How to Keep Cut Tulips Fresh


Tulips have simple needs when you cut them from your flower garden and place them in a vase of water. Because tulips consume significant water while they sit in a vase, the most important key to a long-lasting tulip display is regular fresh water. Choose a cool spot for your cut tulips that is out of drafts and direct sunlight and your tulips will stay beautiful and vibrant for days in a vase.

Step 1

Open one floral preservative envelope and sprinkle the powder into the vase.

Step 2

Fill the vase with warm water. Stir the water with the long spoon to dissolve the floral preservative.

Step 3

Run cool water from the tap and hold the end of one tulip stem under the water. While the water runs over the end of the stem, cut 1 inch off the end of the tulip stem with the knife (make the cut at a 45-degree angle). Clip off any leaves that may be beneath the water level when the tulip stem is in the vase. Place the tulip into the vase of warm water immediately. Repeat the cutting process with each tulip stem.

Step 4

Place the vase of tulips in a cool area of your home with daily temperatures around 70 degrees F.

Step 5

Check the water of the tulips every day and add water mixed with floral preservative each day to keep the vase full.

Step 6

Change the water in the vase completely every four days. Pour out the old water in the vase, rinse the vase and fill it again with warm water and another envelope of floral preservative. Cut the tulips under cool running water again, removing 1 inch from the bottoms of the stems at a 45-degree angle.

Tips and Warnings

  • Never place tulips in the same vase with daffodils. Daffodil stems emit a sap into vase water that will damage tulips.

Things You'll Need

  • Floral preservative
  • Vase
  • Warm water (100 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • Long spoon
  • Sharp knife


  • Big Y: Care Tips for Cut Tulips
  • University of Illinois Extension: Care of Cut Flowers and Foliage
Keywords: tulips, long-lasting tulip display, cut tulips

About this Author

Kathryn Hatter is a 42-year-old veteran homeschool educator and regular contributor to Natural News. She is an accomplished gardener, seamstress, quilter, painter, cook, decorator, digital graphics creator and she enjoys technical and computer gadgets. She began writing for Internet publications in 2007. She is interested in natural health and hopes to continue her formal education in the health field (nursing) when family commitments will allow.