Growing up in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, I have had the privilege of being surrounded by a unique variety of flowers. From large hydrangeas (which grow almost everywhere) to small, special wild flowers, summertime came with fresh colors every year. However, all flowers eventually wilt and die, leaving us all with the bland colors of winter, the depressing weather, and the memories of a once happy, well-lit summer. Due to this fact, I have enjoyed preserving flowers through a variety of methods in order to preserve their natural beauty just a little bit longer.
One commonly used method to dry flowers for display is by hanging them upside down in the air, normally in a dark room/closet. Since the flower head would naturally become too heavy for the weak stem (and therefore fall off), drying the flowers upside down provides the stalks with a way to support the flowers; during the drying process the weight of the flower head is not being supported by the stem (if dried upside down), which allows the stem to harden enough to support the dried flower head once the process is complete. This will leave you with dried flowers that aren’t drooping. The air drying method works well with many different types of flowers, including rose blossoms.
Another way to make the beauty of summer last a bit longer is by drying flowers in small containers of sand. To do this, you will need some sand and a shallow container; the sand should be enough to fill the bottom of the container and also enough to completely cover the head of the flower you are attempting to preserve. This method works excellently with Queen Anne’s lace, and other similarly shaped flowers. Sand drying works best with these flowers if you are planning to utilize them to form a wreath. Since no support will be provided for any stems (since you are only submerging the heads of the flowers into the sand and not hanging the stems like in the previous method), they will probably not dry strong enough to support the flowers on their own. Therefore, clipping the flowers relatively close to the head (with just enough stem left to employ into your wreathe) will work best with this method. Simply place the blossoms face down into the sand pit and cover them with sand. Wait about a month; the drying time will vary with the variety of flowers.
A third but slightly more expensive way to carry some of summer’s glory into the other seasons is by using glycerin. This method works best with hydrangeas, for it preserves their beauty even longer than simply drying them would. Horizontally cut the hydrangeas stems or mash the bottoms of the in order to maximize the solution intake. Make the preserving solution with one part glycerin for every two parts of water and place the hydrangeas in a vase with the solution. Be sure to cut off all leaves from your flowers. The hydrangeas should suck up the solution, thereby distributing the solution throughout the flower. If done correctly, the blooms should last about a year before beginning to lose their brilliance.
Information in this article was taken from personal experience the Columbian.com