5 ways to make cut flowers last

Creating an eye-catching floral arrangement isn’t as easy as bunching a few blooms together.

A well-considered yet relaxed large display of flowers takes time and planning but will be a visual treat that makes a statement in the room with its burst of colours, textures and heights.

But all this preparation can go to waste quickly if you don’t prepare them to last as long as possible. 

These five easy tips will make your investment in real flowers pay off.

By Daniel Butkovich.

1. Slice the stems

Put freshly cut flowers in a bucket of lukewarm water for several hours.

Next, working underwater, cut 25 to 50mm off the stems on a 45° angle using sharp, clean scissors.

2. Avoid overcrowding

Don’t jam a bunch of flowers into a vase that’s too small, as the stems need to breathe. 

If they’re crammed together, the stems wilt quickly and release bacteria into the water.

3. Pick the spot

Keep flowers out of direct sunlight and away from cigarette smoke and the fruit bowl, as ripening fruit gives off a gas that causes flowers to wilt faster.

Remove any spent blooms.

4. Spray them fresh

A spritz of hairspray can help preserve the colour and shape of flowers.

Hold the can 300mm away from the arrangement and spray the undersides of the leaves and petals.



5. Make sugar water

Dissolve three tablespoons of sugar and two tablespoons of white vinegar per litre of lukewarm water.

Cover the stems by up to 100mm of the sugar water and change it every few days.