Prolong the beauty of your bouquets with these expert tips.
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The flowers at your local florist may look as though they were just picked, but many of them were actually cut days ago, then moved thousands of miles, and possibly stored in a warehouse for a few more days.
The goal of growers and florists is to figure out ways to extend the life of cut flowers. They spend millions of dollars on research aimed at finding out just how to do that. But once the flowers leave the florist, it's up to you to keep them looking good.
Buying Cut Flowers
- Don't buy cut flowers early in the day and then leave them in your car while you go shopping or run errands. Instead, go straight home.
- When you do get home, if you're not quite ready to put the flowers in a vase, then stick them in the refrigerator, but only if you don't have any fruit in the fridge. If you do have fruit in the fridge, place a layer of ice in a cooler, place a towel over the ice, and place the flowers on the towel.
Keep flowers Away From Fruits
- Various fruits, especially apples, give off ethylene gas, and ethylene is the enemy of cut flowers, because it hastens their demise.
- Many of you no doubt know that to ripen a green banana, all you need do is stick it in a bag with an apple inside. The ethylene given off by the apple causes the banana — or avocado or peach — to ripen quickly. That same ethylene will also cause a cut flower to wither. So, despite all the still-life paintings you may have seen that feature cut flowers and apples side by side, it's best to give the two as much distance as possible.
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