Here are a few tried and true tips for keeping cut hydrangeas from wilting so they last longer. And one tip to revive wilted hydrangeas that works every time.
The hydrangeas in my garden are starting to grow like weeds. Soon it will be time to cut them and bring them inside! Whether you pick garden hydrangeas or buy them at the store, they can be the diva of your home decor. However, like any diva, they can be finicky! And they tend to wilt! Today let’s talk about how to keep cut hydrangeas from wilting. They are such beautiful flowers, but their heads tend to get droopy without proper care! I have a few easy fixes to keep cut hydrangeas fresh for a long time…
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Hydrangeas are the quintessential romantic summer bloom!!! Their big, moppy heads and little clusters of flowerets are iconic!!!
A big bouquet of them cut and arranged on a table is pure bliss! Yes, hydrangeas are one of the best-loved flowers around! But like many things, these dramatic beauties can be a little bit of a diva! Cut hydrangeas wilt quickly when brought into the house. And there is nothing pretty about droopy hydrangeas!
Here are a few ways to guarantee full, long-lasting cut hydrangeas!
Cutting hydrangeas during their growing season is far different than cutting them at the end of their season when they are papery and really don’t need water to stay beautiful. Here are a few great tips for having fresh-cut hydrangeas in your home all summer long!
Put Hydrangeas In Water Immediately After Cutting
Knowing how to take care of cut hydrangeas from the minute they leave the stem helps to keep them fresh longer.
Take a container of water with you when you cut hydrangeas.
As soon as hydrangeas are cut, the stems should immediately be put into tepid water. And adding a little bit of flower food to it would be a great idea too. Use a sharp knife or clippers to cut each stem on a diagonal and submerge!
Cut hydrangeas in the morning and choose only the most mature blooms. They will look a little more papery than others.
Preparing The Water
Use clean, room-temperature water for cut hydrangeas. If you have floral preservatives, use them too. You can find a good cut flower preservative HERE.
Strip The Leaves Off Hydrangeas
When you bring hydrangeas inside, make sure you strip off the leaves from each hydrangea stem.
I break this rule often, and I shouldn’t! The leaves are big water drinkers and will steal moisture from the blooms. At least, strip off most of the leaves. Those that are below the water line should absolutely be removed!
Cut And Smash The Stems
Cut the hydrangea stems to the desired length. Smash the very bottom of them to allow more water to travel up the stems and feed the blooms. I use a wooden meat mallet to crush the ends of the hydrangeas I bring inside.
There is some controversy about smashing the ends of hydrangeas. I find it does work well if I use the boiling water method. See below.
You can also cut the bottom of each stem on the diagonal and then make a cut up each stem instead of smashing it.
Use The Boiling Water Method
Yes, boiling water! Hydrangeas produce a “sap” that clogs their stems and blocks water from traveling up it to those gorgeous blooms. The boiling water helps to do away with the sap.
Put boiling water into a cup. Dip each stem into the boiling water for 30 seconds and immediately put them into a vase or container filled with room temperature water.
Dip Stems In Alum Powder
You can also keep cut hydrangeas from wilting by using alum powder. Dip the stems into alum and put them into a clean vase. Make sure to mark the alum container “for hydrangeas only,” as you do not want to use it for anything else.
You can find alum in the spice aisle of your local grocers or HERE.
Replace The Water Every Other Day
Replacing the water in the vase or containers that hold hydrangeas will keep them fresher longer! Also, give hydrangeas a fresh cut and dip them in boiling water or alum before putting them in clean water!
Emergency Care For Hydrangeas
I use this tip on all the hydrangeas I cut and bring into our home. It literally brings hydrangeas back to life.
Hydrangeas are notorious for wilting. Their blooms get dehydrated, and when this happens, most of us throw our hydrangeas away. Here’s a way to give them a second life!
If hydrangea blooms start to prematurely wilt, you can submerge the whole flower in a “bath” of water for about 45 minutes. If the hydrangea heads float, put something like a plate on top of the. They must be totally submerged.
Then recut and place the stems into boiling water and then back into a vase of fresh water. They should revive in a couple of hours and live another day or two or three.
It takes a little extra care to have a big beautiful bouquet of hydrangeas gracing your home, but it is so worth it!
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