At their core, the job duties of a floral preservative are simple: they help preserve not only the color of freshly cut flowers, but also the fragrance and even the strength of the plant as well. They typically get added to the water used on the flower and are made up of ingredients like sucrose, an acidifier, and some type of antibacterial agent.
But at the same time, not all floral preservatives are created in quite the same way. If you really want to make sure you’re selecting an option that will achieve your desired results, there are a number of important things to keep in mind.
Picking a Floral Preservative: Breaking Things Down
The first thing to check for when choosing a floral preservative involves making sure that it contains all three of the aforementioned ingredients. They work together in tandem to help preserve and extend the life of your flowers.
Sucrose, for example, provides nourishment to the flowers in question. It’s the primary ingredient that helps preserve both their smell and the vibrancy of their colors. The right amount of sucrose will essentially give them equivalent of a burst of energy, extending both of these properties.
The acidifier is equally important to look out for, but for a different reason. Most of the tap water people use has a pH level slightly over 5. The issue is that sap from flowers tends to be more acidic, coming in at a pH level of around 3.5. Because of that, the water you use needs to be more acidic than it likely already is to encourage the flower to take in the water it needs. The acidifier in your floral preservative should do precisely that.
Finally, the antibacterial agent (also sometimes referred to as a biocide) will kill off any of the microbes that may be present that could ultimately hurt your flower prematurely. This prevents bacteria or fungi from entering the bottom of the stem and causing harm. This point is particularly critical to watch out for, as you want to make sure that the antibacterial agent isn’t harmful to you, your children, or any pets that may be present. Always read the instructions to make sure you’re aware of any limitations regarding where, how, and on what types of flowers your preservative can be used.
Along the same lines, you’ll also want to make sure that you’re investing in a floral preservative that is easy and safe to use. There shouldn’t be any Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) of any kind. It also should not cause any rash or other irritation if it comes into contact with someone’s skin. Always read the warning labels very carefully and don’t choose a product that you aren’t comfortable with. At its most complicated, the solution you select should be added to the water and that water should be changed every three days or so.
In the end, floral preservatives are a great way to preserve your fresh cut flowers for as long as possible – provided that they’re used correctly. They should be versatile, safe, and most importantly reliable. By looking for an option with these properties, you’ll be able to enjoy all of the benefits of this process with as few of the potential downsides as possible.
If you’d like to find out more information about the key qualities to look for when choosing a floral preservative, or if you’d just like to speak to someone about your own needs in a bit more detail, please don’t delay – contact the team at Chemstar today.