Preparing A Rose Display

Usually when given roses, our first reaction is to put them in a vase with water. We sometimes don’t even think about how we will present them to their advantage. Here are some suggestions for presenting your roses in an elegant display.

Items needed:

  • A large bouquet or two of roses
  • Complementary flowers such as tulips or hyacinths (optional)
  • Small garden shears
  • Vase
  • Cool or room temperature water, not cold
  • Floral preservative

I recommend having pruning shears on hand in your kitchen just for trimming cut flowers. Keep these shears sharp and clean. Cut the stems on a diagonal under water, if possible, in your sink or cut the stems and then plunge them immediately back into water. Air bubbles in the stem can develop and shorten the roses’ life span. Find out when your local flower store or florist gets their weekly shipment. Always buy at that time of week. For example, the best local flower vendor in my town receives his flowers on Thursday night, so I always buy on Friday. This works out well, because I want the flowers to be fresh on the weekend.

Fill your vase with water and add floral preservative. You can buy a large quantity at a garden center or nursery. Make sure the vase is dry and clean. Brace yourself — this might hurt a bit. Now cut the roses short so that the flowers rise just above the top of the vase. In other words, you won’t see any stem except in the water if you have a transparent vase. The flowers or buds should form a slightly rounded mound over the top of the vase.

This type of arrangement is low, compact and yet packed full with flowers. I dislike the look of 6 or 8 gangly roses sticking 6 inches out of a vase. Try combining pink roses with blue hyacinth or grape hyacinth or white roses with pink tulips. Combine different colored roses such as orange and pink — a shockingly beautiful combination.

And there you have it.