Birthday Flower Bouquets
All will come in handy to create a diverse bouquet.The best time to cut flowers is early in the morning, before the dew has dried. This is when a plant contains the most water and its stems are full. The plants have spent the previous daylight hours manufacturing food for themselves and the blossoms will be filled with nutrients to help them survive in the vase. It’s best to take a pail of lukewarm water along with disinfected and sharp pruning shears into the garden.
Making the First Cut
First, clean off your chosen pail or vase with a mild solution of ammonia or white vinegar in water to get rid of any bacteria that has accumulated from your last bouquet. The general rule is to not cut tightly closed buds or mature flowers. Most flowers are best cut when the buds are half-open. Whenever possible cut the stem above a node so the plant will be able to send out a new shoot from the node. After you make your cut, plunge the cut flower into the warm water. It's even better to cut a second time under running tap water once you have the flowers in your house. Botanists swear this will make the flowers last longer. When flowers are out of water for even a short time, their stems seal off. Re-cutting them lets them draw up water again.It’s also best to cut stems on a slant so that the water conducting cells are in contact with water even when the ends are sitting on the bottom of a vase.
Flowers that bleed a milky sap or clear fluid bleed out nutrients that attract bacteria. With these flowers it is good to quickly dip the cut end of the stems into boiling hot water. Flowers that will last longer by being sealed in boiling hot water are campanulas, daffodils, hollyhocks, myosotis, hydrangeas, lantana, poppies, lobelia and dahlias.