Recycling and extending the life of your flowers


IMG_5389I like to get the most of my flowers, in a mixed vase you may find that some blooms last longer than others – rather than throw everything away look at what can be reused.  I was able to reuse the Carthamus from last weeks “Sunshine vase”, so just bought a bunch of Gladioli in the same orange to replace the Sunflowers.  I chose a narrower tapered vase to hold the stems in a fairly upright position.  The orange flowers would also look good contrasted with the dark purple or maroon Gladioli that are also easy to find and very inexpensive.  Of course as the gladioli flowers open there will be even more colour in the design to look forward to.

One of the Sunflower heads from last week also was cut down and re-displayed in a chunky glass cube.


How to Create

Look through your flowers from last week, most of my Sunflowers were losing their petals so had to go in the recycling, but I saved one Sunflower and all the Carthamus.  Some of the Carthamus blooms were shriveled so I cut these off and removed any dried up leaves.  I cut the Carthamus slightly shorter so the lowest flower was just above the top of the vase, then filled the vase with these.  Holding up the Gladioli to the vase to judge the height I needed, I cut the ends on the diagonal, get rid of any loose lower leaves.  Using the Carthamus as a support I was able to thread through the Gladioli stems where I wanted them, the natural curve looking best pointing outwards.  I diluted the flower food (I needed a litre for this vase) and added to the vase.

Notes on Gladioli

Gladiolus should last for 6-10 days in a vase.  When buying Gladiolus check that some of the lower buds show some of the colour, otherwise the flowers may not ever open. Gladiolus will grow towards the light so from time to time turn your vase.  Check the water level regularly as Gladioli need plenty of water.


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