How to Dry Crocosmia


Submerging a dry crocosmia blossom in water releases a saffron-like scent. This accounts for the flower's name, derived from two Greek words meaning saffron and smell. Dried crocosmia petals floating in water add fragrance to a room, while the intact flowers can be used in craft projects or floral arrangements. Using a desiccant, such as silica gel or a borax and white cornmeal mixture will gently dry the flowers. If using silica gel, use an airtight box with a lid, and if drying with the borax mixture, use a sturdy cardboard box without a lid.

Step 1

Select crocosmia blossoms at their peak, as opposed to flowers that are beginning to show signs of wilting. Cut from the plant, leaving several inches of stem attached to the flower.

Step 2

Spread an even layer of the desiccant on the bottom of the box, about 1 to 2 inches deep. If drying with a borax mixture, use one part borax to one part white cornmeal. Add three tablespoons of salt for each quart of borax-cornmeal mixture to help preserve the color of the flowers. Blend the borax mixture well before adding it to the box.

Step 3

Arrange the cut flowers on the desiccant, so that the flowers are facing upwards. Do not allow the flowers overlap or touch each other.

Step 4

Cover the flowers with a thin layer of the desiccant material, until completely covered. Add slowly and gently. Gently tap the box to settle the material and continue to add desiccant until all parts of the flower are covered.

Step 5

Place a tight lid on the airtight box if drying with silica gel. If using the borax mixture, leave the cardboard box uncovered.

Step 6

Set the box in a warm, dry area. Crocosmias dried with the borax mixture will take about two to three weeks to dry. Drying with silica gel will take three to eight days.

Step 7

Check the flowers regularly, at least once a week. When dry they will be crisp but not brittle.

Step 8

Pour the desiccant from the flowers slowly, and gently remove each flower. Use a soft brush to remove excess desiccant.

Things You'll Need

  • Gardening shears
  • Non-iodized salt
  • Borax
  • White cornmeal
  • Silica gel
  • Cardboard box or airtight box with lid
  • Soft brush


  • University of Missouri Extension: Drying Flowers and Foliage for Arrangements
  • Washington State University,Clark County Extension: Garden Mastery Tips: African Bulbs--Crocosmia
Keywords: drying crocosmia, preserving crocosmia, crocosmia silica gel

About this Author

Ann Johnson has been a freelance writer since 1995. She previously served as the editor of a community magazine in Southern California and was also an active real estate agent, specializing in commercial and residential properties. She has a Bachelor of Arts in communications from California State University of Fullerton.