Caring For Your Cut Flowers

Store Street’s Orchidya shares their top tips on for keeping your cut flowers in tip top condition:

How do I choose a vase?

Choose a vase that’s half the height of the flowers. If the bouquet is bottom-heavy, use a narrower vase, if the top is overpowering, use a wider one. Make sure that your vase is clean before use. Leave the vase to dry naturally, as using a towel can reintroduce bacteria which may cause your flowers to deteriorate quicker.

How much water do I add to a vase?

Fill the vase two-thirds with water – use lukewarm water as flowers can drink this more quickly. Avoid using hot or cold water as this can shock delicate flowers. If needed, leave the filled vase to sit to allow the water to reach room temperature and let any air bubbles escape. Add the flower food – this contains sugar to feed the flowers and bleach which slows the growth of algae and bacteria. Algae clogs up the stems and makes it harder for the flowers to drink.

Why should I trim my flower stems?

Flower stems dry out after they have been picked. We send flowers in bud when they are full of stored water, but they will be thirsty on arrival. Cut about 2-3cm from the bottom of the stems at a 45-degree angle. This stops the stems from resting on the bottom of the vase and increases the surface area of them – allowing for better water uptake. Remove any foliage that will sit below the waterline, as this will decompose quickly and increase the build-up of debris in the vase. Top tip: cut the stems with sharp scissors, and cut thick-stemmed flowers such as amaryllis with a sharp knife. Blunt scissors or dull instruments can crush the stems and prevent the flowers from properly absorbing water.

Where should I keep my flowers?

Cut flowers last longer in cool conditions. To prevent flowers from drying out and wilting, keep them away from drafts and heat sources. Avoid placing them where they will be exposed to direct sunlight or on top of radiators. If you place them near a window, the flowers can also quickly get damaged.

How often should I change the water for my bouquet?

To keep your flowers blooming beautifully, make sure you trim the stems and refresh their water every few days. Even with flower food, bacteria eventually builds up in the vase and can clog up the stems, preventing flowers from drinking. Remove any dead or wilting stems from the arrangement, clean the vase with warm, soapy water and rinse thoroughly before refilling.