You can create so many things with dried flowers and even better if you can avoid waste! We show you below four ways of drying them:
1. HOW TO DRY FLOWERS… IN THE AIR
One of the easiest ways to dry out a bouquet is to hang it upside down and allow the moisture to evaporate into the air. This is great for robust flowers, such as roses, and long-lasting varieties, like lavender. Strip away any excess foliage, secure your stems with an elastic band and hang in a dry, shady spot away from direct sunlight. TIP: Once completely dry, spray with unperfumed hairspray for protection.
2. HOW TO DRY FLOWERS… IN THE MICROWAVE
Pop your flowers in the microwave if you want to dry them fast. This technique is also ideal if you want to preserve single flowers.
All you’ll need is a microwavable container and some cat litter or silica gel (1-2 inches). Place the flowers blossom-up (Flat-faced flowers such as gerbera or daisies can be placed face down) on a layer of cat litter or silica gel. Gently cover the stems with approximately ½ an inch of your drying substance. Make sure the flower head is fully buried but not squashed by the drying substance. Do not put a lid or cover over the container.Start with one or two stems of the same variety to gauge how quickly they will dry. If you notice the petals have bent or misshapen after covering, use a toothpick to rearrange the petals as they will dry in whatever shape they lie in. Add a cup of water into the microwave along with the uncovered container. This reduces the chances of burning your flowers as the water will absorb the majority of the microwaves energy. Make sure the water is in a microwavable cup and be careful not to spill anything inside the microwave. Microwave the contents for 1-2 minute intervals depending on the size of your stems. This step is experimental as there is a lot of different microwaves and flower types. Continuously check with a toothpick to see if the flowers feel dry, if not, carry on with heating intervals. Carefully remove container and allow to cool. Drying agents like silica gel can get very hot and take a long time to cool down. Place a lid or some cling film over half of the container and leave it for 24 hours. Be sure to keep it out of reach of animals and children and keep out of direct sunlight. Remove your flowers from the container being careful not to bend or damage any of the contents. Tap or brush away the excess gel to clean the flowers.
Flowers Suitable for Microwave Drying
Agapanthus, Dahlia, Anemone, Eryngium, Clematis, Freesia, Carnation, Forsythia, Chrysanthemum, Gladiolus, Daffodil, Gypsophila, Gerbera, Peony, Hydrangea, Sunflower, Iris, Solidago, Lavender, Statice, Marigold, Tulip, Pansy, Veronica.
3. HOW TO DRY FLOWERS… WITH SILICA GEL
Silica gel is a drying agent that can be readily bought from craft shops. You can use this to dry out your blooms by either using the microwave technique or by gently burying your flowers in a container filled with the ‘gel’ and leaving them for a week to dry out.
4. HOW TO DRY YOUR FLOWERS… IN A VASE
Large robust blooms, like hydrangea, can be dried by leaving them in their vase of water – and doing nothing. Once the water has evaporated the flowers will dry gradually. This method will help retain more of their fresh-flower colour vibrancy than if left to dry with air alone.