How to Make Peony Flowers Last For Months
Peonies are so beautiful and usually once you start growing them you have bundles of blooms. The hard part is that you have a narrow window to cut peonies and bring them indoors! What if we told you, you could make peony flowers last for MONTHS!! Yes months! Using this technique Britt was able to incorporate peonies into her friend’s wedding bouquet in late September! Just follow these EXACT instructions, and you too can have peonies almost all year long!
Gathering Your Peonies
Step 1: Trim the peony flowers at the optimal time! For this technique to work you cannot just do this with any peony. The optimal peony for this technique is a bloom that it still mostly closed, but not tightly closed! When you feel the peony it should feel like a marshmallow.
Step 2: Trim the peony with approximately 16” of stem below the flower.
DO NOT PUT THE PEONY IN WATER … immediately do these steps! If you don’t have time to do this then only put the stem tips in the water so that a bunch of the stem doesn’t get wet.
Step 3: Once you get the peony flowers home you want to give the peony a good clean cut. You also need to remove all of the leaves and make sure the peony is clean of dirt and bugs (specifically ants).
If a large part of the stem is wet or if there is dirt, it promotes mold growing.
Step 4: Lay out plastic wrap on a flat surface.
Step 5: Place the cleaned-up peonies on the plastic wrap. You can place a few going opposite directions on the plastic wrap.
Step 6: Roll the peonies up in the plastic wrap. You want to wrap them so that the stem tips and the blooms are fully covered.
Step 7: Place the wrapped up peonies into a resealable bag. Remove as much of the air from the bag as possible.
Step 8: Place the bag of peony flowers in the fridge and lay them horizontal. The hard part is that this can take up room in your fridge.
Reviving the Peonies
When you are ready to enjoy or use the peonies allow 2 days to revive the blooms.
Step 1: Remove the peonies from the fridge.
2. Give the peony a nice clean trim approximately 2” off the bottom.
3. Place the peony in a clean vase with lukewarm water. It will take the peony approximately 2 days to warm up and start to open.
Because the peony is closed when you cut it it will take a few days to open up.
4. The next day change the water again and give the peonies some flower food if you would like.
Enjoy your peonies months later!
If you were planning to use the peonies for a specific purpose, like Britt was for a wedding bouquet and you want the blooms to be mostly open. Just be aware that it will take the peonies a few days to open up after pulling them out of the fridge.
Peonies usually bloom in mid June in Alberta, Canada. We have been able to use this technique and revive peonies in late September.
Please note that the first time Britt did this, she did not make sure the peonies were clean and some of the peonies became moldy.
So we recommend if you need peonies for a specific reason then wrap up extras! The longer you need to keep them in the fridge, the odds are that more will become brown or moldy before you use them.
There are 3 main colours of peonies … white, light pink and dark pink. I find that the light pink and dark pink peonies preserved better. Mainly because after a longer period of time there is some browning and it is less noticeable on the pink shades of peonies.
Another thing I have noticed is that if the peonies were tightly closed and the buds were hard when I preserved them that they would not open once I tried to revive them. Therefore, it is crucial to snip the peony blooms when the petals are still closed but they are soft when you squeeze them.
Looking for another fun preserving idea for peonies? When the peonies are near their maximum of opening but the petals are falling off tie a bundle together and hang them to dry. We love to snip a big bundle and immediately hang them to dry rather than putting them in water. They look so pretty hanging! Also if you immediately hang them their leaves will preserve as well!