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Making Cut Flowers Last Longer

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2006
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by Patty S on May 19, 2006 04:53 AM
A lot of places that sell cut flowers include a little packet of powdered stuff that you put in the vase water to make them last longer. Does anyone know where to get that stuff in bulk... or what to ask for?

I got some from a florist shop once & what they charged me for it was ridiculous! There must be somewhere else to get it, but since I don't know what it might be called, it's hard to look for! [dunno]

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by RugbyHukr on May 19, 2006 05:09 AM
there are 2 tricks that i know for cut flowers.

1. add sugar to the water

2. add a small amount of bleach to the water

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I love the sweet scents wafting in the breeze. I stop to admire the vibrant colors of all living things. And people think me odd. Then ODD I am!!!

http://community.webshots.com/user/flugnash
by dodge on May 19, 2006 11:05 AM
I agree with Rugby,

A drop of bleach..Kills bacteria.

Lasts longer.
Also use that in water your rooting cuttings in.

Good luck .
dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by Rosepetal on May 19, 2006 01:22 PM
Rugby and Dodge are right.

I always use sugar in my flowers any time I bring them in. Can't wait for that time of the season again.

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For this "New Year" help me to be kinder and more loving to all around me, I pray.
by dodge on May 19, 2006 01:31 PM
Rosepetal,
i picked Lilacs today for my table .. i have white and purple...
Do you have them at your place?

Pennsylvania
dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by patches1414 on May 19, 2006 04:01 PM
Thanks Rugby! I knew they sold something to keep the flowers fresh longer, but I never looked into it! This is really nice to know, [Wink] but how much sugar and how much bleach are you talking about? [dunno]

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"Lord, I love you and I need you, come into my heart, and bless me, my family, my home, and my friends, in Jesus' name. Amen!"
by RugbyHukr on May 20, 2006 01:57 AM
depends on amount of water

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I love the sweet scents wafting in the breeze. I stop to admire the vibrant colors of all living things. And people think me odd. Then ODD I am!!!

http://community.webshots.com/user/flugnash
by weezie13 on May 20, 2006 02:40 AM
And if you aren't near your sugar bowl,
you can add any clear pop, ie; 7~up, Sprite.
but it has to be the sugared kind, NOT DIET!!

Also an cut up aspirin too...

I love using Clorox Clean~up in mine..
Smells a little nicer than regular bleach....

And use warm water when you first fill the water,
then set it somewhere's cool..

****And always pick flowers first thing in the morning...
they have fed, and it's healthier for the flower..
especially its'a NO~NO to pick them during the hot sunshine of say around noon time...

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by dodge on May 20, 2006 02:54 AM
weezie.

Pick flowers first thing in the morning?
I take that 2 ways.
Are you talking of dead blossoms your picking,
or cutting off flowers for a bouquet?
Cut them slanted when you cut them off.. gives it more area to absorb.
Dead blossoms I pick any time..

[kitty] [kitty] [kitty]
dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by weezie13 on May 20, 2006 03:19 AM
[wavey] Dodge,
[thumb] Picking the flowers [flower] for the vase...

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by dodge on May 20, 2006 04:21 AM
[wavey]

weezie,
I agree 100%.......

How is your garden right now? Penna has rain day an nite since sunday. 42 degrees this moment and no rain.
My plants are setting at a stand still stage..eek
[sleepy]

dodge;o)

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by Michael15r on May 20, 2006 06:22 PM
quote:
Originally posted by RugbyHukr:
there are 2 tricks that i know for cut flowers.

1. add sugar to the water

2. add a small amount of bleach to the water

Does bleach kill the plant though?
I kinda of scared to put bleach.. its not bad for plants???
So confused right now

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A Sunflower Garden #7
Check out my website.
by Patty S on May 20, 2006 09:58 PM
Michael, you're right, as far as I know... Chlorine bleach is NOT recommended for watering plants with, & I'd never try that! With cut flowers, however, once you pick it from the plant it's "dead" anyway, so you're not going to do it any more harm! Some of the suggestions in the above posts are saying to use sugar & bleach in the water that the cut flowers will sit in, to make them last longer.

I'm STILL wondering what the powder is called, that you can buy, to make cut flowers last longer... so I'm just about as confused as you are! [nutz]

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by weezie13 on May 21, 2006 12:49 AM
quote:
Does bleach kill the plant though?

Nope, you put in just a wee~bit compared to the
amount of water you have in the size vase you have...
It's like, I don't know, I've never measured it..
I'd say a tablespoon to a large vase..

What the bleach does is kills any bacteria build~ups in the water as the stem sticks in it.. and decomposes, which gives it a few days more to look pretty...

I do know you can buy large quantities of that stay fresh in like display size containers for business that you'd *they'd* sell for a $1.oo....
I'll see if I can hunt the info down..
*someone remind me, I have Boyscout stuff this weekend**

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by dodge on May 21, 2006 02:00 AM
Gees

I only put a drop of bleach in a vase.. Did that on 2 new carnations from moms day, and they are as fresh looking , as they were on moms day.. Dont feed it bleach.
My recipe says:::::1.5 tspoons of bleach to a gallon of water....
Use hot water when you cut them..

Use bleach to was containers, greenhouses, glass, It is a sterile product..Kills germs and rot.
Have a nice day.

Dodge [lala]

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by dodge on May 21, 2006 02:07 AM
One moment .

I dont use sugar with my bleach to do this. I use bleach alone.. Juwt a drop......

Nay no feeding with it.

Sterilize only.

b

dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by Rosepetal on May 21, 2006 11:13 AM
Hi dodge,

I've been busy with my gardening and have not been on the forum for a few days. Sure missed it. [Wink]

I do not have the lilacs that smell so pretty. When we bought our first set the guy we bought them from told me they were the right ones, so I've been really disappointed. I'm planning to plant some more. The ones I'm looking for are the "common lilac".

I just use 1 tsp of sugar in each vase of flowers I bring into the house. My roses often last a week other flowers longer. [flower]

Hey wish you could send me a bouquet of lilacs, just thinking about the makes me smile I do love them. [flower]

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For this "New Year" help me to be kinder and more loving to all around me, I pray.
by dodge on May 21, 2006 12:13 PM
rosepetal

here is a bouquet of my double whites.

Enjoy.

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Can you smell them?

dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by Rosepetal on May 21, 2006 12:27 PM
You bet I can smell them, [kissies]

Thanks lots you're so kind.

I'll have to come back a few times so I can enjoy them longer. [Big Grin] [Big Grin]

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For this "New Year" help me to be kinder and more loving to all around me, I pray.
by dodge on May 21, 2006 12:36 PM
[Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin]

Glad to help.;o)

I have purple too, one tree is lousy and the other one I ran over with my riding lawn mower, it is laying down, but I did pick posies off it.
I want the deep purple color one.. You must be hunting the old fashioned lilac? I think is what we have, cause it was here before us.

dodge [thinker]

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by Rosepetal on May 21, 2006 02:55 PM
That's right.... [muggs]

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For this "New Year" help me to be kinder and more loving to all around me, I pray.
by Patty S on May 22, 2006 07:41 PM
Whew! Now I'm REALLY confused! I thought we were talking about how to make cut flowers last longer, & somehow it turned into a Lilac discussion! [perplexed] (Nice Whites, by the way! Yes, I smelled them the minute I saw them... such an unforgettable & wonderful fragrance! Thanks!)
quote:
Originally posted by weezie13:
I do know you can buy large quantities of that stay fresh in like display size containers.....
Is that what it's called Weezie? "Stay fresh"? Where do you find it in quantities like that? Someone told me recently that you can buy the little packets from florists, but they're WAY expensive that way!

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by dodge on May 23, 2006 01:34 AM
Patty,

just hang in there.. topic or no topic.

I see it is senseless to buy stay fresh. I put a drop of bleach in 2 cut carnations from moms day. 7 days ago and the flowers are as gorgous as they were sunday a week ago.
I am going to see how long it goes.. Even if no one believes me.. [clappy] [clappy]

dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by Patty S on May 23, 2006 10:03 AM
Dodge, I'm glad that using bleach in your flower vase works for you, to make the flowers last longer! [thumb] I DO believe you, but I simply would rather not mess around with bleach, as I guess I'm too sloppy to get it exactly where I need it... I've ruined a lot of clothes, canvas deck shoes, throw rugs & carpeting by getting just one drop where I didn't intend for it to be!

My Grandkids and I take flowers from my yard to people we know who are hospitalized or shut in for one reason or another, & I would rather use the powder ("stay fresh, or whatever it's called), like what comes with cut flowers from the florist. I think it's better for me, all the way around, to be able to share what God has put in my yard with those who can't get out & tend to their own gardens, without it leading to buying the kids (or myself) new clothes!

Please do let us know how long your Mother's Day flowers last!
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by dodge on May 23, 2006 10:11 AM
PattyS

No offense ...Just was wondering. Yes I care and share all around here too.. garden helper is a GREAT idea.

thanks for writing

dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by weezie13 on May 23, 2006 11:39 AM
Patty,
Did you know that aspirin has willow in it and willow is a natural rooting compound..

*But Bleach will not hurt the flowers,
most of the time it's a teaspoon or two..
just enough to kill the bacteria when the stem
in the water is rotting..*
but I have clothing like you're talking about
with white streaks down the front too.. [Roll Eyes] [Frown] [Razz]

I searched this morning for the info I had,
still can't find it.. [Roll Eyes] [Embarrassed] [dunno]
but will when I get home late tonight...

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by Patty S on May 23, 2006 08:56 PM
I didn't know that, Weezie! I've heard of people putting aspirin in cut flower water, but I didn't know why they did.

I know that you're busier than a zoo monkey on Banana day with your Boy Scouts right now, but I do appreciate your looking for the info I want, & for taking the time to post. [kissies]
(I'm not going anywhere, & will still be around when you slow down!)
quote:
Originally posted by dodge:
No offense ...Just was wondering. Yes I care and share all around here too.. garden helper is a GREAT idea.
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by weezie13 on May 24, 2006 01:16 AM
On a side note [Wink] [Big Grin] , you can even put chopped up/powderized aspirin in a deep cut to stop it from bleeding until you can get to a doctor...
*and I know you're thinking aspirin has a blood thinning quality when taken internally, but when used on the outside, it heals/coagulates them shut.*

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by dodge on May 24, 2006 01:32 AM
weezie,

Are you a medical doctor too/

dodge?

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by weezie13 on May 24, 2006 01:40 AM
No, but when my husband was in his early 20's,
he gafted his hand open at the base of his palm to the middle of his baby finger, all the way thru and they could see tendons and stuff..
And his father knew about it, and they chopped up the aspirin, and shoved it in the cut...

When they got to the doctors, the doctor asked them pretty much the same question..
but it's an old timers "mother's cubboard" cure I guess...
Anyways probably shouldn't have posted that here as it is a Cutflower post.. [Embarrassed] [Wink]

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by dodge on May 24, 2006 01:45 AM
weezie
,

We were talking aspirins.. That went with our story.. Ha ha .

[Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin]
We have sunshine today, and frost last nite. Right on 31 ..Glad I hauled all the plants under the porch last ite.

dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by Patty S on May 24, 2006 11:04 AM
I didn't know that about aspirin too, Weezie! Thanx! [thumb]

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by Triss on May 24, 2006 11:21 AM
Maybe so Weezie, but since we were talking asprin for cut flowers, it is good to know that there are other uses. Especially for those of us who have kids and grands running around all the time.

I have done asprin a lot with flowers but mostly for Christmas trees. Going to have to get some for once I actually get to start cutting flowers cuz even though the bleach may be a good thng, I too am gonna avoid that one.

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We are all under the same stars... therefore we are never far apart.
by dodge on May 24, 2006 12:07 PM
To each his own......

Aspirin for cuts,

But bleach is far more cheaper to use on flowers. I am a penny saver.

dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by Lindsey on June 03, 2006 04:45 AM
I read somewhere that the recipe for a homemade version of those little packets of preservatives is 4 heaping teaspoons of sugar and 2 tablespoons of white vinegar in one quart of warm water. I've never tried it (I'm testing out the bleach method with a bouquet of lilacs at the moment) but it sounds good...
by dodge on June 03, 2006 05:38 AM
Bleach is doing it for me.. My one carnation will be 2 weeks old sunday.. Down a bit but still nice.

dodge

aka barb

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by patches1414 on June 03, 2006 06:00 AM
quote:
the recipe for a homemade version of those little packets of preservatives is 4 heaping teaspoons of sugar and 2 tablespoons of white vinegar in one quart of warm water.
Lindsey, I've heard of using the sugar, white vinegar and water too, but I never did know what the exact proportions were! Thanks a lot for the information! [muggs]

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"Lord, I love you and I need you, come into my heart, and bless me, my family, my home, and my friends, in Jesus' name. Amen!"
by weezie13 on June 03, 2006 06:01 AM
Guess I've always been a little shy with the sugar, I do the others, but not that amount of sugar.. I"ll have to start adding more.. [shocked] [Embarrassed]

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by dodge on June 03, 2006 08:21 AM
I use bleach cause it is cheapest..

dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by Rosepetal on June 03, 2006 11:40 AM
Hi Weezie

My son just graduated last week and at the grad supper all the grad' mothers got a rose. I put 1 tsp of sugar in my rose bowl and it's still beautiful.

I do a lot of cut flowers all summer long this way and have most of them there for a week or more.

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For this "New Year" help me to be kinder and more loving to all around me, I pray.
by weezie13 on June 03, 2006 04:47 PM
I love cut flowerws, I send them over to my
mom's all the time...
Finding small or smaller vases are the hard part...

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by dodge on June 04, 2006 01:30 AM
weezie

Use empty soda cans.. I rigged up one for memorial day for the graves. Took a flower pot and put can in it filled with water. Put dirt all around it, put in my blooming azalea pieces.Added bubbler wrap to top of can.. Filled it all in like a flower....Presto.....instant Potted Azalea .....Have to hunt the photo for u to see.

dodge
barb

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by dodge on June 04, 2006 01:35 AM
weezie

My fake azalea

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dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by Patty S on June 04, 2006 05:26 PM
What a versatile topic this has turned out to be! [grin]
Great idea for the flower/plant display, Dodge! Looks good!  -

Necessity being the mother of invention, I solved my problem of always running out of small vases! My Grandgirls & I pick flowers & take them to people that we know who are shut-in at home or in hospitals/nursing homes, & I was forever running out of vases (& so were the thrift stores!) I didn't feel good about asking sick people to save my vases for me (they have more important things to focus on, than my vase), so I started saving all our vitamin & over-the-counter medicine bottles.

On rainy days when my Grandgirls are here, we sit & cut out big circles of pretty gift wrap to cover the medicine bottles with, & tying ribbon at the mouth of the bottle to hold the wrap in place. (cellophane or plastic gift wrap works better than paper, of course, as they do get wet.)

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They look nice, & it doesn't matter if they get thrown away, because they cost nothing to make & there are always more where those came from!

Medicine bottles come in all sizes, so there is always an appropriate sized "vase" to fit the flowers we choose. (We're also able to color coordinate our vases to the colors of our bouquets!) If the blossoms are top-heavy for the light weight vases, a few small rocks in the bottles keep them from tipping over.

Since my husband accuses me of never throwing anything away, I hate to disappoint him, so besides hanging onto empty medicine bottles, I save used ribbon from birthday & Christmas gifts, cellophane gift wrap & even solid colored plastic bags that you get from stores occasionally. All the materials are collected in a big box, ready for our rainy-day craft project... that way, we always have a vase handy for when we hear that someone might appreciate a visit & a few flowers to cheer them up!

Yes, the Roses are real... [flower] the first ones from that bush, this season! I used this opportunity to show them off, although they ARE a bit large for the biggest of the bottles we decorate! (Actually, that one is a plastic mayo jar!) The little blue flowers are my favorite, Nigella damascena (AKA love-in-a-mist, devil in the bush, Jack in the green, ragged lady & fennel flower.)

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by Murph on June 04, 2006 05:33 PM
Patty those roses look artificial in this picture. What good ideas you always have to do with those girls.

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Carol
by weezie13 on June 04, 2006 06:07 PM
Patty,
Those flower vases are beautiful...
And sooo are those flowers, so hugeeeee..
And deep red.. great arrangement for awesome vases..

I love your ideas..

I save those "Juice Hug Jugs" to send the boys with over to Gramma's house.. so, if they accidently trip, they don't break and shatter glass....
Or if I let them sit by the sidewalk and "sell~stuff", I'll stick a couple of flowers in those "hug~jug vases'" and send them home with the people..(of course most of the time it's Gramma and the one neighbor, but that's half the fun of sitting there, is the anticipation..)

Sorta like how this post will ever end up? [Embarrassed] [Embarrassed] [Embarrassed] I am just as guilty for tangenting posts too.. [Embarrassed] [Embarrassed] [Embarrassed]

Love the love-in-a-mist too, so pretty...

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by Patty S on June 04, 2006 07:39 PM
AHA! [shocked] My "real life" sister showed up here! [wavey] Hi Sis! [kissies]
quote:
those roses look artificial in this picture
They really ARE real though, & you know they are, because you've seen them in person! [thumb]

I'd been so busy with other parts of the yard, that I hadn't noticed them until yesterday! They're at the tail end of being pretty, so I "dead-headed" today & brought them in... they're "done" to the point where one fell apart while I was putting it in the vase! (More buds are ready to bloom though... I'll have to watch it closer & get them picked before they get so full that no one can enjoy them, & to keep them coming on all summer.)

The girls have fun decorating the bottles, as well as picking flowers to put in them, & going along to deliver them to people who can't get out & enjoy their own gardens.

Nice to see you here! Don't be a stranger! [kissies]

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by Patty S on June 04, 2006 08:21 PM
Weezie, that sounds so cute... the kids "selling stuff" at the curb!! [Smile] The Hug Jug idea is excellent for the kids, so they don't have to worry about breaking a vase or jar, & getting cut (or getting in twubble!)  -

I have no idea where this topic will end up, Weezie! (I keep wondering if someone is holding stock in a bleach company!) [Big Grin] [Big Grin] Never the less, when I saw the zig-zag going to the subject of what to use for vases, I decided I'd throw my 2 cents worth in! (I also put it over in the craft forum.)

However, I AM still looking for the name of a commercial cut flower preservative, like what florists send in little packets with cut flowers! I'd already tried all the home "recipes" that people have suggested here, (INCLUDING BLEACH), & am simply not satisfied with the results, as compared with whatever is in those packets!

I know that besides containing sugar, the commecial/professional preservative also contains some sort of a microorganism (bacteria) inhibitor & a "respiratory inhibitor" that work together to "feed" the flowers & aid them in water uptake. Apparently, the commercial preservative is a very illusive commodity, but I haven't given up my quest to find out what it's called & where to get it!

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by dodge on June 05, 2006 02:54 AM
Patty,

Thanks
I loved the idea .......I have been sharing my plants rooted and ready with friend and family.. And seeds....Little 6 year old is planting seeds for grandma and pa......With yours truly influence.. Grandpa would not do flowers till I start whipping seeds and flowers on grandma.. She loves it .......

You girls and children keep up the good work.. We love you for your sweetness.

dodge [Love]

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''
by dodge on June 05, 2006 03:06 AM
[Confused]
Pattys

The only stock have, (Is Livestock)

Ha ha
Cows I live on a fare...Oh well, your half right.

dodge

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''''Those who live in the Lord Never See Each Other For The Last Time!''''

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