How to have longer lasting quality roses?
Speaking for rose producers, it takes us roughly 90 days of hard work to produce the roses you get for your home or loved ones, yet I always hear the same complaints regarding longevity, sturdiness and quality. Initially, I believed that the roses my friends were purchasing were old flowers, but as I visited my friends’ homes and increased the amount of collaborative work with florists, I realized that this is caused by a lack of knowledge on how to maintain them. Therefore, my team and I decided to compile a few tips so you can enjoy your roses for many more days.
1. Cut them to make them last longer!
Every other day, or at most after two days, cut the roses an inch or two. The stems become obstructed and stop absorbing water with the same efficiency as they did before. It doesn’t matter if you cut your stems at a straight or slanted angle, as long as you cut them every other day. By doing this the flowers will remain hydrated for longer, keeping your roses looking beautiful for up to two-three weeks.
2. Change the water
Every other day, or at most after two days, change the water you keep your roses in. The water gets dirty and that affects the quality of the roses you have in the vase. This combined with tip one can gain you a few days of vase life easily. Ideally, you will change the water from the vase as you cut the stems every other day.
3. Watch out where you put them.
Do not, under any circumstance, place the roses in hot temperatures or under direct sunlight during summer. Place them where the sun can reach them but try to avoid direct sunlight. If you do place them in direct sunlight, the roses will dehydrate rapidly, causing them to bloom and whither faster. However, if you place them in the direct path of the AC, you will be able to keep them fresh for longer, because roses remain in better conditions for longer periods of times when kept at lower temperatures. This is why, since the moment the rose is cut to the day when your florist sets it on display, all roses are distributed under a strict cold supply chain.
Yes, you read that right. Viagra. This wonder pill not only works in humans but it’s useful for your roses too. If you need flowers to look wonderful, fresh, well hydrated and in mint conditions, throw in a pill in your rose vase. For 50 or more stems use half a pill of Viagra, for anything less, a quarter of a pill will do just fine. Why Viagra? Viagra increases the water flowing through the stems, allowing your roses to be better hydrated and to remain beautiful for a longer period of time. This works better than any packaged product you can purchase specifically for flowers.
5. Sugar and Clorox?
Cleaning products and sucrose? What must I be thinking? Yes, Clorox and sugar are actually helpful. Add ONE drop (only one) of Clorox with a teaspoon of sugar to a vase with water. Mix it and let it sit for a minute. Then add the roses to the vase. The Clorox will make sure that any dirt in the water is neutralized and the sugar will give your roses some extra energy to keep looking stunning.
6. Open Doesn’t Mean Old, It Means Better
I am not old enough to understand why American distributors are obsessed with extremely tight cut stages (meaning that we cut the rose when its bud is relatively closed) but I can tell you it is working against your wallet. This cut stage used to be popular at the beginning of the century. However, slowly but surely, that market has evolved and is now accepting more open roses. Roses that have 3-4 petals lose from the bud are at a perfect stage to be cut. This means that they have been able to develop for a longer period in the plant, obtaining more energy reserves and developing a bigger head size. Roses cut at this stage will last more than roses cut at what we call eraser or bullet cut stages. So don’t be afraid to give it a try, just make sure it is someone you trust, there are a lot of dishonest people in our industry.
7. Longer roses will last longer
Buy longer roses, it’s that simple. They have better energy reserves than shorter roses as they have thicker stems, bigger heads and more leaves. Also, if you buy longer roses you can repeat our first advice many more times, which means longer lasting roses.
8. Watch out for the leaves!
The last advice my team and I have for you is to watch out for the leaves. People often seem to neglect to prune them. As with any plant you should take out the damaged leaves or petals from your rose, that way any disease or decomposition process will be held back for as long as possible.
As you can see, maintaining roses is harder than what most people expect, but for what you are paying it is the least you can do. Making your roses last an extra 3-5 days is basically more than doubling your money’s worth! Imagine if they last 12-15 days! I personally have had roses last up to a month at home, which to be honest is quite a long time.