days, you should take the flowers out of the vase you put them in initially and dump the water out of it. You should then clean the vase and put fresh water into it along with another packet of flower food.

While you’re at it, you’ll also want to cut another inch or two off your flowers with garden shears. It’ll make it easier for them to drink the fresh water that you’ll be providing for them.

Continue to repeat this process every few days until it’s finally time to let go of your flowers. It’ll make it possible for your flowers to last for way longer than they would otherwise.

Experiment With Other Flower Care Strategies

Over the years, people have tried all kinds of off-the-wall things to keep cut flowers fresh. You might want to experiment with a few of them to see how successful they are for you.

For example, some people swear by mixing together 2 tablespoons of water and 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and adding them to a vase with fresh flowers. The thought is that the apple cider vinegar will stop bacteria from growing in the vase while also providing the flowers with sugar to keep them alive.

There are also other methods that people swear by, including:

  • Mixing one crushed aspirin into a vase filled with water to lower its pH level and prevent flowers from wilting
  • Putting 1/4 teaspoon of bleach into a vase filled with water to kill bacteria and keep the water looking clearer
  • Adding a copper penny to a vase filled with water to eliminate bacteria and encourage flower growth
  • Pouring 1/4 cup of soda into a vase filled with water to provide flowers with sugar to keep them fresher for longer

Believe it or not, there are even some people who go as far as to add vodka to the water used for fresh flowers. It’s said to stop flowers from producing ethylene, which can result in them wilting.

You might want to give these methods a try to see which ones work for you. Some people have enjoyed success with them in the past.

Make Sure You Know How to Make Cut Flowers Last Longer

If you don’t provide fresh cut flowers with the proper flower care, you might not be able to get even one week out of them, let alone two or more weeks. But as you’ve seen here, it shouldn’t be too difficult to figure out how to make cut flowers last longer.

The key is getting flowers cut and into fresh water with flower food as soon as you can. As long as you do that, you should be well on your way to keeping fresh flowers around for a long time.

Read through the rest of the articles on our blog for more flower care tips.