How to Dry Hydrangeas


John Bartram is credited with discovering the hydrangea in Georgia after an extensive search throughout the United States for new plant life. The hydrangea's name is derived from Greek and is translated to mean "water vase" after the shape of the seed heads. These bright blooms add a splash of color to your yard and if you hate to see them go away when fall comes along, you can dry them out and allow them to contribute their decorative color to the inside of your home as well.

Step 1

Cut the blooms off of the bush carefully so as not to damage the structural integrity of the flowers. The best time to do this is in the late summer when the flowers are beginning to change colors.

Step 2

Strip the stems of leaves and pick off any dead blossoms so that the flowers look just the way you want them to look preserved.

Step 3

Cover the bottom of a plastic container with silica gel crystals.

Step 4

Place the flowers into the container so that the stems are resting on the crystals.

Step 5

Hold the flowers in the container and pour silica gel crystals around the stems to hold them in place.

Step 6

Let go of the hydrangeas and pour silica gel crystals in around and onto the flowers to completely cover them being careful not to smash them by pouring the crystals too fast.

Step 7

Cover the container with the lid and set it in a cool dry place for four days.

Step 8

Remove the hydrangeas by pouring out the crystals into a separate container. Brush away any excess crystals from the blossoms with a makeup brush or by gently shaking.

Tips and Warnings

  • Wear a mask and work in a ventilated area when using silica gels. Read and follow the manufacturers' instructions carefully.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 plastic containers, one with lid
  • Silica gel crystals
  • Makeup brush (optional)


  • GardenWorld, A Hymn to Hydrangeas
  • How to Dry Hydrangeas
Keywords: silica gel, dry hydrangea flowers, drying flowers

About this Author

I’m a cleaning guru with a blog that I try to keep up with in my spare time: I’m prior service military, a previously certified EMT-B, a dental assistant, mother of one (2 if you count the cat) married to my best friend, and I have an extensive background in aerospace science and technology.