My hydrangeas, though late blooming this year, are now ready for drying.
I was crying over them this summer when there was nary a flower.
But then they surprised me with some late, good sized heads, and
I've been waiting to cut them for the process which will give me some
lovely muted color for inside the house during the winter months.
Yesterday there were still a few sleepy bees around. . . . but they didn't seem concerned when I starting cutting other blooms around them.
Drying naturally is so easy, no tricks required other than cutting at the right time.
My hydrangeas are all blue - I think they are the best color for preserving as they
change to many different shades, each one so beautiful.
Once the soft-to-touch, hydrated and flexible flowers begin to change both in color
and texture on the plant, it's time to harvest. Here in the southeast this has been the
perfect week prior to below freezing temperatures due tonight.
If you live in more northern climes you may have already cut your
beautiful hydrangeas and have them dried and part of your decor by now.
What you will require:
A tall heavy glass vase
Best time to cut flowers is late morning after any dew has evaporated.
Choose full well-shaped blooms.
Cut stems at an angle, 12-18 inches in length, and carefully remove all leaves.
Place in a clear container, heavy glass is best, filled halfway with fresh water.
All stems should be submerged several inches, and try not to have too many
heads crushed tightly together. This bunch, harvested earlier in the week, seemed
to gulp up the water almost immediately so I did replenish it.
Place your flowers in a cool dry area out of direct sun, but in a
spot where you can enjoy them as they dry out.
The process should take a couple of weeks. Once the water
has completely gone, your flowers should be ready to use for
winter, Christmas and decorative projects such as wreaths and table
centerpieces - or just massed in a lovely container such as a basket.
Some people spray them with hairspray when dry - I've never done that.
The best way is to dry new ones each year so they don't have a chance to
get dusty, faded, and start disintegrating all over your furniture.
Hope you have some lovely hydrangeas to dry and enjoy over the winter months.