Flowers are a piece of heaven on earth. Their marvelous beauty is unique and unrepeatable. Each inflorescence enchants, and it does not matter whether it is a field blade of grass or a bud of an exotic plant. Bouquets decorate the house, please the eye, improve mood. Especially if the flowers were received as a gift from a person dear to the heart. But the life of cut flowers is short. How to save a tender gift for a longer period? Just! You can dry the bouquet, keeping it for a long memory. Before drying flowers, it is important to follow a few simple rules so that the end result will please.
Almost any flowers can be dried. But each type of plant requires certain conditions. Some dry well in the air, others require sand, and others can only be preserved under pressure. One thing remains unchanged: only fresh flowers can be dried. If the bouquet has stood in water for several days, then nothing will work. The buds will simply wither, losing their attractiveness.
Collect flowers for drying in dry weather. It is better to do this after 11 o'clock in the afternoon, when the dew is finallydried up, and the buds had time to open. For future dry bouquets, it is necessary to choose plants without defects, such as dry tips, spots on the petals and leaves. Flowers should be open, not fading.
If you want to keep the bouquet bought in the flower pavilion, then you should start this process immediately after the purchase. After all, these flowers have already come a long way from the nursery where they were grown to the buyer.
The easiest and most common way to dry plants is under pressure. Before drying the flowers for the herbarium, they must be straightened, given the desired shape. Volumetric flowers, such as peony, cannot be preserved in this way, but you can separate the petals. For such drying, an old book or a stack of read newspapers is suitable. Spread prepared plants between sheets of paper, cover with several more layers of paper and press down on top with a press. The thicker the layer of paper, the faster the herbarium will be ready. The paper absorbs the moisture released from the plants. To speed up the process, you need to change layers of paper. Drying of the herbarium occurs within a week, sometimes faster, depending on the humidity of the air and the thickness of the flower.
Finished products are flat, they are good for making panels, decorations using epoxy resin, postcards, candles and other decorative items.
To preserve the volume of flowers, a method such as a herbarium will not work. Hang drying can be used to formulate bulky compositions. Cansave cereals, wild flowers and some types of garden. This method is good for both the queen of the rose garden and for daisies, calendula, buttercups and other flowers.
The collected plants need to be cleaned from the lower leaves, make beautiful bunches, forming a future composition. Cut the stems at the same level. Plants of the same species should be collected in one bundle and tied with a thin rope. It is not necessary to strongly pinch the stems, otherwise they may break in the process, and the free passage of air will contribute to faster drying and shape retention. If the branches are fluffy and voluminous, then you can hang each one separately.
In a well-ventilated dark room, pull a rope or wire and hang the prepared bundles on it with clothespins. During the drying process, the plants should not be exposed to direct sunlight, otherwise the bright colors of delicate flowers will fade.
It is important to protect them from dust and ventilate them regularly. The procedure will last about two weeks depending on the type of plants.
This method is simple, does not require financial and time costs and is easily controlled. From the resulting beams you can make beautiful compositions. It is good to dry twigs with berries in this way.
Sand and cotton wool
To preserve the color and shape of the bud, you can place the flowers in sand, silica powder or cotton. How to dry flowers using these materials? Not difficult at all.
Unfortunately, only buds are dried in this way. stems neededcut, leaving a maximum of 3 cm (for roses up to 8 cm). In this way, you can save almost any flower - delicate lilies, bright gerberas, modest daisies and capricious peonies.
Sand must be prepared in advance. It must be clean (it is recommended to rinse), dry (can be ignited in the oven) and homogeneous (sift through a sieve).
Pour a layer of sand about 2 cm into the bottom of the cardboard box. Carefully spread the prepared buds so that they do not touch each other. Daisies and similar flowers should be placed with the bud down, but voluminous roses should be placed with their heads up. To properly dry the flowers, keep the shape, you should carefully sprinkle the buds with sand. You can pour it into a plastic bag, the top of which is tightly tied. In the lower corner, make a small hole through which sand will pour out in a thin stream, the layer of which should completely cover the buds and still cover a couple of centimeters to evenly distribute moisture. To speed up the process, the filler can be heated.
Put the box in a dry, well-ventilated place. The drying process will take from one to three weeks depending on the source material. You can control the process by slightly digging a layer of filler and checking for readiness. The finished flower looks like paper, and the petals do not break when touched. When the bud is ready, a hole should be made in the bottom of the box through which the contents are poured out. You can shake off the stuck grains of sand from the buds.
If you are interested,how to dry flowers in sand, you can also use the novelty of gardeners - silica gel. It can be purchased at home improvement stores. The usage process is the same as described above. Crystals can be used multiple times.
You can also use regular cotton wool. It perfectly absorbs moisture and retains the shape of delicate petals.
Paraffin is able to preserve almost all flowers. But this method is rather laborious. Melt the paraffin. With a small brush dipped in hot liquid, process each flower petal, making movements from the edge of the petal to the core of the bud. Wait until the workpiece dries. Everyone!
Any of the above methods deprive plants of moisture, making them brittle. But how to dry a bouquet of flowers and keep them elastic? There is a way - conservation in glycerin.
You can put small buds and twigs tightly in a beautiful transparent container and pour in a solution of glycerin, cork and leave in a conspicuous place. The finished art object is ready.
Ikebana takes a slightly different approach. Pour a solution consisting of one part of glycerin and two parts of hot water into the tray and put the buds and leaves there. It is worth noting that the stems cannot be saved in this way. Cover the top of the tray so that all plants are immersed in the working solution. After 3 days, the resulting blanks should be removed and blotted with a dry cloth, removing excess moisture. Flowers and leaves preserved in this way retain their color and elasticity. They can be safely used incomposing compositions. In addition, they acquire a glossy sheen. It is easy to experiment with such material, for example, by twisting the leaves into a spiral or giving them a different shape.
Sometimes you need to perform this operation urgently. For example, when in the evening the child remembered that in the morning he needed crafts to go to school from natural materials. But how to dry flowers quickly? You can use the microwave by scrolling the bud in it for half an hour. Or leave for an hour in the oven with the door ajar at 60 ° C. This method is definitely fast. But the blanks obtained in this way will be very fragile.
Having learned how to dry flowers, you can prepare suitable material for the season: buds, ears, leaves, twigs with berries, reed stalks and dried flowers. And then you can make original compositions. Such bouquets look beautiful in wicker baskets, wooden vases, clay planters. Dried flowers can be used in the design of wreaths and panels that will decorate the walls. Dry buds, tinted with gilded paint, will become an original decoration of the Christmas tree and the New Year's table. Lots of application possibilities.
Tips for Preserving a Dry Bouquet
It is important not only to know how to properly dry the flowers, but also how to store them later so that they retain their attractiveness for several years. Do not put the bouquet in a brightly lit place. When exposed to direct sunlight, the delicate petals are destroyed andcrumble. It is important that the room is regularly ventilated. Dry air is contraindicated not only for living plants, but also for dried ones.
Dust is the main enemy of dried plants. Because of it, they lose the brightness of colors. You can sprinkle the finished composition with hairspray - this will give fragile inflorescences hardness and shine. Another option is to place the ikebana under a glass jar.
Flowers are a creation of nature, and ikebana made from dried flowers is a creation of human hands.