How to Take Care of Cut Sunflowers: 10 Easy-to-Follow Steps

Are you trying to figure out how to take care of cut sunflowers? If you’re planning to create a long-lasting sunflower bouquet, today’s your lucky day.

Although sunflower (Helianthus annuus) blooms are fragrance-free, they never fail to add boldness, as well as a strikingly rich color to any flower arrangement. You’ll never have to worry about them causing an overwhelmingly strong perfume in your indoor areas.

To top it all off, you can also make them look fresh, healthy, and beautiful for about a week or more if you use some preservatives and if you place them at room temperature.

 

How to Take Care of Cut Sunflowers: 10 Easy-to-Follow Steps

10 Steps on How to Take Care of Cut Sunflowers

Extending the life of your cut sunflowers starts with the cutting. In order to achieve optimum vase life, you need to know when and how to cut them. Here’s what you need to remember:

 

Step #1: The best time to cut them is when they’re almost open

As soon as you notice that your sunflowers’ ray petals are already perpendicular to their flower disks, it’s time to cut them. If you can, it’s best to plan a day ahead before they open.

 

Step #2: Water them a day before you cut them

Check to see if the ground is dry. If it is, you need to make sure that your sunflowers are well-hydrated before you cut them. For this reason, it’s best to water them one day before you are supposed to cut them.

 

Step #3: Prepare your materials for cutting

On the day that you plan to cut your sunflowers, be sure that all of your materials are ready – a clean and sharp knife and two clean buckets. One bucket should be filled half full with warm water (about 100˚F to 110˚F), and the other should be filled with water that’s mixed with holding preservative.

 

Step #4: Mix the holding solution according to the manufacturer’s instructions

In case you’re wondering how to prepare the holding solution, you simply need to make use of a floral preservative that contains sucrose, an acidifying agent, as well as an antimicrobial agent. The floral preservative works to provide energy for the plant, the acidifying agent promotes hydration and balances the pH level, while the antimicrobial agent prevents clogging to take place in the plant’s stems.

Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions when you’re mixing the solution. Underdosing your sunflowers will not do anything to increase their vase life. On the other hand, overdosing can cause damage to your sunflowers.

 

Step #5: Cut the sunflowers early in the morning

Make sure that you do the cutting in the morning, before 10 a.m. Cutting them when later in the day will cause them to dry out quickly. Unless you’re willing to run the risk of having wilted sunflowers in your vase, make sure that you cut them within the first few hours after dawn when they’re still fresh from a whole night’s rejuvenation of water supply.

 

Step #6: Cut them at an angle

Cutting your sunflower stems at an angle will provide them with more surface area to absorb more water. It also keeps the stems from resting flat on the bottom of your flower vase. Make sure that your cut stems are approximately 30 inches in terms of length.

 

Step #7: Place the sunflowers in the bucket of clean and warm water immediately after cutting them

Sunflowers need to be kept in water to avoid wilting. For this reason, you need to stick the sunflowers in the water immediately after you cut them and place the bucket in the shade. This reduces the shock of being cut while keeping them hydrated.

 

Step #8: Once indoors, place the sunflowers inside the bucket with the holding solution

To make sure that the flowers are conditioned, place them in the bucket with the holding solution as soon as you bring them indoors. Let them sit in a cool location for several hours before you arrange them in a vase.

 

Step #9: Arrange them in a vase

Once they’re conditioned, fill your flower vase with the same type of holding solution. Make sure that it’s half full and that no leaves are below the water line once you place your cut sunflowers inside it. Arrange your flowers.

 

Step #10: Change the water on a daily basis

To keep your sunflowers healthy and gorgeous, make sure that you change the water in the vase every day to prevent bacteria from building up, reduce the unpleasant smell, and to slow down the process of decomposition.

 

Grow Your Plants in a Semi Pro Greenhouse!

Greens aficionados who intend to bring their gardening efforts to the next level decide to grow their plants inside a semi pro greenhouse. Aside from eliminating the need to make emergency preparations in case of inclement weather, a semi pro greenhouse also provides a barrier of protection against bugs and animals that constantly threaten to destroy them.

What’s more, a semi pro greenhouse also allows you to manipulate the temperature and humidity levels in the enclosed space so that your plants can enjoy the best growing conditions. Gardening enthusiasts love greenhouse gardening because they can always extend their plants’ growing seasons and it allows them to plant practically anything they like!

 

The Takeaway

Now that you know how to take care of cut sunflowers, it’s time to put your skills to the test. Get out there and cut your favorite blooms to add color and cheer to your indoor spaces!

 

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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