How to Dry Flowers

Dried flowers can add color and a touch of nature throughout the home. Getting beautiful pressed or dried flower arrangements is easier than you think. Read on for the secrets to beautiful dried flowers!

How to Press Flowers

flower arrangement with peonies
  1. Lay flowers or leaves facedown on smooth, absorbent paper such as white blotter paper. Build layers of plant materials between sandwiches of paper. If the paper is embossed, like some paper towels, the print will appear on your dried leaves and flowers -- usually not a great idea.
  2. Use a purchased press or make one from two rectangles of plywood with four holes drilled near the corners. Use wing nuts from a hardware store to tighten. Or do what most of us did as kids: Press your materials between pages of a heavy book with more weight piled on top.
  3. If you are using a flower press, retighten the wing nuts after two days (as the water in the flowers is absorbed by the paper, the press loosens).
  4. To get the best results and keep colors brightest, after about four days, carefully remove the flowers and leaves with tweezers and lay them on dry paper to continue the pressing process. Use the tip of a small paring knife to loosen if necessary. If you're using a book as your press, change pages of the book.

How to Air-Dry Flowers

  1. Bunch together a small cluster of stems with a rubber band. Hang upside down in a warm, dark, dry place.
  2. For small items, such as marigolds or rosebuds, place them on a cooling rack on a tray on top of your refrigerator. The warmth usually flows up from the back of the fridge and over the flowers to dry them quickly.

Learn how to make a beautiful collage with your dried flowers. Get the secrets to gorgeous dried peonies. Get tips and tricks for drying hydrangeas.

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