Arranging flowers can be based on a complicated set of rules and designs, such as those found in the Japanese form of flowering arranging called Ikebana, or it can be as simple as placing a bunch of daisies in a pitcher on the kitchen counter. Flowers add color, scent and freshness. Any room, from the bathroom to the dining room, benefits from flowers.
Use the Freshest Flowers
Cutting flowers in the early morning from your own garden ensures they're at the peak of freshness. If you don't have a garden, or the flowers you want aren't in bloom yet, talk with the manager of the floral department at your grocer's to find out when flowers are shipped in. Plan to buy that morning. Most florists will special order flowers for you as well.
Flowers fade in the heat. Keep the flowers cool while they're waiting to be arranged. Place the arrangements in the coolest part of the room away from heating vents, radiators and sunny windows. Add ice to the water when you change it. If the arrangements are for a party, or an event, keep them in a cool garage, a cooler filled with ice or in a spare fridge.
Soak the Foam
When using floral foam make sure you're using foam made for fresh flowers. There is also foam made for use with dried floral arrangements. Soak the foam for 20 minutes in the sink, or a bucket of water, rather than running water over it. The interior of the foam needs to be completely wet, and that won't happen just by running water over the foam. The end of the flower stem needs to make contact with the foam. Don't push a stem into the foam and then pull it back up. That creates an air gap in the foam, and the flower will wilt because it's not getting any water.
More is More
If you don't have a lot of experience with arranging flowers, stick with a mass of one kind of flower. Choose a large flower such as roses, chrysanthemums, lilies, peonies or sunflowers. Use at least a dozen flowers. Cut the stems into three different lengths. Arrange the tallest stems in the center of the bouquet with the shorter stems around the taller ones. The flowers will fall into an attractive grouping.