How to Care for Rose Bouquets


Roses are a wonderful gift for Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, Christmas and other special occasions. The only drawback to giving or receiving a bouquet of roses is how quickly they tend to fade. The blooms can go from stunning to wilted in just a day or two. Even with a little care, such as adding water regularly, rose bouquets do not last more than a few days. Given the proper care, however, they can last a week or more, looking beautiful the entire time.

Step 1

Clean the vase with a solution of one-part bleach to about 10-parts water. This will remove any bacteria that might have been lingering from previous uses.

Step 2

Add flower preservative to the vase and fill with water.

Step 3

Remove any leaves that would be under water once you place the stems in the vase. This will help the bouquet stay fresh longer.

Step 4

Pluck any damaged or brown petals from the roses. Touch the roses as little as possible.

Step 5

Cut the stem of each rose in the bouquet about an inch from the bottom. This will open up the stem and allow it to absorb water.

Step 6

Place the rose bouquet in the vase immediately after cutting. If you allow the roses to sit after cutting, the bottom of the stems will start to seal and the roses will die sooner.

Step 7

Refill the vase with water as necessary. Do not let the water level drop below the bottom of the stems.

Step 8

Replace all the water and preservative every third day. Keep the water fresh and clean to keep the roses hydrated. Bacteria in dirty water kills cut roses quickly. Cut the stems about an inch each time you change the water.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not place your roses where it is excessively warm or in direct sunlight. Heat will cause the flowers to open and wilt faster.

Things You'll Need

  • Bleach
  • Water
  • Vase
  • Flower preservative
  • Sharp scissors


  • Cooperative Extension at URI: Cutting Roses From Your Garden
  • University of Illinois Extension: Cut-Flower Care
Keywords: care for rose bouquets, make rose bouquets last longer, rose bouquet care, caring for cut flowers

About this Author

Carlye Jones is a journalist, freelance writer, photographer and novelist, with more than 15 years of experience. She enjoys sharing her expertise on home improvements, interior decorating, photography, gardening and traveling. Her work has appeared both in print and on numerous websites, such as Matador Travel. Carlye received her training at Northern Arizona University.