Popped into a vase and placed on display in all their glory, flowers add a ray of sunshine to any home and are the perfect gift to show you care – for a variety of occasions. Since you don’t want a drooping bouquet to rain all over your parade, we asked our flower expert Robert Quak for some advice on how to make your arrangement last for days (and days):
1. With sharp scissors, cut the stem at a 45˚angle before placing in a vase to expose fresh tissue to the water, which will move up the plant more freely. Do this every time you change the water.
2. Add flower food to the vase (if attached). If you run out of food you can make your own by adding a teaspoon of bleach and a tablespoon of sugar to approximately 2 litres of water.
3. As they are already at the peak of their life cycle, it’s best to avoid putting flowers in direct sunlight because it encourages them to mature; in this sense, they are different from potted or garden plants.
4. Immediately remove dead or wilting leaves from fresh flower arrangements as they decay in water. This leaves room for the spread of bacteria which could affect the rest.
5. Try not to cram your flowers into a container that’s too small – they need room to breathe.
6. Use warm water in the vase and refill every day or so. Ensure the vase is cleaned thoroughly before use to minimise any bacteria.
7. Fruit emits ethylene gas which causes flowers to deteriorate, so try to keep them away from the fruit bowl.
8. Roses are a little different. Cut them underwater to avoid getting air bubbles in the stem. After a few days if the rose heads start to droop, put the whole flower in lukewarm water - this can occasionally rejuvenate them.
If you still need a little convincing as to why flowers make the best Mother’s Day gift, here are 10 top reasons that are sure to win you over. Got a question for our experts? Send us a message on any of our social channels using the hashtag #AskSpinneys.