Up next in How to Arrange Flowers (7 videos)
Make floral arrangements that rival those of a professional florist with help from this Howcast video series on flower arranging.
You Will Need
- Fresh flowers
- Some warm water
- A clean bucket
- A sharp knife
- Some bleach
- And some sugar
- Hot water (optional)
- And gardening shears (optional)
Fill the clean bucket a third of the way with lukewarm water.
Add bleach & sugar
Add a few drops of bleach and 1 teaspoon of sugar per quart of water, and set the bucket aside. The sugar provides nutrients for the flowers, and the bleach rids the water of any bacteria.
Remove any leaves that will end up underwater in the vase. Weak leaves can be plucked by hand. Cut tougher leaves with a sharp knife, being careful not to damage the stem in the process.
Remove any thorns with a sharp knife or garden shears, being careful not to damage the stems.
Cut base of stem
Cut at least 1 inch from the base of the stem at a 45-degree angle with a sharp pair of garden shears, making the cut as clean and smooth as possible.
Place in bucket
Place each flower in the prepared bucket as soon as you cut its stem—the longer it takes, the more likely that air bubbles will seal off the passageways for water.
Condition all flowers
Continue conditioning each flower one at a time until they are all in the bucket.
Set in cool place
Set the bucket in a cool place out of direct sunlight, and away from fruits, vegetables, exhaust fumes, and cigarette smoke—all of which contain or emit chemicals toxic to flowers.
Let flowers drink
Let the flowers drink for several hours before arranging, especially if they've come straight from your garden. Ideally, you should cut them in the evening, condition them overnight, and wake up to beautiful, strong flowers ready for the vase.