Drying rose petals allows you to preserve the bounty of your summer rose garden all year. Many roses hold their fragrance when they dry. This makes the rose a perfect flower for potpourri. Fill a vase with rose petals for your dining room table centerpiece or scatter them around desserts for an added touch of elegance. Drying rose petals is a fun and easy summer project that will be rewarding even after winter has set in.
Drying Rose Petals
Cut the rose flower off the stem using a pair of sharp shears. Pick the rose petals when the flower is fully opened but before the petals begin to dry and fall off the plant.
Hold the rose flower upside down over a paper bag, and gently grasp the petals with your fingers. Pull them from the flower head, being careful not to damage the petals.
Spread the rose petals out on a drying screen. You can purchase a drying screen at a hardware or garden store or make your own by stretching window screening over a 2-by-4 frame.
Place the drying screen with the rose petals in a warm, dry room and leave them until they are completely dry.
Drying Roses on the Stem
Cut rose flowers at the base of the stem. Try to cut the stems for maximum and approximately equal length.
Lay the flowers out on a table and arrange them in bunches according to type of rose and stem length.
Gather together a small bunch (three to six roses) and tie a ribbon or string around the stems. Wrap it several times around and tie it with a knot, leaving a 12-inch length at one end. The string should be snug but not so tight that it damages the stems.
Tie a loop at the end of the long tail of string. Hang the roses upside down from a hook or a nail to dry.
About this Author
Olivia Parker has been a freelance writer with Demand Studios for the past year, writing for Garden Guides and eHow. She has studied herbal and alternative medicine and worked as a landscape artist and gardener. Parker is currently pursuing a Bachelors of Arts from Boston University Online.