Simple Ways To Make The Most Of A Floral Arrangement

Protocol for your bringing your new stems home may seem as simple as finding a vase and pouring some water, but a few more steps can ensure a longer life span of your flowers and make them look better while they grace your halls. If your flowers came with a packet of "flower food," you can certainly add that, but other on-hand ingredients can make a big difference as well.

Reader's Digest suggests pouring soda into the bottom of the vase as a way to spur healthy growth. Apparently, the sugar content acts as nutrients for the stems, helping them stay strong for longer. But, don't dump a whole can in — stick with a fourth of a cup here and there. Clear sodas work best for flowers in transparent vases as well. You can also make a cocktail for your stems by adding a few drops of vodka. Killing off bacteria within the vase, the alcohol helps keep your glassware clean and your flowers fresh. Add a teaspoon of sugar and change the water at least every other day for best results. 

Keeping the water clean is one of the most important components of keeping healthy stems. Instead of filling the vase once and only adding clean water when you notice it getting murky, it's best to stay on top of it by changing every few days. Crushed aspirin, bleach, and apple cider vinegar all work as antibacterial agents that you can add to the water in the meantime, Reader's Digest explains.

Keep the leaves out of the water

Beyond keeping the water fresh with an added household ingredient, it's important to keep the leaves out of the water. Cosmopolitan notes that soggy leaves can spread bacteria in the vase after they rot — leading to that unpleasant smell, murky water, and drooping blossoms. Before you even put your stems into the vase, remove the leaves and cut the bottoms of the flowers. The outlet suggests doing so at a 45-degree angle, about an inch away from the bottom. With an increased surface area, your flowers can absorb more of the water that they need to stay strong.

Now that you've cut them and given them the nutrients they need, you can turn your attention to closed off blossoms. According to Cosmo, you can grab the flowers that have yet to bloom and place them in warm water for one minute before moving them into cold water for 20 minutes. This will help them open fully and stay in bloom in your home!

Finally, grab a penny from your wallet and make a wish while you drop it into your vase. The copper from the coin works to fend off bacteria and fungus from growing within the vessel. The outlet suggests aiming to use a penny minted prior to 1982, when the government started using less of the alloy in the coins. 

While keeping your flowers alive isn't rocket science, there are a few ways to care for your blossoms in a way that supports their longevity — giving you the most of your blooms for longer!