Beating the January Blues
Fresh as a Daisy
Most of the cut flowers that you buy from Gardenia are guaranteed to stay fresh for 7 days, but show them some love and they could last even longer.
A little bit of effort up front means they’ll reward you with colour, scent and that lovely uplifting feeling that only flowers can bring for a whole week or more.
- Remove the packaging and tip any remaining water down the sink. Don’t throw away that little sachet of flower food though - you’ll need it later.
- Trim the stems at an angle. This increases the surface area of the stem to help it suck up water.
- Use a clean, non-metallic vase. Bacteria in a dirty vase will cause the water to go cloudy and smelly, so get it as pristine as you can. Most vases can go in the dishwasher (but don’t do this with antiques or delicate/painted vases, just to be on the safe side).
- Fill your vase three quarters full with fresh, cold tap water then pour in the flower food and mix with a wooden spoon. This helps to prolong the life of your flowers.
- Pull off any leaves that will sit below the water line and then lower the bouquet into the vase. Once it is in place you can snip the string that binds the stems together.
- Keep your arrangement in a cool spot away from direct sunlight and heat sources like open fires and radiators.
- Every 2-3 days, remove any dropping flowers and foliage, re-trim the stems and change the water to keep everything fresh.
Don’t be scared of houseplants. Most are really easy to look after, even if you consider yourself not very green-fingered. Here are our top tips:
- Keep the compost moist, but not soaking. A small watering can with a long, narrow spout is useful; or you can buy a little watering can ‘rose’ that fits onto a plastic water bottle from your local garden centre or online.
- Avoid draughts and direct sunlight. A cool, shady, sheltered spot is good.
- If your plant produces flowers, remove any that have faded or wilted to help it bloom for longer.
- During spring and summer, feed your plant fortnightly with liquid plant fertiliser.
- Got a phalaenopsis orchid? Lucky you. Check out our guide to caring for these gorgeous (if sensitive!) beauties.