How to Preserve Cut Roses From the Garden


Cutting roses for use in flower arrangements is part and parcel of the pleasure of growing a rose garden. Careful harvesting and conditioning of rose blooms will ensure the longest possible vase life. Frequent changes of water with the addition of a floral preservative will also help to maintain the beauty of your roses for up to a week.

Step 1

Place cut roses immediately into tepid water after cutting.

Step 2

Prepare your vase by filling it 1/2 to 2/3 full with tepid to just barely warm water. Mix in 1 tsp. of white sugar and 2 drops of household bleach and swirl to dissolve and combine. The sugar will feed the roses and the bleach will keep bacteria at bay.

Step 3

Hold the rose stems under water in a bowl or sink and recut the end of the stem diagonally, removing at least 1/4 of an inch to create easy water uptake.

Step 4

Place the recut rose into the prepared vase water immediately. Repeat for all of the roses and then place the vase in a cool location out of direct sunlight and away from heating or cooling vents.

Step 5

Replace the vase water with preservative every day or every other day, recutting the stems underwater by 1/4-inch each time you so do.

Things You'll Need

  • Sharp, clean secateurs
  • Sink or bowl full of water
  • Sugar
  • Household bleach
  • Vase


  • University of Rhode Island: Cutting Roses From Your Garden
Keywords: cutting garden roses, conditoning cut roses, extending the vase life of roses

About this Author

An omni-curious communications professional, Dena Kane has more than 17 years of experience writing and editing content for online publications, corporate communications, business clients, industry journals, as well as film and broadcast media. Kane studied political science at the University of California, San Diego.