How to properly care for cut peonies

Now that we are fully submerged in the beauty of peony season we thought there would be no better time to spill our florist secrets on how to properly care for peonies since these gorgeous flowers deserve all the care we can give them. From the moment you bring your beautiful peonies home you can start caring for them and extending their vase life by following this guide. 

Peonies from any reputable florist will be purchased in bud and wrapped in paper to protect them and get the most vase life out of them. This means that the care process can begin by carefully unwrapping their protecting paper, putting the flowers on a surface. 

You can then move onto trimming the stems which should be done with a sharp knife or scissors that you only use for flowers. Disinfect the tool before using with a small amount of bleach or washing up liquid then proceed to trim about an inch from the bottom of the stems. Always cut at a diagonal angle when trimming the stems so that they have a larger surface area to absorb water with. 

After trimming, you should check the stems for foliage or leaves that will likely fall below the waterline. By leaving these in the vase they will add bacteria to the water and cause the peonies vase life to shorten. The best way to get rid of the leaves is to either run your floral knife down the stem to remove the leaves or simply peel them off with your hands. 

Once this process is complete you should disinfect the vase you are planning on using to avoid bacteria growth which could cause the flowers to wilt. This can again be done with some bleach or washing up liquid before adding around three to four inches of room temperature water to the vase. Don’t forget the flower food as well which gives the flowers the extra nutrients they need. Our flower food comes in a powder form for easy storage which means you can use half the food on the first water change and the other half on the second. 

Before putting the peonies in waterway recommend wrapping the peonies back up in the protecting paper so that they stand in an upright position. This trick helps the flowers to hydrate better since the stems are straighter and will then cause the stems to stay upright in the vase avoiding drooping. After three to four hours the paper can be removed. 

Depending on the temperature of the room in your home the peonies are displayed in they will open at different rates. The warmer a room is the faster the peonies will open and the cooler a room is the slower they will open. This is useful to know since if you have bought them for a special occasion that you would like them open for you can use this trick.  

Maintenance for peonies as with most cut flowers isn’t difficult once the preparation is complete, they simply need the water topping up daily since they are quite heavy drinkers and changing every few days. You will also need to, as with all cut flowers trim the stems by a couple of centimetres every few days to extend their vase life. 

For more information on how to look after your flower bouquets or boxes take a look at our flower care guide or to order your peonies for local delivery across Manchester and Cheshire call 0161 202 9645. 

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