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Roses In Vase: 7 Tips For Fresher And Longer-Lasting Roses

Roses are popular flowers, perfect for all occasions. The traditional red rose may be a prominent fixture on Valentine's Day, but it's also ideal for graduation gifts, housewarming presents, and many more.

So if you find yourself on the receiving end of roses in a vase, you're probably thinking of ways to extend its shelf life. With all their beauty, rich colour, and fragrance, roses in a vase need some tender loving care to last longer.

Below are a few simple tips to ensure your roses stay elegant at home. Check them out!

1. Choose A Dark-Coloured Vase

When someone gives you roses, they'll typically come wrapped in a bouquet. But to keep them fresh, you must transfer them to a water-filled vase as soon as possible. 

Cut roses can only last for a few days up to a week. Anything beyond that, and they begin to wilt.

So, the first thing you need to do is to choose the right type of vase for your rose bouquet. In the past, you were probably used to transferring your roses in a clear glass vase. It's aesthetically pleasing and allows easy observation of your flowers.

However, we strongly suggest opting out of the glass vase. Use a dark-coloured or ceramic vase instead. This will protect the stems and petals from premature decaying. Also, place the vase in a visible area away from direct sunlight.

2. Clean The Vase

After choosing a vase, you'll immediately want to transfer the bouquet to it. But hold your horses! If the vase hasn't been used in a while and has gathered too much dust, you might want to clean it.

You'll want to rid the vase of bacteria that could potentially speed up the rose's ageing. Start by placing your vase under running water. Lather it in mild soap using a small towel, ensuring all areas are clean.

Next, dry the flower vase and rub a small amount of salt and vinegar paste. Simply mix 1/2 tablespoon salt with vinegar and stir until it reaches a paste-like consistency. Let it sit for 10 minutes, then rinse it to remove the odour.

3. Cut The Stems

 white roses in a vase

Before placing your roses in a vase, you'll want to trim at least an inch from the end of the stem. Cut the stem at a 45-degree angle. 

Doing this allows your rose to absorb water and other essential nutrients it needs to thrive in a vase.

Prepare your vase beforehand and fill it until it is 75% full of lukewarm water or just before the water reaches the opening. Immediately place your cut roses in the vase, as they don't last long when exposed to the air.

Make sure to use distilled water. This is because mineral water contains salts and other substances which can potentially hamper plant growth.

4. Avoid Using Cold Or Hot Water

As mentioned, try using lukewarm water for your roses in a vase. Too cold or too hot water can "shock" the roses and prevent them from effectively absorbing nutrients in the vase.

Cold or ice water can cause air pockets to develop on the cut stems. This will block the roses from receiving all the ample nutrients they need.

Meanwhile, hot water can destroy the flower. It may be effective in removing air pockets, but its temperature encourages the growth of bacteria, not to mention the destruction of its stem tissue. Also, the heat may cause the petals to shed much faster than in lukewarm water.

5. Add Flower Food

If you've ever received or gifted someone with a bouquet of red roses in the past, you may have noticed a small packet that came with it. This small packet contains "flower food, " or everything the cut roses need to survive longer.

Store-bought roses usually have pre-added flower food, but you can also create your own using simple household ingredients.

Most flower food contains three main ingredients: bleach, citric acid, and sugar. You'll also need sugar and lemon/lime juice.

Mix these in a small bowl until the mixture appears clear or translucent:

  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of bleach
  • 2 teaspoons of lemon/lime juice

Then, add the homemade flower food mixture to your vase. Stir well. The water in the vase should look a bit murky but still visible.

6. Change The Water Regularly

When it comes to roses in a vase or any other flower, you'll want to change the water every two to three days.

The original water tends to accumulate dirt and bacteria over time. It's best to replace it regularly to give your roses clean and fresh water to work with.

While changing the water, you may also want to cut off another half-inch of the stem and remove any extra leaves that may have fallen into the water.

7. Properly Arrange The Roses In A Vase

flowers and roses in a vase

Taking care of your freshly-cut roses is one thing, but displaying and showcasing their beauty is another. After you've mastered the art of caring for your roses, it's time to arrange them in a vase.

For store-bought roses, you must first remove the floral tubes. Get rid of any wilted petals or damaged leaves from the stem.

Then, pick the tallest rose among your selection. This will serve as the rose arrangement's centrepiece. It also adds aesthetic appeal by creating a focal point.

Then, feel free to get other tall stemmed roses from your bouquet. You're free to choose any coloured rose. For instance, you could go all out and use purely red roses for your vase.

Or, you could add a bit of flair. Your red roses will perfectly complement white and pink roses as well. Elevate your vase's look by adding other flowers, such as tulips, peonies, and lavenders. Cut off a portion of the stem so they'll stand shorter than your rose centrepiece.

Most flower vases have a 3-inch diameter opening. They could fit up to 25 flowers, but you could go with less if preferred.

Once your rose arrangement is complete, find a cool and dry area to place the vase. Set it on the middle of your dining table, on a kitchen countertop, or even on a bedside table.

Conclusion About Rose In Vase

Ever received a gift of roses from a friend or significant other? The best way to keep it fresh and preserve its memory is by arranging them in a vase. 

Follow all the tips featured in this guide, and you'll have a stunning rose vase arrangement in no time at all.

Need more floral guides and style inspirations? Check out our articles on friendship flowers and housewarming gift ideas!

Shop only fresh flowers only from Windflower Florist! We're a one-stop online flower shop in Singapore offering flowers for different occasions. Graduation, anniversary, Valentine's, or thank you flowers — we've got the freshest blooms to make any special someone smile.

Frequently Asked Questions About Rose In Vase

Do Roses In A Vase Need Sunlight Exposure?

No, roses don't need sunlight once placed in a vase. The best way to keep these and other flowers fresh is to put them in a cool, dry place, free from direct sunlight.

How Often Should I Use Flower Food?

Use flower food at least every three days. If using homemade flower food which contains bleach, wear gloves and protective eyewear to prevent irritation.

How Do I Keep Roses Fresh Overnight?

The best way to keep your roses fresh overnight is to place them inside the fridge. Remember to keep the roses away from fruits like bananas and tomatoes. These fruits release high levels of ethylene that can speed up the wilting of your roses.

How Tall Should A Vase Be For Roses?

Your rose stems shouldn't be more than 1.5 times your vase's height. For example, long-stemmed roses around 51 centimetres tall should be placed in 25-33-centimetre vases.


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