Bird of paradise flowers are tropical blossoms that have brightly colored petals. These flowers can be very difficult to dry properly because they are incredibly delicate. According to gardening expert Linda Yang, the best way to preserve bird of paradise flowers is to gently remove their moisture with silica gel. For best results, dry these flowers when they are still fresh and vibrant; if they begin to wilt and lose color, they are much more difficult to dry successfully.
Pour a few inches of silica gel into the bottom of an airtight container. Spread the crystals so that they are lying in an even layer.
Place the bird of paradise flower bloom-side-up on top of the silica gel. Arrange the petals and leaves so that they are not overlapping, then gently fill in the sides and top of the container with more gel. Make sure that every part of the flower is covered with the gel, but do not pour the crystals directly onto the bird of paradise. That can crush the petals.
Place the lid on the container and put it in a cool, dry place. The bird of paradise flower will take two to five days to dry completely.
Remove the dry bird of paradise flower from the silica gel and gently brush any debris from its petal. Dried tropical flowers are easily damaged; to protect the bird of paradise, place it in a closed clear container to display it. A sealed glass or plastic floral display container works best for this purpose.