How to make cut roses last longer


Did you know that it's possible to make your beautiful cut roses last for up to a week longer? Our favorite flower gal, Rebecca Cole shares a few simple tricks of the trade on how to condition roses.

How to make cut roses last longer

When you bring home roses, before you arrange a bouquet, they need to spend an hour being conditioned. It may sound like a lot of work, but you will be able to enjoy your roses for a week longer.

  1. Start with a clean container of water. Add half a packet of flower freshener and save the other half for a refresh later in the week.
  2. Remove excess leaves and thorns. You can get rid of extra leaves and thorns with a device called a rose stripper.  You simply place it on the stem and then sweep down, cutting off the leaves and thorns as you travel down the stem.  You can also do this with a sharp pocket knife, by gently cutting away the excess leaves and thorns.
  3. Cut the stem with a knife to create a sharp diagonal cut.  The more exposed the stem is by the diagonal cut, the more water can get in to travel up the stem to nourish the bloom. 
  4. Place the stems in the conditioned water.  Leave them there for a full hour.  Then, you can begin making your arrangement.  
  5. After a few days, change the water, add the other half of the flower freshener and cut the stems again.


Transcript  Hi, I’m floral designer Rebecca Cole for Now if you get a beautiful bouquet for Valentine’s Day here’s how to make those flowers last a whole lot longer. They definitely need a drink as soon as they arrive home, so you must get them in water. If they are in water, add more. So what do we need? We need a clean vase; we need fresh cool water. Most flowers are going to come with a flower freshener packet. We just take that packet, open it up, and put half of it into your vase because we want to save the other half for a couple of days later when we’re going to change the water. Now if they came in a box, they’re going to come like this, which means there’s a little plug at the bottom that’s holding water, but we really need to put this in its own vase and make a nice, fresh cut. So first I’m actually going to take some of the leaves off because I don’t want any leaves underwater. I’m going to make a shorter cut now into the stem. Take a knife and just put the flat side of the knife onto your stem and do a little, gentle kind of scrapping and you’re going to be able to take all those little thorns off. Now I’ll take off my little plug. So I’m going to make it much shorter and I want a really big angled cut. You want to have plenty of area that the water’s going to be able to drink into that stem. And then place that in your fresh water. Repeat this with all of your flowers. You want to have them all in water even before you arrange them. Have them drinking for at least one hour. Now if you didn’t do this your flowers are only going to last you a couple of days. If you do do this you could get them to last as long as ten days sometimes. The way to do that is to repeat this process every couple days. Fresh new water, the other half of the flower packet, sometimes you’re going to get to put that in again. And then do another fresh cut. Make sure you place them in a cool, dry space. Don’t let any sunlight hit them and don’t put them near a heater. I’m Rebecca Cole from 
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  • Rebecca Cole

    Rebecca Cole Floral and Interior Designer Rebecca Cole is now one of the most in-demand interior and landscape designers in the country and has been declared a 'stylish, urban horticulturist' by New York Magazine and a 'garden guru' by the New York Post. more about this expert »

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