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Help Your Flowers Live Longer: Part 1- Water

So you just received a vase of beautiful flowers. You've decided on the perfect place to display them, moved a few things out of the way and... voila! They look amazing there. Now you don't have to do anything enjoy them until they're dead and done, right?

Well, sure. That's one way to do it. But you'll only get a few good days out of them like that. So if you'd rather they look lovely, smell lovely and stand tall as long as possible, there are a few things you can do to help them achieve their full potential.

This is part one of a two part series on helping your flowers live longer.

If your flowers are drooping, browning, drying out, or dropping petals and you're concerned over how short a life they had, it's very likely a problem with their water.''

So here are a few things to watch out for in the watery world of flowers.

1. How MUCH water is in the vase?

It sounds so elementary, but it's quite often overlooked.

I used to think that flowers only took in water at the bottom of their stem where they were cut. <Buzzer sound>. WRONG-O! Flowers actually drink in water through their entire stem. They do drink MORE water through the bottom, but hidden air bubbles or rot sometimes block the flow from the bottom, so be sure you're giving the whole stem ample watering opportunity.

Always keep your vase full

You should try to keep your vase 3/4 of the way full. That usually means topping it off every day. Just because they were cut from their roots doesn't mean they're dead. In fact, they'll be drinking You'd be surprised how much water those babies will gulp up, some varieties faster than others. If your vase is not clear, dip a finger in and feel the water line. If you can't feel the water line, it's definitely too low.

If your flowers were delivered to you or drove home with you in a vase, it's likely some water sloshed out during the journey. So it's even good to check the water level right as they arrive in your house.

2. Sunlight

Flowers need sunlight to grow, but honestly, once they're cut and fully open, too much sun will cause more damage than good. It evaporates their water as well as warms it. Warm water encourages bacteria growth faster than cold water. (But note that not every flower wants cold water, so room temperature is fine if you're not sure.) And if the sun is beating down too hot on your arrangement, those delicate petals will fry and dry.

This doesn't mean you need to hide all your flowers away in the bathroom or close the curtains to any room they pass through. But putting them on a sunny windowsill in the middle of summer won't be doing them any favors. Save that space for your potted flowers you're hoping to grow. A table in the center of the room or against a wall with no direct rays beating down on them will be just fine.

So there you have a few beginning tips on keeping your flowers alive longer.

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