We love bouquets, especially when they’re fashioned with lovely, pillowy hydrangea flowers. What happens if the cut hydrangeas in your arrangement begin to wilt and don’t appear to be as cheerful as they once were? You have the power to resurrect them!
Hydrangeas: How to Rejuvenate Them
These tips will help you prolong the life of your hydrangeas by three to five days.
First and foremost, give them a soak.
Bailey Hale, co-owner and floral operations manager of Ardelia Farm & Co. in Irasburg, Vermont, spoke with us. His suggestion for reviving fading hydrangea blooms? Soak them in water, blossoms and all. “Soak the blossoms for 30 to 40 minutes in warmish water,” he suggests.
Why? Hydrangeas take in water through the flower petals as well as the stems, according to Hale. Submerging your cut hydrangea allows the flowers to absorb a lot of water and rehydrate.
The second trick is to cut the stems.
Hale also recommends trimming the stems. Many people are aware that cutting flower stems short helps bouquets live longer, but Hale believes there’s more to it: “The longer the stem, the more difficult it is for water to reach the flowers.”
Trim the stems to a shorter length, and then make a criss-cross slice up into the stems to aid in water absorption. He does not propose crushing the stems, as is sometimes done with woodier stemmed flowers like lilacs. “If the stems are broken, the vascular tissues that take in water will be harmed,” he says.
Make your flower arrangement look big and lush by using this tape trick.
Use Boiling Water as a Trick No. 3
Hydrangeas produce a sort of sap on their cut stems, which might hinder a consistent supply of water to the flowers, causing them to droop. Bring a pot of water to a boil in a kettle. Fill a container halfway with boiling water. Remove the wilted hydrangeas and re-cut the stems at a 45-degree angle. Make a vertical slit in the incision and immerse the stem for about 60 seconds in hot water. Replacing the hydrangeas in your floral arrangement should bring them back to life in about one hour.
Don’t forget to check out our expert flower-arranging advice!
Recommendations for Your Next Bouquet
Hale’s final piece of advice is for your next bouquet of hydrangeas from your garden. He advises against cutting hydrangea blossoms too young. When flowers have a lot of moisture in their petals, this is when they are at their best. Your hydrangea blooms will stay much longer in your bouquet if you wait until they have a papery or even “leathery” feel to them.