You’re lacking out should you haven’t tried drying your home-grown flowers but. They might solely final every week or two in a vase when lower contemporary, however when dried and preserved, they’ll final months and even years, permitting you to benefit from the fruits of your labor nicely past the season.
Relying on your chosen flowers and what you need to use them for, there are a number of drying strategies to strive. Some are additionally extra expensive than others however usually ship higher outcomes. Weigh up your choices to determine which of those strategies works greatest for you, or higher but, strive all of them for your self.
When you’ve completed drying your flowers, you should utilize Modge Podge, spray sealant, and even hairspray to increase their lifespan or show or use them as they’re.
If you wish to protect your backyard blooms to make use of in dried flower bouquets, air drying is the strategy to decide on.
This is without doubt one of the most typical drying strategies for each effectiveness and accessibility. You don’t want fancy devices or costly merchandise – only a dry and darkish room to hold your blooms.
Air drying retains the stems intact, excellent for standing up in a vase or including to different preparations. It does take a number of weeks for the flowers to dry fully, however it preserves colour and form nicely, making it well worth the wait in comparison with faster however much less efficient strategies.
It’s greatest to select blooms with skinny petals and low moisture content material, together with within the stems. Increased moisture ranges imply they may take for much longer to dry out and will rot earlier than they’ll dry successfully.
Hydrangea, lavender, and strawflowers are nice choices for air drying. It’s additionally nice for maintaining extra delicate sorts, like roses, intact should you don’t plan to take away the petals for issues like potpourri.
How To Air Dry
Profitable air drying begins with choosing the flowers on the proper time. Some are greatest picked early for the strongest colour, whereas others should open totally to enhance form and drying time. It’s usually higher to choose earlier somewhat than later to cease them from browning.
Trim an extended sufficient part of the stem to make hanging a breeze. Bunch them collectively and tie the stems with string or a rubber band. Then, cling them the other way up to maintain the stems sturdy and the flowers upright.
The room you cling in ought to be dry and darkish. This helps protect colour and pace up the drying course of. Preserve them far-off from direct daylight, which can rapidly flip the petals brown.
The time it takes for the blooms to fully dry will rely upon the categories and the time you narrow them. On common, you’ll be able to take them down and use them after about two to 4 weeks.
Silica gel delivers even higher outcomes than air drying, with much less lack of petals or total blooms. It does require just a few extra instruments to get began, however should you plan on often drying or are preserving a particular bouquet (like your wedding ceremony bouquet), that is the route I might go for.
Silica gel absorbs moisture from the petals over time, drying them with minimal colour and form change. It’s the identical substance from the small packages used to maintain objects like baggage or footwear dry throughout transportation and storage, simply on a bigger scale.
So long as you’ve gotten sufficient silica gel to cowl the flowers you need to dry, you should utilize this methodology with any blooms from the backyard. It’s best for brighter blooms with vibrant colours you need to protect.
Sadly, silica gel will be dear. It’s probably the most costly strategies on this listing (bar the home equipment should you don’t have them already). You could additionally put on a masks when coping with the gel to forestall inhalation. However it’s price a strive should you’re keen to get previous these cons.
With the assistance of a microwave, you too can flip this into the quickest drying methodology obtainable, however that step is non-compulsory.
How To Dry With Silica Gel
To get began, you’ll want an hermetic container, a masks and gloves, a paintbrush, and sufficient silica gel to cowl your chosen blooms. Trim early within the morning to protect the form of the flowers, drying off any moisture gently with a paper towel.
Put your masks and gloves on earlier than opening the silica gel packet. Fill the underside of your container with a layer of silica gel, putting the flowers gently on high. Use a brush to mud extra silica gel across the petals and within the middle of the flower till it’s evenly however fully coated.
Seal the container and go away for just a few days to permit the petals to dry out. Thinner blooms will solely take two or three days, whereas dense blooms like zinnias want a bit of extra time to dry out fully. Pull them out if you’re achieved, and gently mud off any extra gel earlier than displaying.
To scale back the drying time from just a few days to minutes, you too can place the container within the microwave (so long as it’s microwave-safe). Preserve the lid off and warmth within the microwave for one to 2 minutes. Watch out when eradicating because the silica gel will probably be sizzling. Nonetheless, it’s greatest to err on the aspect of much less time than extra, as you’re not making an attempt to prepare dinner your flowers!
For individuals who don’t need to fork out the cash for dear silica gel, you too can use sand to dry your flowers equally. The sand absorbs a few of the extra moisture within the petals, though it does take longer for them to dry this fashion. You can even use a clay-type kitty litter should you don’t have coarse sand.
Whereas it’s cheaper, drying in sand delivers combined outcomes. Sand is kind of heavy and might harm the form of the flower or take away a few of the petals, particularly if you’re making an attempt to take away them from the sand.
The drying usually seems uneven, and the colour isn’t as well-preserved as it could be with silica gel. However it’s nonetheless barely quicker than air-drying and doesn’t price a lot if you have already got sand accessible to you.
Keep away from utilizing blooms with very delicate petals utilizing this methodology, as they are going to be simply pulled off. Bigger varieties with dense petals, like dahlias, work higher than delicate ones like hydrangeas.
How To Dry With Sand
The method is similar as drying in silica gel. Place a layer of sand in an hermetic container and lay the flowers inside, fastidiously overlaying them with a layer of sand. Shut the container and go away for a number of days earlier than checking the drying progress.
You could fastidiously take away the flowers as sand is heavier than silica gel. Pull them out gently to maintain the petals hooked up, disregarding any extra sand earlier than use.
Urgent flowers between the pages of books is a standard and basic drying methodology that comes with a contact of nostalgia. Pressed blooms are perfect for use in crafts, setting in resin, framing, or, my private favourite – maintaining within the books as a bookmark.
Relying in your chosen flowers, this methodology takes a couple of month to finish – presumably longer. It additionally requires loads of persistence and restraint, as you’ll be able to’t examine on them whereas they dry. Should you open the guide too early, you threat pulling off petals that haven’t fully dried but.
A guide is the most cost effective methodology, utilizing issues you have already got round your private home. Your chosen guide ought to be comparatively heavy (like a textbook or dictionary) or weighed with different objects to shut the pages successfully. Relying on the flower’s form, you too can wrap a belt across the guide to carry the pages in place.
Ink can switch in some books, so it’s greatest to line the pages with watercolor paper to soak up moisture. This makes them simpler to take away with out harm, as pressed blooms are extremely delicate.
How To Press Utilizing Books
When choosing your flowers for urgent, select ones with skinny petals that can look good pressed flat. You’ll be able to press a spread of blooms efficiently, however not all will look as fairly when flattened. Vegetation like cosmos or California poppies are best, or you’ll be able to search for smaller blooms like forget-me-not.
Place them between the guide’s pages, manipulating the petals into the specified form when dried. Rigorously shut the pages and place heavy objects on high – maybe extra heavy books if in case you have them.
After a couple of month, take away the books, open the pages, and thoroughly slide the flowers out. Deal with fastidiously after removing to maintain the petals intact.
Those that dry often might need to contemplate investing in a flower press. The mechanism is similar as urgent with a guide, however with a devoted press, you don’t have to fret about weighing books down or unintentionally breaking flowers if you pull them out.
There are numerous flower presses obtainable to buy on-line or at craft shops. Some use belts or straps to tighten and press, whereas others have bolts to screw in and maintain the boards in place. Flower presses are additionally comparatively simple to make utilizing scrap wooden, screws, and cardboard or felt.
Like guide urgent, select flowers that look good when pressed flat. Pale blue and violet daisy-like aster blooms are a great possibility. You could additionally contemplate whether or not the vegetation you need to dry will match inside your press. Past these issues, you’ll be able to decide nearly any plant to pop into your press.
How To Dry Utilizing A Flower Press
Choose your chosen flowers early within the morning when the petals are nonetheless sturdy and upright. You’ll be able to both trim the stem or go away it, relying on what you need to use them for. Strip the leaves or maintain them on if you need a fuller look (when framing, for instance).
Lay the vegetation inside your press, shifting till you’ve gotten your required form. Should you’re drying a number of flowers directly, go away a bit of house between them so that they don’t stick collectively. Tighten the press and go away for a couple of month earlier than eradicating your delicate creations.
Should you’re quick on time and have restricted provides, oven-drying works in a pinch. It’s not a most well-liked methodology due to its affect on the flowers, however it’s price a strive should you’re simply experimenting with blooms out of your backyard.
The issue with oven drying is the affect on colour and form. Oven-dried blooms don’t retain their colour nicely, and the petals usually fall off with out warning. It may be useful for blooms the place form isn’t a priority – like drying lavender for potpourri – however isn’t best for shows.
How To Dry Utilizing The Oven
To keep away from burning, set your oven to the bottom attainable temperature. Line a tray with baking paper to forestall sticking and lay the flowers on the tray, leaving a little bit of house between each.
Go away the tray within the oven for a few hours with the door open very barely to permit the moisture to flee. Examine on them usually to guarantee they don’t burn or flip too brown. Smaller sorts will take round six to eight hours to fully dry.
Lastly, if you have already got a meals dehydrator, you too can use it to dry your flowers. This methodology preserves colour a lot better than drying within the oven, however the vegetation turn into fairly brittle and have to be dealt with fastidiously.
You’ll be able to dehydrate any kind of flowers in the event that they match simply into your dehydrator. It really works nicely for these with thinner petals, like carnations or daisies. You can even dry particular person petals for crafts or potpourri for the reason that flowers maintain their scent comparatively nicely.
How To Dry Utilizing A Dehydrator
Place your flowers within the dehydrator, leaving a little bit of house between them to cease them from sticking collectively. Don’t overload the dehydrator – dry fewer directly somewhat than too many to make sure they maintain their form and don’t get broken.
Set your dehydrator to 90F and dry for a few hours. You’ll be able to go as excessive as 120F, however don’t go above this warmth degree as it may well trigger discoloration. Smaller flowers will dry faster than bigger ones, so instances will fluctuate. It might solely take an hour or two for small and delicate blooms, however examine progress often to find out one of the best time to take away them. Drying for too lengthy will make the petals crisp.
Though air drying is essentially the most generally beneficial methodology, it’s definitely not the one one. Every of those strategies works nicely for drying, and the one you select ought to rely upon how a lot time you’ve gotten, what you need the flowers to seem like, and what you need to use them for.