Glycerine is an excellent preservation treatment for flowers because it keeps them colorful and supple. You need glycerine (store-bought or a kit), some narrow glass vases and clean shears. Stem preparation takes 1 to 2 hours. Preservation typically takes between three days and three weeks depending on the flower.
- Prepare the flowers for treatment
Choose mature flowers because they absorb liquids better than younger, less established ones. Cut them extra long, and remove any undesired foliage. Hold your stems underwater, and cut them at an angle to increase the area of absorption and discourage air bubble formation. Keep the stems in water until you are ready to use them.
- Prepare the glycerine solution
Mix one part glycerine with two parts boiling water, or follow the directions on your kit. Pour 3 inches of solution into each vase. Position each stem upright in the liquid for quicker absorption and greater saturation. Small flowers and individual flower heads can be placed directly in the glycerine solution.
- Finish your flowers
Your stems are preserved when they have completely absorbed the solution and the leaves and flowers are supple. Hang preserved stems with flopping heads upside down for 24 hours to concentrate the preservative at the weakest part of the stem.