Archive for September, 2011

My flowers just don’t last!!! Help!

Your local florist has access to flowers from all over the world. New varieties are constantly coming into the market place. Growers develop new hybrids, explorers find new species. It’s an amazing world.

As I understand it, here are some facts to keep in mind.  There are two ways to grow flowers:     1) hydroponically in a green house or 2) naturally in the ground. Roses grown in the ground in South America have the longest, sturdiest stems and last the longest. This is because nearer the equator the sun is more directly above head and strongest. Canada grows a great deal of floral material in green houses. The angle of the sun is greater there. Combine the two factors and you get weaker, more spindly stems.

And yes. This affects prices. The weaker material will be cheaper. Also, shipping charges are less when distances are shorter. Then, natural disasters must be taken into consideration. Too much rain, drought, too hot, too cold, a wind storm, a sudden insect infestation.  All of these factors affect the price you pay for flowers.

Grocery stores buy in large bulk packages, thus lowering their prices substantially. The stock that goes into these bulk packages is not of the highest quality. It won’t last as long.

A new hybrid or species in the market place can cause quite a stir. Florists are always looking for something unique to promote sales. This can really make an arrangement pop! At the research level, this new variety should have been monitored for strength and longevity before being mass marketed. The florist doesn’t have time to discover these qualities.

So where am I going with this? Don’t jump to a judgement on your florist if a particular flower dies in your arrangement. Take it out, replace it.   1) Make sure you are using the fertilizer from the little packet your florist included in your delivery. It kills bacteria as well as feeds the flowers. 2) Your water may affect the longevity of the flowers. Chemicals are harmful and flowers will pick up on this before your health does! 3) If you remove your flowers from the vase, the cells in the stems close immediately; therefore, they can not take up water. So make sure you cut off an inch of the stems before replacing in water – you have about 5 seconds!

If your arrangement is in floral foam do not let it dry out. Once it becomes dry it will not reabsorb water.  So the flowers die. Do not place your arrangement in the sun. If the days are unusually hot or your room temperature is too warm, the flowers will not last too long.

If you observed all of these considerations, your flowers are all dead after only a couple of days, call your florist and discuss the problem amicably. There will be a good reason for the wilting. If not, the arrangement should be replaced at no cost to you.