Valentine's Day 2023
Valentine's Day is just around the corner, one of our busiest times of the year. The rose always has been and still is the favourite for sending those romantic gestures, especially the red rose, however, people are still put off choosing roses because they think they are hard to look after. A lot of work goes into the breeding of flowers and the subsequent care once the flowers have been cut. A common problem with roses is called 'bent-neck'. The stem right under the bud is not strong enough to carry the weight of the growing flower, causing it to bend. A good post-harvest treatment prevents this problem as advised by Chrysal, the producers of flower food for the grower, florist and consumer. These products improve water intake and flower development and prevent early ageing and bent-neck. The stage at which the flowers are cut is also crucial for roses. If you cut flowers prematurely they are more susceptible to bent-neck, while roses that are cut too late have an increased risk of damage.
Specialist rose growers Porta Nova have shared their tips for the care of roses, from harvesting to consumer.
"After cutting the roses in the fields we start our post-harvesting process. Treating the freshly-cut roses well is very important for the rest of their lifespan. Keyword in this is HYGIENE. With good hygiene, you optimize perhaps already 80% of the rose's vase life. Step one is right after harvesting. We rush our roses to the cold storage where they are put in ice-cold clean water that contains a little chlorine. The roses stay here overnight, before the next day, the selection process begins. Then comes the second step in post-harvesting, putting the selected roses in water with Chrysal Grow 20. This keeps the water clean and stimulates the water uptake.
At Porta Nova, we even go one step further when it comes to hygiene. We use Chrysal Clean Touch. All the materials that touch the roses are cleaned with this product. All secateurs, conveyor belts, trolleys, and buckets are as clean as can be, almost sterile. Just to give the roses a perfect start."
There are a then few simple tips to maximize the flowering and vase life of roses. And the basis is, again, hygiene:
- You can rinse the vase before with water and a drop of chlorine or dishwashing liquid
- Then simply use clean tap water and add some flower food
- Use a sharp knife to cut 4-5 cm of the rose stems at an angle (also in bouquets!)
- Remove leaves from the stems so that no leaves are below the water level
- Never scrape the skin off the stems since this will lead to increased bacterial growth
- Place the vase of roses in a draught-free location to prevent them from becoming limp
- Never place a vase of roses close to a window in the sun."
Just a few tips to ensure a long life for your flowers. Following these instructions will ensure you will get a minimum of 7 days life for your roses.