5 Ways to Preserve Your Flowers
Few things are more beautiful than a fresh, colorful bouquet of fragrant flowers, and the fact that their beauty is fleeting is a part of their charm. However, if you have your heart set on keeping your pretty blooms around well beyond a few weeks, then try one of the methods below to preserve your special memories and your special bouquet.
How to Preserve Flowers
There are several different methods of preserving flowers that vary in cost and difficulty, as well as how the finished product looks. There are some delicate florals, though, which may not do well with any type of preservation. Trial and error and a little patience will go long way in developing what may end being an enjoyable hobby.
1. Air Drying
A simple and inexpensive way to preserve roses forever is to air dry them. Choose roses with stems that are already fairly dry and with blooms that have not yet begun to wither. Trim the stems, remove the leaves, and then hang them upside down to dry. Tape them to a wall or tie them to hook in a cool, dark room to preserve the color. After a week or two, your flowers should be dried and preserved. Tip: Use hairspray to keep the blooms and petals in place when they are hung upside down.
A common method of preserving flowers that has been used for centuries, placing blossoms between the pages of a heavy book is tried and true. Choose a flower that is at its peak and make sure it is not wet. If the bloom you have chosen is particularly full and has an abundance of petals, pinch out a few that are in the center so it will flatten easier when placed between the pages of a book. If pressing more than one flower, flip the pages to allow for 1/8th of an inch thickness between them. Once the blooms are firmly placed within the pages of a book, close it and place several heavy books on top for added weight. Leave for 2-3 weeks. If the flower is dry to the touch, it’s ready to be removed and used however you like!
3. Silica Gel
Silica gel is great to use if you want to preserve the color and shape of the rose as closely as possible. Select your rose and remove the stem so only the head of the rose remains. Fill a plastic container with several inches of silica gel, and place the rose within so that it is facing up. Slowly add more silica gel making sure all the small bits get in between the petals. Try not to squish or flatten the rose as how it rests in the silica gel is how it will be preserved. Once the rose looks completely dry, typically in 2 to 3 weeks, it can be removed from the solution. Use a tiny brush to remove any leftover silica beads from inside the flower and the preservation process is complete.
For a lifelike method of preservation, glycerin is the way to go. Glycerin replaces the water in the flower which keeps the stems, leaves, and blossom supple. It’s expensive, though, and the color fades after a while, which is why some hobbyists add food coloring or other dyes to preserve the color. Select your flower in peak condition and cut the stem to six inches. Cut the stem on a diagonal and peel off a little bit of skin from the base of the stem. Combine 2 parts warm water to 1 part glycerin in a pitcher. Place your bloom into this solution and leave it be for 2-3 weeks. If the petals are rubbery and pliable, then it’s ready to be removed.
If you have gorgeous dahlia or rose, or another remarkable bloom, you’d like to preserve forever, consider putting it in resin. Using resin is also a great way to create one-of-kind art that will display your precious blooms. Before starting, make sure your flower is completely dry. Next, mix the resin according to package instructions and use tweezers to place the bloom within the solution. Allow the resin to cure for 2-3 days and then remove from the mold. Sand off any rough edges and admire your finished piece.
Need fresh, high-quality blooms at affordable prices? Then visit Cascade’s online catalog of flowers and supplies for all your floral hobbies or events.