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A Guide to Preserved Flowers – Six Things You Need to Know

The act of giving or displaying flowers is almost always connected to a special occasion or memory, like an anniversary or a wedding. Preserved flowers allow you to enjoy these special mementos for a longer period of time. Because of their natural look and long shelf-life, these flowers have become a favourite amongst brides to be, and a staple piece in home décor arrangements.

However, preserved flowers do require different types of care to ensure they last. Here are six things you need to know about these trendy botanicals.

1. Which flowers are the best to preserve? 

Although most flowers can be preserved, sturdier flowers do achieve better results. The best flowers to preserve include:

  • Roses 
  • Gerberas 
  • Chrysanthemums 
  • Daisies
  • Carnations
  • Peruvian lilies
  • Billy buttons (Craspedia billy balls)
  • Cymbidium orchids.

2. How long do preserved flowers last?

If they are cared for correctly, preserved flowers can last for a year and, in some cases, up to 35 years. The length of time that preserved flowers last for depends on the different methods used to display them.

Open-air display

If the preserved flowers are displayed in an open-air box or vase, the shelf-life of the flowers will be between 1-3 years. 

Glass display

If you decide to store your flowers in a sealed display, they will last between 1-35 years. If you wish for your preserved flowers to last longer the best option is to get the preserving process done by a professional florist and not to do it as a DIY project. This is because most professional florists will have access to the best equipment and chemicals needed to make the flowers last longer.   

3. What are the different display options to store your preserved flowers in?

There are countless crafty and creative ways to display your preserved flowers. Here are some of our favourites:

  • A box or vase
  • A picture frame
  • Enclosed glass terrarium
  • An epoxy resin mould 

4. How do you take care of preserved flowers?

To make sure that your flowers retain their beauty and maximum shelf-life there are a few steps that you must take to ensure they last. Here are a few tips on how to keep your preserved florals looking fresh and natural:

  • Do not water or spray perfume on them. Even if they look alive, they are not, and this can cause damage to the flowers.
  • Keep them out of direct sunlight and away from bright lights as this may cause the flowers to fade.
  • Keep them out of humid rooms and away from ventilation grilles.
  • Do not press, bend, or squash the petals or stems as they are delicate. The natural oils in your hands can damage the flowers and shorten their shelf-life.
  • If your preserved flowers are displayed in a glass frame or case do not attempt to take them out of the case once it is sealed. If the seal is broken this can cause the deterioration process to speed up.

5. How do you clean preserved flowers?

If you have an open-air arrangement cleaning them can be a little tricky, however, you do have a few options.

  • Spray compressed air (the kind sold to clean electronics) onto dried flowers to eliminate dust. The spray comes out fast, so make sure the can is not too close to the flowers.
  • Use a hairdryer. When using it set it on the lowest speed and “no heat” to avoid damage to the flowers.
  • Dust your dried flowers with a feather duster. This method will work best on sturdier arrangements.

6. Do preserved flowers smell? 

During the preservation process, the natural scent of the flower is taken away. No preserved flower will have the original scent that nature gave it. Most florists will add scents after the preservation process to give the flowers back their wonderful fragrance.

If you wish to give your preserved flowers a scent do not spray them with perfume as this can damage the flowers. Instead, you can place a few droplets of essential oils at the bottom of the box or vase to make it seem like the preserved flowers have a scent again.

For more information on preserved flowers browse our other Koch Blog articles What Are The Main Differences Between Dried & Preserved Flowers? and for more information on dried flowers browse our Guide to Dried Flowers

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