For years, I was of the opinion that fresh flowers were an expensive way to decorate… that is until my wedding when I needed some silk flowers! Suddenly, I learned to decorate with fresh cut flowers… on a budget! Here are a few tips for getting the most from fresh flowers:
Choose a Long-Lasting Stem Type
Pick a variety with a stiff stem. The woodier the better. Soft-stemmed flowers like gerbia daisies (my favorite!), tulips, and lilies don’t last long. They tend to wilt quickly and their soft stems and heavy flower heads lend themselves well to bending over… Instead, go for things like daisies, carnations, and even roses. Pick bunches with plenty of stiff greenery that helps to support the blooms.
Keep Fresh Water in the Vase
Change the water in your vases every 2-3 days. When you do this, rinse the bouquet’s stems a bit before putting the flowers back in the vase. This will help prolong the life of the flower and ward of the slimy-ickies that often grown on the stems and in the vase.
Shop for Flowers by Occasion
Special events call for special flowers! Roses, as we all know, are generally more expensive. Save them for special occasions, and then shop sales at places like ProFlowers.com and Flowerspot.com. These sites often run sales that are very competitive with your local supermarket’s prices, and the flowers you’ll get are much fresher than the ones you’ll find locally. I’ve ordered roses online and had them last for 3 weeks! To me, this is totally worth it, even if I have to pay a little extra in shipping. Ordering online is also a very convenient way to send a gift for a birthday, Mother’s Day, or just to say “I’m thinking of you.” Picking a special arrangement is often just as cheap as picking up a generic bouquet at the grocery store and the recipient will get the extra surprise of receiving a package just for them! Another place to get large amounts of flowers for a very good price is Sam’s Club. They often have bundles of very fresh flowers for way less than your local grocery store… This is how I got all of my fresh flowers for my wedding!
Re-purposing Fresh Cut Flowers
This sounds funny, I know, but there are ways to re-purpose spent blooms. My favorite is to go through bouquet just as it’s losing it’s luster and pull out any blooms that are still fresh and pretty. Trim the stems down and place in fresh water in smaller vases for places like your kitchen windowsill or bathroom counter. Often just trimming and providing with fresh water will make these blooms last a few more days! The next way is to dry them! If you have a woody-stemmed flower like a rose, you can lay it on a flat surface, or hang it upside down to dry. You’ll get the best results if you dry the flowers right before they wilt or discolor. Once dried, you can assemble a new bouquet or lay the flowers on your dresser or mantle for year-long decor! What are your favorite fresh flower decorating tips?