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L.Srikumar Pai
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The secret of keeping flowers fresh
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Roses, carnations, orchids, oriental lilies...If you love to decorate your home with flowers even in summer, go ahead. A little sugar here, some distilled water there should keep them from wilting any time soon.

According to Nishith Pathak, flower expert and general manager-retail of Ferns 'N' Petals, fresh flowers need extra care in summer, as their shelf life diminishes due to high temperatures.

'Maintaining a beautiful interior with fresh flowers is a tedious job, especially in summer because fresh flowers have a short shelf life. The excessive heat and dryness decrease their life further, so one should take extra precautions to avoid their premature wilting,' Pathak told IANS.

He said the 'first and most important thing is to change the water of these fresh flowers every day.'

'Also when you change the water, cut half-an-inch of the stem diagonally as it leads to proper water flow in the flower,' Pathak added. 'Use plain or lukewarm water for most cut flowers. Distilled water is best but try to avoid tap water,' he said.

Pathak also suggested that fresh flowers be kept in a cool spot under moderate room temperature.

In order to increase the endurance of the stem, a bit of sugar should be added to the water. This will increase the life span of the flower by a few days.

These simple tips can help a single stem of rose last for four days instead of its usual life span of one day.

According to Daman Pal Singh, manager and owner of flower shop India Florist Direct, the room temperature plays a pivotal role in the shelf life of a flower.

'Room temperature should be moderate, say, around 22 degrees Celsius. The flowers should not be exposed to harsh direct sunlight, nor kept directly under the AC,' explained Singh.

'Also, one should keep these flowers away from direct sunlight and from appliances like television that give off heat, causing flowers to dehydrate,' he added.

In case you want a flower to bloom fast, Pathak suggests adding a tablet of Disprin. Adding a bit of sugar to the water will increase the life span of the flower by a few days.

If you are planning to gift flowers to your friends, opt for anthurium, birds of paradise, oriental lilies, orchids and carnations because they have a shelf life of around seven days compared to roses, which don't last for more than one or two days.

Experts also suggest that while selecting flowers, look for ones with upright, firm petals and buds beginning to open. Avoid yellow, spotted or drooping leaves - all signs of ageing.

Calcutta News.Net


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