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Friday, July 6, 2012

What's the use in growing a pretty flower

in your garden if you can't enjoy it in an arrangement?

Poppies only last a few hours in water unless you give them this special treatment.

Singe the Poppy stem over a flame for 10 seconds,
and hold the flower head away from heat.
I hold several stems at once over my gas cook top. 

I have placed these Shirley Poppies in water without treating them first.  I will show them to you after a few hours have passed.

 Even at this stage the blossoms can be revived, as long as the stomata (guard cells) have not collapsed.  Cut off about an inch from the stem and proceed as above.

The same treatment works for other flowers.  Hollyhocks are a good example. 

Hollyhocks have thicker stems... singe them for 20 seconds or longer.
This only works for side shoots.  The main stalk is too thick. 

Both Hollyhocks and Poppies, treated this way, will last longer in water than roses.

 By the way, can you name this charming flower?

Have a great weekend my dear
Blogging Friends.

Thank you also for your kind comments in my last post.
It is great to feel welcome.
You are the Best.




  1. Gina, were you a horticulturist in another life? Your knowledge about your flowers is very gratifying to me as there is so much information to learn about each variety and it is fun to read about it on your blog!

    I will now have to see if I can ID your plant speciman as it does not ring a bell in my head!
    I am entranced by the hairs on the exterior of the petals.

  2. As always, Gina, your photographs just glow with color. I also thank you for your tips on preparing poppy stems for long life indoors. I dream of having a garden, let me say it once again.

    I hope that your ease in showing that candle flame might mean that those fires we saw in your prior post might now be more under control?

    Best wishes from very hot and humid New York City.

  3. I can't name the flower, Gina, but it's very pretty and a gorgeous blue. And thanks for the tip - I'm going to try it out today with flowers from my rain-soaked garden!
    Greetings from a soggy London :))

  4. Dear Mary, When I was a very young girl, living in East Germany, I used to go scouting after a rain storm. I was looking for "cuttings" which had fallen from balconies and which I then planted. I always had lots of Geraniums blooming. My love affair with flowers and gardening began a very long time ago.

  5. Dear Frances, I know that my candle flames look a bit dangerous but all is under control. Even our fires in Utah are notas dangerous as they once were.
    Summer has begun and my garden is finally growing. If you find a few poppies give them a try but remember to re-cut their stems and always singe them again.

  6. Dear Karen, Wish I had a rain soaked garden, even if only for a day or two. Little water here and very little rain. We may be heading for our cyclical 5-year dry spell.
    Not many people grow this little flower but as you say, the blue is quite remarkable.

  7. Well, that certainly solves my problem of droopy poppies! Thx for the tip!

  8. Hello Patti, thanks for stopping by. GivePoppies a try, singing stems works for many other flowers.

  9. What an amazing trick..or way to preserve the poppies. I have tried various ways, and gave up. Now i will definately remember this one Gina. Thanks.
    I am in love with the bowl next to the flower arragements..the one with the little pink "sevres" roses..its divine Gina.
    Your posts are always so beautifuly presented . Your flower arrangements so pretty.
    I am just fitting in a post to let my dear blogging friends know that i havent forgetten them.
    Its hot and dry here-the ususal Alentejo summers. My poor roses are getting burnt with the heat and sun.
    Happy gardening days Gina.
    sending you wishes for a happy tuesday
    love val x x x x

  10. Who knew! I am thrilled to discover this little trick of yours. You always have such beautiful arrangements. Hope you are enjoying all the best of Summer.


  11. Dear Val, The bowl you like is Bohemian crystal made with a special process. Thank you so much for your sweet compliment. Flowers are always so willing to look pretty.

  12. Dear Jermaine, I have tried this trick with many flowers, some work some don't....but Poppies always work. Thank you for your visit.

  13. Hi Gina, I just learned this trick from a flower grower I have been getting cut flowers from. It works so well. Thank you for sharing it with your readers as poppies are just amazing to have in the house.

    Hope you are having a marvelous summer! xo

  14. Dear Gina,

    What a pleasure your blog is. Thank you! I don't have a blog and do regret that we can no longer copy a picture into our own album to enjoy again and again.


  15. Hi dear Gina, I remember some time ago you told me about this valuable secret to keep poppies longer...it's really an amazing tip! I hope all is well with you and that the garden über blooming....
    also, thank you so much for your lovely words and wishes for my boyfriend...he is back to normal now hopefully...
    much love from impossibly hot Andalucia

  16. what a wonderful tip Gina! Thank you! I used to grow a large amount of double poppies..beds and beds of them. The fire ants got ingenious and started taking all the seed after it was broadcast...and with several droughts, not poppies now. Yours are beautiful.


  17. Dear Georgianna, I would love to see how you photograph poppies. Have a wonderful weekend.
    ox, Gina

  18. Hello Anonymous, Thank you for your visit and lovely compliment. You'll just have to visit more often so you can see my pictures.

  19. Dear Lala, So happy to hear that Moncheri is feeling a little better. I hope that he continues to improve. Nothing more important than your health. Make sure that you also take good care of yourself. oxox, Gina

  20. Dear Theresa, what terrible little robbers you have in your garden. Have you tried broadcasting your seeds in late Fall? I do both. late Fall and early Sring, but then I haven't seen Fire Ants in my garden. I have everything else.
    Have a great weekend. ox, Gina

  21. I think everyone will consider this blog on flowers after reading this.

  22. Hello Online florist, Thank you for taking the time to visit and comment. You're in the right business...flowers make everyone happy.

  23. Hello, I have been enjoying your beautiful blog this afternoon after finding it earlier today. Is the flower borage?

    I have grown borage in the past because I love it's lovely blue color, and the flower is edible with a refreshing cucumber flavor.

    Thank you for the lovely afternoon visit!