With Easter and Mother’s Day fast approaching, I present to you some tips for extending the life of your cut flowers.

The first step is to make sure your container or vase is clean, then, fill it with cool or lukewarm water. If you have an arrangement from a florist, a food packet will likely be provided. This packet contains powder that dissolves in the water and provides nutrients that will make the flowers last longer. Use it.

Remove at least an inch from the ends of the stems before placing them in the water. Repeat this process every couple of days, every time you change the water. The flowers provided by a retailer will have stems long enough for you to do this multiple times. Use a knife or scissors sharp enough to make a clean cut and not mash the stems. The flowers will be better able to absorb water this way.

If any leaves fall below the water line, remove them to prevent contamination.

Make sure that you place your arrangement away from direct light, stoves and heat vents.

Remember that some flowers tend to last longer than others. Daisies, alstroemerias, mums, lilies and carnations tend to last many days longer than roses and tulips, for example.