Extend the Life of Your Flowers With These 5 Florist-Approved Secrets

No green thumb? No problem.

Is there anything better than a bouquet of fresh-cut flowers? The glorious burst of color and gorgeous scent can transform any room. But here's the unfortunate truth: They are already dying when you set them in the vase. All flower arrangements begin wilting within days, and most are dead within a week. That said, you can do some things to extend the lifespan of your blooms. We asked Christina Stembel of Farmgirl Flowers to share how she helps a flower arrangement live its best–and longest possible–life.

01 of 05

Trim Stems Daily

According to Stembel, long-lasting flowers begin with healthy stems. Trimming flower stems every day allows blooms to hydrate more efficiently. It's crucial to cut each stem at an angle to maximize the surface area through which flowers intake water. Also, try to cut stems under warm (not hot) running water to ensure that they get hydrated immediately.

02 of 05

Replace Water Every Day

Regularly changing an arrangement's water supply is yet another trick to help keep your flowers looking (and smelling) fresh. "Bacteria build-up is natural as your flowers age," Stembel says. "Remove sediment by giving your stems a fresh drink, and if you see build-up at the bottom of your vase, give the vessel a quick clean." How much water is sufficient? In general, Stembel recommends filling a vase three-quarters of the way with cool tap water before putting flowers on display; regularly replacing and replenishing water is essential to beautiful blooms.

03 of 05

Keep Away From Direct Light and Heat

Resist the temptation to display your bouquet in front of a window, because freshly cut stems are surprisingly light sensitive. Stembel says that flower arrangements should be removed from direct sunlight and heat sources. It's also best to avoid high humidity zones if possible.

04 of 05

Pluck Wilted Flowers Out ASAP

Once you notice a cut flower in your arrangement has died, remove it from the bouquet as quickly as possible. Like fresh fruit and vegetables, flowers release ethylene gas, which can be harmful to the longevity of living flowers. To prevent a dying bloom from killing off its neighbors, simply thank it for its service, and pluck it out.

05 of 05

Keep the Flower Food Flowing (or Make Your Own)

Yet another effective way to keep bouquets fresh is to add a bit of bleach. "If you're busy or forgetful, adding a few drops of bleach to a vase will help extend the life of your stems, since it slows the growth of bacteria," Stembel says. Flower food is equally effective, of course.

Test these tactics out on your bouquet, and prepare yourself for long-lasting blooms.

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