Flower gardens are at their peak in the spring and summer, but you can save some of their brilliance for year-round viewing by pressing or drying some of the blooms. Dried flowers can be hung about the house in bunches or arranged in decorative bowls. Pressed flowers are often framed or used to decorate bookmarks, greeting cards and other paper crafts. Drying and pressing flowers is a simple activity that will preserve a little piece of your garden.
Cut the flowers you will be drying. Provide as long a stem as possible. Gently remove any unwanted buds, leaves or blossoms.
Gather the cut flowers together into small bunches. Tie each bunch together at the end with string.
Hang the flower bunches in a dry, dark place. A closet or pantry works well. Humidity will cause the flowers to rot, and sunlight will fade their colors, so it is important to protect them from both.
Touch the flower petals gently every three days to see if they are dry. Do not remove the flowers until they are completely dry to the touch. It can take up to two weeks for some flowers to dry out completely.
Cut your flowers at the height of their bloom. Make sure there is no moisture on them when they are picked from morning dew or a recent watering.
Remove the blossom from the stem. Carefully remove any leaves you want to press as well.
Arrange the flowers and leaves exactly as you want them to appear when pressed. Petals that are folded, twisted or bent will be irrevocably sealed into this position after pressing.
Place the flowers between two sheets of white paper, tissue paper or coffee filters. Put this inside a heavy book or flower press.
Change the paper if it has become moist or stained when you check on the flowers once a week. Remove the flowers when they are completely dry and flat.
About this Author
Mandi Rogier is a freelance writer who enjoys writing about a wide range of topics. She works regularly on web content, writing for Demand Studios as well as Associated Content. She previously worked at Walt Disney World and enjoys writing travel content that makes use of her extensive knowledge of Orlando theme parks.