A wooden scoop filled with white powder is held in front of a colorful bouquet of flowers, including daisies and pink blossoms.

How to Extend the Life of Your Blooms with Flower Food

A recipe card provides steps for extending a bouquet's lifespan with flower food. Ingredients: flower food, lukewarm water, clean vase, sharp scissors. Directions include cleaning the vase, mixing flower food, trimming stems, arranging flowers, monitoring, and refreshing them.

How to Use Flower Food Like a Pro: A Recipe for Success

Flowers have the power to brighten any space and uplift our spirits with their singular, organic beauty. To extend the life of your bouquet for as long as possible and keep your home feeling warm and welcoming, maintaining the freshness and vibrancy of the flowers is ideal.

When you receive an arrangement from your local florist, each bloom is nourished and hydrated. Now, it's your turn to take special care of these blooms for maximum enjoyment. After a day or two, follow the recipe below to ensure your bouquet continues to offer alluring fragrances, vibrant hues, and beautiful textures.

On the other hand, if you receive a wrapped bouquet, your stems will need proper nourishment and hydration. In this case, follow the below steps right away.

Fortunately, there's a simple solution to keeping any kind of bouquet fresh, fragrant, and fabulous: flower food!

Understanding Flower Food

Flower food is a specially formulated solution designed to nourish and hydrate fresh-cut flowers, extending their vase life and keeping them looking their best for longer. It typically contains a simple combination of ingredients, including nutrients, biocides, and pH regulators, that work together to prevent contamination and provide essential hydration and nutrition.

One of the critical components of flower food is sugar, which replenishes the energy stores of flowers, allowing them to breathe and maintain their vitality. In addition to sugar, flower food often contains citric acid or another acidifier, which helps lower the water's pH and prevent the growth of bacteria. Other active ingredients in flower food help keep the stems free of clogs and bacteria that might hinder water uptake, leading to premature wilting.

By keeping the vase water clean and free of harmful microorganisms, flower food ensures that blossoms can absorb water and nourishment effectively, prolonging their lifespan and your enjoyment.

Using Flower Food Effectively

Now that we've explained the role of flower food in preserving fresh-cut flowers, let's explore some easy tips for using it effectively.

A glass bowl and wooden spoon hold white powder beside a clear glass of water on a pink surface, accompanied by small white cherry blossoms.

Follow the Instructions

Flower food typically comes in powder or liquid form and, most of the time, comes with fresh arrangements. Flower food can also be purchased at your local flower shop. Be sure to carefully read and follow the instructions provided on the packaging for the correct dosage and mixing ratio.

A hand holding a clear pitcher scrubs its interior with a white brush while being washed under running water in a stainless steel sink.

Clean the Vase & Rinse the Stems

Before sprinkling any flower food into the vase, it's essential to make sure it is clean and free of any debris or bacteria. If your bouquet came in a vase, dump out the old water, wash the vase with warm, soapy water, rinse it well, then dry it thoroughly to remove any residue and moisture. If you're placing a wrapped bouquet in a vase for the first time, wash and dry the vase in the same manner. In both cases, rinse the stems as well.

Hands hold a glass jar under running water from a faucet in a kitchen sink area with potted plants and a soap dispenser in the background.

Pour Water into the Vase

Once cleaned, add fresh, lukewarm water into the vase, leaving space at the top so it doesn't overfill. For wrapped bouquets, or if swapping out the original vase, avoid using metal containers, as they can react with the flower food and potentially harm the blooms.

A hand adds granular substance from a spoon into a water-filled bowl near red and yellow roses, with a vase and more flowers in the background.

Add the Flower Food

To prepare the flower food solution, simply dissolve the recommended amount of powder or liquid in lukewarm water. Stir the solution until the powder fully dissolves or the liquid evenly distributes.

Hands trim flower stems with pruning shears on a wooden table. Several blooming flowers and scattered leaves surround the area.

Trim the Stems

When you first receive a professionally designed arrangement in a vase, your florist will have already trimmed the stems, so they'll be ready for you to enjoy. However, you will want to trim them every few days for maximum bloom duration.

If you have received a wrapped bouquet, trim the stems straight away.

Using clean, sharp scissors or floral shears, cut the stems of your flowers at a 45-degree angle. This creates a larger surface area for water absorption and ensures the flowers can absorb the maximum amount of nutrition and hydration from the flower food. Trim your stems at an angle every few days.

Hands arrange a bouquet of flowers in a hexagonal glass vase filled with water, placed on a wooden table beside pruning shears and a white pitcher, with a blurred indoor background.

Place the Flowers into the Vase

Place your flowers into the vase, removing any leaves or foliage that might submerge in the water. It's also crucial to not overcrowd the vase so your stems have the space they need to thrive.

A person places a vibrant, multi-colored flower bouquet in a clear round vase on a small, circular black table in a brightly lit room.

Display Your Blooms

Display your beautiful vase of fresh flowers in a cool area of your home where you can admire them easily. Be mindful of drafty areas or places that receive direct sunlight, as these conditions may shorten the lifespan of your blooms.

A bouquet of pink, white, and magenta peonies arranged in a glass vase filled with water; set against a soft pink background.

Monitor the Water Level

Check the water level in the vase regularly and top it up with fresh flower food solution if instructed. Flowers absorb water at different rates, so filling the vase is vital to ensure continuous hydration. Change the water fully every 2-3 days.

Incorporating flower food into your floral care routine is a simple yet effective way to prolong the freshness and beauty of your flower arrangements. By providing essential nutrients, inhibiting bacterial growth, and promoting optimal hydration, flower food helps to ensure that your blooms look vibrant and stunning for as long as possible.

Click here for more information on how to properly care for fresh-cut flowers.