Three Causes of Wedding Flower Death

Jul 22 08:19 2009 Nadine Visscher Print This Article

 If you have decided on the do-it-yourself wedding flower route, you will want to know about 3 causes of wedding flower death.

 If you have decided on the do-it-yourself wedding flower route,Guest Posting you will want to know about 3 causes of wedding flower death.


Hot, dry air is very hard on plant materials. It causes the transpiration rate to increase. This will result in delicate petals drying out and the vase life of all the flowers and foliage being cut in half. Keep your arrangements and bouquets away from any sources of heat such as radiators or fireplaces. Keep them away from any south facing windows where warm sunlight streaming through the glass will warm up the flowers significantly.


This is a gas that is produced by plants, flowers, leaves, and fruits as they age. This gas is odorless and speeds up the aging process. The plant creates more ethylene gas when the plant is either damaged or under stress. With cut flowers, most of their ethylene gas is produced in the calyx, which is the part of the flower that is directly below the petals. How fast a flower produces ethylene is a good indication of how long its vase life will be.

Flowers that are very sensitive to ethylene gas include sweet peas, some species of carnations, freesias, peruvian lilies, and roses. Most commercial cut flower growers treat their flowers to slow down the aging process, and therefore slowing down ethylene production. They can increase the vase life of their treated flowers by up to 50%.

Since fruit also produces ethylene, it's best not to leave a vase or container of flowers near a fruit bowl. In this situation, flowers can literally go limp overnight. Ethylene gas not only causes flowers to wither, it can cause leaves to go yellow, leaves to drop, and flower buds to remain closed.


Decaying plant material in water causes bacteria growth. You can see this when you have flowers in a see-through glass vase for a few days. After about 2 days the water will become cloudy because the bacteria are growing and multiplying. Even though this may look ugly, the main problem is that the bacteria will block the cells in the stems from taking up water and nutrients to nourish the flower. If this happens, the flowers and/or leaves will wilt and buds and partially open flowers will not develop and fully open. To prevent bacterial growth -

  • Wash all your containers or vases with hot soapy water to prevent bacteria. The container or vase should feel "squeaky clean" when it is wet. If it feels slippery, there is still bacteria on it and you should rewash it.

  • Remove all leaves off the part of the stem that will be in the water. Any leaves left to sit under the water will begin to rot, producing bacteria at a rapid rate.

  • Add flower preservative that has a fungicide or a few drops of bleach. These will prevent bacteria from forming and keep your water fresh as long as possible.

In conclusion, beware of heat, ethylene, and bacteria. If you take precautionary measures and follow the recommendations above, you should be fine with your do-it-yourself wedding flowers. They should stand up for the entire day - for pictures, ceremony, and reception - and add a special touch to beautify your wedding.

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About Article Author

Nadine Visscher
Nadine Visscher


Nadine Visscher has arranged flowers for over 15 years and has written The Beginner's Guide to Wedding Flowers found at

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