We know that you plan to preserve your flowers for a reason. Perhaps, you were touched by the flowers you received, want to show them off, or have an altogether different reason.
Whatever it is, we truly think that this is a great idea. So, if you want to learn how to do that, today’s your lucky day, as we wrote this guide for you.
Here, we will discuss the various drying methods you can use depending on the flower type and result you’re going for.
Keep reading to know them!
Steps for Air-Drying Flowers
Air drying is a standard method of preserving flowers. It involves the person hanging the flowers vertically to retain their form and remove excess moisture that can lead to mold and mildew growth.
Flowers that generally suit this method include hardy ones like roses, gypsophila, celosia, statice, thistle, among other blossoms.
So, here are the steps to take for air-drying your flowers:
- Take out the excess foliage of the flowers.
- Cut the stems to your preferred length, but the stem should at least be six inches long afterward.
- Flower bunches should be tied with a twine or rubber band.
- Suspend the flowers using the same or different twine in a dry and dark environment. They should be kept away from sunlight to keep their colors from fading.
- Wait for two to three weeks for the drying process to finish.
- After that, take down the blooms and spray them with hairspray. This will effectively preserve them even when moved around as well as their colors.
Steps for Microwave Pressing
If you want a faster preservation process, microwave pressing your flowers may be a better option for you.
For this, you would need silica gel which can be bought from a hardware store or supermarket. The desiccant functions to keep the blooms dry and help them keep their color and form.
Note that you can use silica gel alone in preserving the flowers, but it will take you longer. Because you likely have a microwave at home, it’s more practical to use it for your valuable flowers.
By the way, flowers made for microwave-pressing include roses, tulips, chrysanthemums, and daisies.
Now, follow the steps below for microwave-pressing your flowers:
- Separate the flowers from the stems.
- Find an appropriate-sized microwave-safe container. Bear in mind that you can’t use it for placing food items after the flower-drying process since it will become toxic.
- Once you’ve found a microwavable case or box, fill it with an inch of silica gel or more for bigger flowers. Now, transfer the stemless flowers face up in the container.
- Before closing the box, pour more silica gel over the blossoms so their petals won’t be flattened. It’s like a filler in between the flowers’ petals.
- Keep the drying container open and place it now in the microwave.
- In general, microwave heating should be set on low and the time should be adjusted from 2 to 5 minutes. Inspect the flowers from the outside of the microwave and see if you have to increase the time or heat to allow them to dry completely.
- Pull out the plug on your microwave for safety and then open it. With a mitt, take the container by its side and cover it with a lid, but leave it a little open for ventilation.
- Wait 24 hours to complete the process.
- Remove each blossom carefully while brushing off the silica gel away from it.
- Mist the flowers with acrylic spray to protect them from the sun and other damaging factors like heat and moisture.
- Remember to keep or display them in a cool location away from the sun and window.
Steps for Pressing Flowers in a Book
Alternatively, you can press flowers in a book.
This method is quick and easy to do and has been used by flower enthusiasts and botanists for a long time to study them, keep for their own, or include them in their letters.
Almost any flowers can be pressed with a book, but the result will be that they are heavily flattened, unlike with the other two drying methods discussed.
So here are the steps you can follow for drying flowers using a book:
- Strip unwanted leaves from the flowers to keep them neat. However, if you want to keep the leaves, you can just press them separately.
- Choose a book that’s big enough to press your flowers. We suggest using a heavy book like an encyclopedia or dictionary for great results.
- After doing so, open the book to about a quarter way or halfway.
- Include absorbent paper between the pages and under the flowers to protect the book from dyes or dirt. These papers include card stock and watercolor sheets.
- Lay the blooms on the parchment paper. On top of it, cap it with another absorbent paper.
- Close the book carefully.
- Top the book with a stack of books to press harder on the flowers.
- Keep the book in a safe place and wait for 3 to 4 weeks for the drying process to be completed.