How-To Tuesday: Flower care, keeping cut flowers fresh

before i began working with flowers i was just as confused as anyone on how to make my flowers last the longest and how i could possibly avoid that stinky smell that often comes with emptying a week (or two) old vase of flowers...there is nothing quite like it. well there are a few things that come close but i'm won't go there.

you've probably heard of all of the "tricks", an aspirin, a penny, vinegar and of course the packet of white powder that comes with some fresh cut flowers. ever wonder why these work? the goal of all of these things is to reduce the bacteria growth in the water, here's how:
  • copper is a natural fungicide and therefore helps prevent the growth of too many yeasts or funghi.
  • aspirin is also an acid which will kill bacteria overgrowth.
  • lemon juice or vinegar also work as a natural bacteria killer (you only need one or two tablespoons).
the truth is while all of these things work, the best thing to do is completely change the water and give the stems a fresh cut. even better you would wash the vase too. sometimes it can be difficult to change the water in a more complicated arrangement so in this case simply let the water overflow and flush out the old water, this is still better than not changing the water at all.

a note on water temperature, keep it lukewarm to cool. this is best for most stem types but i will get more specific about this soon.

if you do any one or a combination of this tricks you will be able to enjoy your flowers for a few more "stink-free" days.

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