Cutting flower stems underwater adds life to the bloom!
The stem of a flower is the lifeline to a bloom. In humans, oxygen is needed for survival. In flowers, water is the sustenance. Water flowing through the stem is like blood in the veins of humans. When a stem is cut, the flow is interrupted. This can be reopened by cutting the flower stem underwater.
When a flower is cut, it is deprived of water. Imagine holding your breath underwater. When one comes up for air, there is a gasp to fill the lungs. Flowers also create a suction that quickly fills the stem. By cutting the stems underwater, the stems are filled with rejuvenating water-not air. Air bubbles in the stem of the flower decreases the longevity of the flower bloom.
After cutting the stem underwater, a vacuum is created that holds a water droplet on the end of the stem. This vacuum allows more water to race up to the bloom when the stem is placed in a bucket of warm water with floral preservative added. It additionally prevents air from entering the stem. This vacuum can revive a bloom that is deprived of water.
Roses are very plentiful, and in various stages.
Roses are available in many venues. They are also in different stages in the life of a bloom. Becoming aware of the different stages of a rose bloom can add longevity to an arrangement.
Roses can be cut in the early bloom stage. This occurs when the bud is tight and the center is very firm. When this happens, occasionally the bud will not open. In a later stage, the outer petals of the bloom begin to open with the center of the bloom still firm. As the rose begins to mature, the petals will open fuller.
How fast a bloom opens depends on the environment of its surroundings. Rose arrangements placed in direct sunlight, heat vents, or on heated surfaces will open faster. Arrangements in cooler environments, away from direct sunlight, will last longer.
Beer Cooler or Produce
Fresh flowers with the Beer Cooler or with Produce – Where do they last longer?
In the 1970’s, fresh cut flowers were introduced in grocery stores of the United States. Fresh cut flower are processed and displayed in containers of cold water. This water is usually treated with a flower preservative and at a temperature of about 37 degrees Fahrenheit. The flowers get their nutrients from this water. Flower cooler units were filled with fragrance and color.
Fresh flowers are in the produce department. That is where the grocers positioned them. No one told them, they are cutting the shelf of the blooms in half! Produce and citrus fruits give off ethylene gas. This gas is a plant hormone that regulates a plant’s growth and development. This is produced in the ripening process of the fruits and vegetables. Citrus fruits and lettuce produce higher amounts of ethylene gas. This can affect fresh cut flowers to mature. This cuts the longevity of the blooms significantly.
Recently, I visited a new grocery store. The beer was in a cooler the size of a large room. The room was filled with beer displays and stacked boxes of beer. The air was sharper. All the bottles and boxes were sealed.
In my opinion, the beer cooler would be a strategic place to cross-merchandise fresh flowers. The air around the flowers in the produce department contain ethylene gas. The air in the beer cooler does not contain ethylene gas.
An example of tulips illustrating Flower Arranging vs. Floral design!!
It has been a while since I have posted. My posting in the past have been about flower arrangement ideas and how to care for fresh flowers. COVID caught up with us! It made me slow down. I am able to collect my thoughts and present an updated program for Techniques4Flowers.
I want to move on to floral design. I’m not going to create classes for this, I am going to start by showing the different techniques I have used in the past to assist in floral design. I have started meeting with old friends in the floral business. They have given me the ideas I want to present to you. I will present them in the coming months. We are still working on that!
For this post to illustrate my argument, I want to present tulips. They are one of my favorite flowers! It also my way to demonstrate the difference between flower arranging and floral design.
In my opinion, flower arranging is placing floral blooms in a vase. If one loves flowers, a vase of blooms is always gorgeous. They will be delightful as long as they are healthy. A vase of tulip blooms, as in the left illustration above, is eye catching and always lovely. Once they begin to wilt, the enjoyment of the arrangement is lost.
Wikipedia defines floral design as “the art of using plant materials and flowers to create an eye-catching and balanced composition or display”. A floral design of tulips, as in the illustration on the right, is more controlled. The placement of each tulip is conceived to complete the picture designed by the circumstance. This example was a table centerpiece. Another example to use tulips may be in a hand bouquet. Those methods would be different to control the blooms.
There are many techniques used to produce an arrangement that make the work look effortless to produce. I see that constantly in the work of other floral designers, many amaze me.