Two weeks ago, the world celebrated Valentine’s Day and I’m quite sure that our garbage trunks will be loaded with flowers that have gone bad. Instead of tossing my Valentine’s Day flowers ( I received them from Sam), I decided to dry and preserve them as dried flowers.
I often wish that my fresh bouquet of flowers could last but they usually never make it past a week. Moreover, you have to keep trimming the stems and changing the water in the vase in order to keep the flowers looking fresh. It’s a somewhat tedious task for me, especially with my current busy schedule. Thus, even though I love flowers, I do not exactly like to keep them – knowing that I would have to put in the time and effort to maintain the beauty of these flowers. Besides, the flowers would eventually end up in the dustbin anyway. So why bother to buy flowers?
Preserving the beauty of the delicates
But thank goodness there are easy and fuss-free ways of preserving flowers. The most common way of preserving them is by air-drying them to drive out the moisture in the flowers. The other way is the flower press method where you sandwich the flowers between pieces of paper with pressure. To speed up the process, you can even press flowers in a microwave too.
Preserve flowers by creating dried flowers
However, my favourite way of preserving flowers is probably to dry them so that the shape of the flowers are retained. Furthermore, this method requires only a string. Yes, all you’ll need is a string to tie up the bunch of flowers and hang it upside down. You can secure the flowers with a rubber band then hang them upside down.
Over here, I reused the flower stem holder (which comes together with my Valentine’s Day bouquet) to hold the flowers in place. Then I used some raffia strings and tie a loop to the holder so that I can hang it at my kitchen window grill.
The pink roses are still looking very fresh. Because I started to dry these flowers on the very day I receive these roses. Some of the petals had started turning brown so I decided not to keep them for too long and dry them instead.
After one week, the flowers started to shrivel.
The flowers should be left to dry in places where it’s dry and well-ventilated. You would not want mould to be growing on them so make sure you wipe the flowers dry before drying them and place them in well-ventilated dry places.
You have to hang them upside down to allow the air to wick moisture away from the blossoms. But why upside down? Based on my scientific knowledge of plants, water enters plants via the stems. Thus most of the moisture in plants are locked in its stems. By hanging them upside down, the stems will dehydrate faster. Furthermore, hang the flowers upside down also helps to retain the shape of the flowers better.
If you want to preserve the natural colour of the flowers, you should not place them directly under the sun. Be patient and let them dry slowly and naturally.
After two weeks of air-drying, I have beautiful dried roses in vintage hues.
The Eucalyptus baby blue leaves and baby breath actually dried up within a week. The roses, on the other hand, took a little longer. But after two weeks, the green stems turned brown. And that’s when I know they are completely dried and are ready for display at my dining table.
Next time, when I receive flowers, I no longer have to sigh and lament about having to keep them looking fresh and throwing them afterwards. I am just going to make dried flowers out of it. They are great as flat lay props or decorations to accessories your gifts, cards, letters and packages.
I personally prefer dried flowers over fresh flowers. What about you?