Keep Flowers Fresh

Cut Flower Preservative Recipes


You know if you put fresh cut flowers in water it will help keep them from wilting. If you have a packet of cut flower preservative from a florist or the store, it will help the flowers to stay fresh much longer. You can make cut flower preservative youself, however. There are several good recipes, made using common household ingredients.

Keys to Keeping Cut Flowers Fresh

Give them water.
Give them food.
Protect them from decay or infection.
Keep them cool and out of direct sunlight.

Cut the stems at an angle to increase the surface area for water and to prevent the ends from resting flat on the bottom of the container. In all cases, mix the floral preservative using warm water (38-40 C) because it will move into the stems more effectively than cold water. Clean tap water will work, but if it is very high in salts or fluorides, consider using distilled water instead. Chlorine in tap water is fine, since it acts as a natural disinfectant.

Cut Flower Preservative Recipe #1

  • 2 cups lemon-lime carbonated beverage (e.g., Sprite™ or 7-Up™)
  • 1/2 teaspoon household chlorine bleach
  • 2 cups warm water
Cut Flower Preservative Recipe #2
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon household chlorine bleach
  • 1 quart warm water
Cut Flower Preservative Recipe #3
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon household chlorine bleach
  • 1 quart warm water
More Tips
  • Trim away any foliage which would be below the water line. The wet leaves encourage microbial growth that can rot your flowers.
  • Remove any unnecessary leaves because they will accelerate dehydration of the flowers.