Above: Flowers received for Valentine’s Day can be kept fresh longer with a few tricks. Photos by Pixabay.

With Valentine’s Day comes candy, cards and flowers. Flowers arrangements are quite pricey this time of year, but a beautiful bouquet of fresh cut roses always says “I love you” to that special someone.

If you’ve received a gift of fresh flowers, you’ll want to get the most enjoyment out of your arrangement for the longest amount of time. Here are some helpful tips to keep the flowers around for more than just a few days:

  • For flowers not already in a vase:

    • Cut of ½ to 1 inch from the bottoms of the stems.
    • Place the flowers in warm water.
    • Add a couple drops of 7-up and a couple drops of chlorine bleach to the water.
  • For already-prepared bouquets:

    • Place the arrangement out of direct sunlight, away from heat sources, such as appliances and lights, and make sure it’s not under an air vent.
    • If possible, place the bouquet in the refrigerator at night.
    • Recut the stems every 3 days, change the water and add a preservative mixture of 7-up and chlorine bleach.

With proper care, you should be able to extend the life of your bouquet.

potted flower PixabayIf you like the idea of a fresh bouquet or arrangement, but don’t like short-lived cut flowers, ask your special someone to give you something that blooms, like a plant for your flower bed. Several landscape plants have pretty blooms that last for a month or longer. Some good options are hydrangeas, camellias, flowering bulbs and gardenias.

You might have to wait for the blossoms, but spring is right around the corner. Every season that the plant blooms, you’ll be reminded of this special Valentine’s Day gift from your loved one.

Sarah E. Brodd is a Natural Resource Agent for UGA Extension in DeKalb County.