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How to Take Care of a Bouquet of Roses

By Joshua Duvauchelle ; Updated September 21, 2017
Maintain your rose bouquet longer.

Rose bouquets are often given for special events like Valentine's Day or Mother's Day, but they can be given as a thoughtful gesture throughout the year. The life and appearance of the roses rapidly decreases as soon as the flowers are severed from the rose bush. Whether you received the roses as a gift or are planning to give the bouquet to someone, several maintenance tips can help you sustain the flowers' health for as long as possible.

Inspect the rose bouquet before you buy it. The roses should only have a couple of loose petals, and their foliage should be green and crisp, according to the University of Illinois. If cutting roses off a bush yourself, choose slightly opened blossoms and cut them in the early morning, according to the Alabama Cooperative Extension.

Condition the cut roses. Fill a bucket with warm water and submerge the ends of the roses in it. Use pruning shears or scissors and cut the bottom inch off of each rose stem, keeping the stem underwater the whole time. Let the flowers sit in the warm water for a couple of hours.

Fill a vase or similar holding receptacle with water. Add cut flower food, available from most floral shops. This helps preserve the roses' health and color and can double their cut lifespan, according to the University of Illinois.

Insert the roses into the vase. Trim off any leaves that are underwater to avoid rotting. Refill the vase with water as needed, as roses are heavy drinkers, according to the Alabama Cooperative Extension.

Set up the vase in an area that's away from direct sun and drafts, which can reduce the life of the roses, according to the University of Illinois. Spray the roses once a day with water to help keep it cool and increase the humidity around the roses. When the vase is not on display, store it in your refrigerator to extend the lifespan of the flowers even further.


Things You Will Need

  • Bucket
  • Pruning shears or scissors
  • Cut flower food
  • Spray bottle


  • All is not lost if your rose bouquet looks wilted. Revive wilted roses by filling a bathtub with warm water and submerging the entire bouquet underwater. Leave the flowers in the water for 60 minutes, according to the University of Illinois. This allows all parts of the bouquet, including the flower petals and leaves, to absorb water and become perkier.

About the Author


Joshua Duvauchelle is a certified personal trainer and health journalist, relationships expert and gardening specialist. His articles and advice have appeared in dozens of magazines, including exercise workouts in Shape, relationship guides for Alive and lifestyle tips for Lifehacker. In his spare time, he enjoys yoga and urban patio gardening.