How to Inspect Flowers for Freshness

Learn how to inspect flowers for freshness from floral designer Sarah Brysk Cohen in this DIY wedding flowers video from Howcast.

Now I’m going to show you how to shop at your local bodega and pick flowers. As you can see I have a bunch of flowers here that I have just picked up at our local bodega. And typically what you’ll find there are inexpensive flowers like carnations, you might have some berries like these hypericum, some mums, some snapdragons. And selecting the flowers from a bodega, the most important thing is to try and get the freshest thing you can possibly get. You’re going to have to take them home and arrange them yourself. And you can clean them up a bit, but what you can’t do is make them more fresh than the started out.

So a really, really important tip is to take things out of the containers in the bodega and pull them out to see what you can see. Sometimes things look really great from the top. Oh, these carnations are nicely bloomed out, but I don’t know what’s waiting for me when I pull them out of the bucket. So pull them out. Try and look to see how fresh are the stems? Are they slimy? Are they falling apart in your hands? Are they very yellow or brown? Are the leaves falling off? Is it very foggy? Is there a lot of condensation in the wrapper? They’ve been sitting around kind of cooking in the heat for a while. This is an important step.

You can also just simply ask the proprietor of the bodega, how long have these flowers been here? How fresh are they? But, you may not get the answer you’re looking for. So definitely inspect the flowers before you bring them home, again, looking at the stems for freshness.

That’s how you choose flowers from a bodega.