Flower Care

Want to get maximum enjoyment from your bouquet of flowers? Chrysal and Floralife market products for extending flower life to both professional growers and consumers. When you buy a bouquet of flowers, it will often have one or two little sachets of powder for adding to the vase water attached to it. What is actually in these sachets? To answer this question, let’s think about what happens to a flower when it is put into water.

Firstly, it is important to consider that the flower has lost it roots and that it can therefore no longer absorb any specific nutritive salts. Normally, a complex process converts the nutritive salts absorbed by flowers into Sugar. So the powder contains Sugar!

Secondly, a cut flower will have been out of the water for at least a short period of time. As the evaporation process simply continues once a flower has been cut, the lower part of the stem contains air. Think of sucking on a straw in a glass that is almost empty – the effect is similair. This is why the florists advise you to cut a piece off of the flower’s stem. However, in order to make absolutely sure that there are no air bubbles left in the stem, a wetting agent is added to the powder. The wetting agent lowers the surface tension of the water, ensuring that it ‘flows’ more easily. Washing-up liquid has the same effect!

The third problem encountered by the flower is the water in the vase slowly getting dirty due to the encountered growth of bacteria and moulds. After a while, these bacteria and moulds block the vascular bundles in the flower’s stem, stopping water getting through. And this is why the powder also contains a disinfectant, usually a chlorine compound.

You can make your own preserving agent by adding the following to one litre of vase water.

  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • 2 drops of washing-up liquid
  • 1 ml (2 drops)of domestic bleach

It is also important that you:

-use warm water,
-cut off the ends of the stems at an angle
-do not position flowers in draughts, on top of radiators or in the sun.


written by Louise van der Ven – www.flowerxl.nl