Flower lovers beware; there is a hidden menace to the freshness and longevity of your stems lurking in your own home!
If you enjoy having a vase of flowers on display around your home, there is one very important thing you need to keep in mind – don’t place them near to your fruit bowl. Why exactly is this? It’s because ripening fruit emits a gas called ethylene which can cause cut flowers to age more rapidly, making them more susceptible to wilting and withering before their time.
Ethylene can affect different species of flowers in different ways. For example in carnations it can cause quicker wilting of petals whilst in delphiniums it can result in petals being shed. For orchids, ethylene can cause discoloration of petals.
As well as being the by-product of fresh fruit, ethylene is also caused by cigarette smoke and exhaust fumes. Whilst the latter isn’t likely to be an issue, if you are a smoker try not to smoke next to any flowers you have placed around your home.
Ethylene isn’t the only thing that can be a silent killer for fresh flowers but it’s perhaps one of the lesser-known risks. Other things you’ll want to avoid include draughts, central heating and direct sunlight. For more information on caring for your fresh flowers and prolonging their lifespan as much as possible, be sure to read our extensive flower care guide. That way you'll be able to keep your stems fresh and pretty for as long as possible.