How To: Keep Cut Flowers Longer

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Flowers on the table - we recommend it highly! We like our flowers to last as long as possible.

Here are a few tips on keeping your flowers looking fresher longer.

Make homemade plant food: Flowers need food, water, and a clean environment. So their water should have a little food, like sugar, and some bleach to slow fungi and bacteria growth.

Here's a basic home recipe: 1 quart water + 2 tablespoons lemon juice + 1 tablespoon sugar + 1/2 teaspoon bleach.

Adjust sugar for different varieties: If you want to get all advanced, here's a chart with recommended sugar percentages for different varieties of cut flowers.

Trim stems: You want to open the stems up to the water, so cut off the dried bottoms at an angle to let them take up as much water as possible. Trim the ends, which tend to get gummy and closed, every three or four days to keep them fresh longer.

Remove leaves: Leaves left on the stems below the water level will quickly deteriorate and promote mold. Remove all leaves from the stems below the waterline.

Flower Resources from PlantTherapy
Wild Callas with Inspiring Color
AT Discount at Sprout Home, BKLYN
Flexible Vase Idea from Mitchell Gold
A Dozen Reasons to Buy from Florists
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Faith is the executive editor of The Kitchn and the author of three cookbooks. They include Bakeless Sweets (Spring 2013) as well as The Kitchn's first cookbook, which will be published in Fall 2014. She lives in Columbus, Ohio with her husband Mike.

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