How to Press Rose Petals


People press rose petals for a lot for reasons. Some want to preserve the memory of a romantic gesture, while others want to include roses in craft and home decor items. Pressing is one of the best ways to preserve the color of your rose petals. The process takes one to three weeks.

Step 1

Gather your roses before midafternoon. Roses are their freshest in the morning. Choose roses that are fully open, with smooth, vibrant-looking petals.

Step 2

Line your work surface with an old newspaper or a few sheets of stacked paper towels. Carefully remove each petal, starting at the outside row and working inward. Discard the stem and any undesirable petals.

Step 3

Arrange the petals in a single, flat layer on top of your newspaper or paper towels. They should be close but not touching.

Step 4

Place a second layer of paper towels or newspaper on top of your petals. You can add more layers of petals and papers if you have a lot of flowers to press. Then place a weight, such as a book, board or heavy box, on top of the paper. Leave the weight in place for at least one week. Two weeks is usually best, but the process can take up to four depending on the flower and your home's humidity.

Step 5

Remove the weight and top layer of paper. Check the petals to make sure all excess moisture has been removed and that they are pressed and dry. If your petals are not completely dried, replace the top layer of paper and replace the weights. Consider adding heavier weights or move the petals to a less humid environment. Check again after one week.

Tips and Warnings

  • Always be careful of thorns.

Things You'll Need

  • Newspaper or paper towels
  • Book or other weight


  • How to Press Flowers
  • How to Press Flowers, Leaves and Herbs
  • How to Press Flowers

Who Can Help

  • Rose Petal Projects
Keywords: press roses, preserve roses, dry rose petals

About this Author

Lillian Downey is a writing professional who has served as editor-in-chief of "Nexus" literary journal and as an assistant fiction editor at the "Antioch Review." Downey attended Wright State University, where she studied writing, women's studies and health care.