How To Keep Fresh Flowers Alive Longer, According To Florists

by John Griffith

Now that spring and summer are upon us, we’re surrounded with beautiful blooming flowers. So, like many of us, you too may be tempted to bring some inside of your home. And while this sounds like a brilliant idea and will help freshen up your living space, it’s really hard to do. This is mainly because fresh flowers can’t really survive long after they have been picked. However, there are some tricks that can prolong the period. If you’ve ever been to the flower shop you’ve probably wondered, how do the flowers always look so fresh and nice there, but once you bring them home, they’re gone in a day? Well, that’s because florists have some tricks up their sleeve. Today we will be taking a look at some of their secrets in order to find out how to keep fresh flowers alive longer.

Fresh flowers can’t really survive long after they have been picked

how to keep flowers fresh longer

How To Keep Fresh Flowers Alive Longer

Whether you’ve received a bouquet as a gift, or just decided to buy one, you’ve probably noticed that it usually comes with a little packet that states it can keep the flowers fresh for longer. These flower food packets are basically made up of three key ingredients – citric acid, sugar and bleach. So, if your flowers haven’t come with this sachet, or you picked them from your garden, here is what you can do with just common household products.

Flower food packets are made up of citric acid, sugar and bleach

keep flowers alive longer boquet of fresh flowers

Cut The Stems

Don’t be afraid to cut the flowers. Pruning the stems will help keep the flowers nice and fresh, as they will have more access to the clean water. You should prune them a little more once again after a couple of days. Keep in mind that the water should also always be clean. Make sure you prune the stems at a 45-degree angle and to cut at least an inch.

Prune your stems at a 45-degree angle

keep flowers alive longer florist pruning flower stems


Adding sugar to your water is the number one way to keep fresh flowers alive longer. Once a flower is picked, the leaves it can get its food from are quite limited, as well as the light available. This sweet substance helps provide them with required nourishment, which they cannot get now. You can add sugar as a part of other mixtures.

Sugar nourishes the plants 

white sugar being poured into a container

Keep It In The Fridge

The fridge isn’t only to keep your produce fresh, it’s also great for keeping your flowers fresh. Don’t worry, you don’t have to keep them in there the whole time, just during the night. During the day you can enjoy their beauty. Flowers enjoy cooler temperatures and such temperatures also help slow down their aging process.

Keep them in the fridge at night 

white vintage fridge with magnets and stickers

Copper Pennies

Your spare change may come in handy when it comes to keeping your flowers nice and pretty. Just plop a copper coin into your vase water alongside half a teaspoon of sugar. The copper will help prevent any bacteria growth as it acts like an acidifier.

Copper acts like an acidifier

flower hacks copper pennies in stacks


Not only is vodka great for making jello shots, it’s also a champion at keeping flowers alive longer. The number one killer of picked flowers is bacteria. Add some drops of vodka to the vase to help minimize the growth of bacteria. And make sure to add one teaspoon of sugar to provide the flowers with some nourishment. Once again, change up the water every few days.

You can use other clear spirits as well 

fresh flowers in a vase absolute vodka in a cloud


While you may be skeptic to add this chemical to your beautiful flowers, remember there is also bleach in the prepacked flower food packets. There are two versions you can do: add in just a quarter of a teaspoon of bleach to at least a liter of water or add in three drops bleach and one teaspoon sugar in a liter of water. Bleach like vodka has antibacterial properties.

Bleach can help keep flowers fresh 

bleach bottle on pink background

Fizzy Drinks

Split a fizzy drink, preferably soda or lemonade, with your bouquet. All you need to do is add around 1/4 of a cup to the fresh water inside the vase. Soda is full of sugar, which will help the blooming flowers survive longer.

Use soda or lemonade

tall glass of soda with ice and lemon slices

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a miracle liquid. It’s great for your health, it’s amazing at cleaning, and it’s super for keeping flowers fresh for longer. Here’s what you have to do. Mix around two tablespoons of vinegar with the same amount of sugar. Then add it to the vase water. After you’ve done that, you can add the flowers to the vase. Make sure to change up the mixture every few days.

Vinegar gets the job done 

apple cider vinegar bottle


This little pill is great for prolonging flower life. Just crush one aspirin pill in the vase water before adding your bouquet. And that’s it. However, like always make sure to change and refresh the mixture every couple of days.

Crush some aspirin in the water 

white aspirin pills

These were all the tips and ticks we have for you today on how to keep fresh flowers alive longer. Now you can enjoy your beautiful flowers for a prolonged period of time without having to worry they’ll wilt in a split second.

Enjoy your bouquet 

boquet of flowers in a vase

John Griffith

John Griffith is a young, passionate journalist. Writing has been John’s hobby ever since he was a boy. He has worked in some of the UK’s most successful news portals over the course of his professional career but found his forever home at Archzine.