What factors determine the vase life of flowers?
Flowers are one of mother nature’s most beautiful creations and we want to enjoy them as long as possible. But unfortunately, they don't last forever...
If you want to keep them fresh as long as possible, there are some factors that determine their vase life.
You might be surprised by what makes flowers wilt faster than expected – it isn’t always water or sunlight!
Understanding the conditions that affect flower longevity is essential if you want to get the most out of your bouquet. Let’s dive into all of the details so we can help prolong those gorgeous blooms!
The variety itself is a big predictor as well. Some flower varieties last only a few days while others easily last (with the right care) 2 or even 3 weeks. There is of course a maximum vase-life for every variety and type of flower but there are a couple of things one can do to prolong it as far as possible.
Growing conditions at the flower farms
Temperature, light exposure, relative humidity, and the fertilization of the flowers and plants all play a big role in how they grow and develop their buds in the fields, in the greenhouses, and later in their journey to the florists and their customers.
Some plants won't flower at all when they don't receive enough light while others need a special type of light to create optimal growing conditions. The temperature is very important since for some flowers and plants buds will only form at certain temperatures.
The stage at which the flowers are harvested matters. It is best for most flowers if they are picked before they are fully open to ensure a long bloom period when they arrive at the vendors. Additionally, flowers should be ideally picked in the morning or evening. Picking the flower in the middle of the heat makes that the flower is less capable to take up water in its stem.
Post-harvest and shipping circumstances
Specifically, the temperature and relative humidity play a major role as to in which condition the floral products are delivered to your florist shop or design studio.
Flowers are delicate and perishable goods and ideally, you want to receive them as fast as possible after they've been harvested from the fields!
High temperatures during shipping will encourage their development and too cold temperatures might freeze your flowers. We work together with FedEx to create the best shipping conditions for your farm-fresh flowers. Making sure that your boxes do not stand in the heat but also controlling for colder temperatures!
Another factor is the humidity during shipping. Especially wide fluctuations in the humidity, which promotes the growth of the fungus Botrytis, are not good for your fresh flowers.
The transportation time of your goods is super important for the vase life of your flowers! Since we ship cut flowers from all over the world, they have to travel great distances before they arrive at your front door.
That's why we've removed two steps from the original supply chain.
At classic wholesale florists, your flowers will be shipped from the grower to the importer, then to the wholesaler where you will pick them up.
The supply chain at your classic wholesaler
If you buy your flowers at iBuyFlowers.com your flowers will be shipped straight to you from the growers. This means that your flowers are on average 5 to 7 days fresher. Therefore they will last much longer than the flowers from your traditional wholesaler!
The supply chain of iBuyFlowers.com
When your wholesale flowers arrive at your florist shop or studio it's best to cut your flowers with clean tools. Everything that touches your flowers should be clean to prevent any bacterial contamination. Bleach is perfect to use when cleaning your tools and vases.
Refresh your water every 3-4 days and re-cut the stems about 1 inch each time. That will increase the final vase life.
There are also floral preservatives that will help prolong your flower's vase life. These preservatives often contain a biocide that kills bacteria.
One such product is quick-dip, which is a very popular product and used by most florists! Quick-dip is an instant hydration pretreatment that helps your flower stems maximize their solution uptake!