Drying flowers is a great way to preserve them for long-lasting home decor or craft projects. With the right technique, you can dry flowers quickly and easily. The fastest, easiest methods allow you to dry flowers in just a few days so you can start enjoying them right away.
When drying flowers, speed is important because you want to halt the decaying process before the flowers start to wilt. Removing moisture quickly prevents mold growth and preserves the flowers’ color and shape. There are a few techniques that allow fast drying without compromising quality.
This article will discuss the fastest and easiest ways to dry flowers at home without specialized equipment. We’ll cover drying flowers using silica sand, air-drying with hanging bundles, and using a microwave or oven. We’ll also look at tips for preparing flowers properly and storing dried flowers to maximize longevity.
Follow these fast flower drying methods and you’ll be able to enjoy beautiful, crisp dried flowers in no time.
Reasons to Dry Flowers
Here are some of the top reasons to dry flowers at home:
– Preserve flowers from a garden or florist arrangement to enjoy their beauty longer
– Craft dried flower wreaths, garlands, potpourri and other decorations
– Give homemade dried flower gifts
– Commemorate special occasions by drying flowers from events or ceremonies
– Decorate for the seasons using dried flowers and grasses
– Showcase favorite flowers that don’t last long when fresh
Drying allows you to extend the life of flowers so you can appreciate their colors, shapes and scents for months or even years to come.
Fastest Drying Methods
Using Silica Sand
One of the fastest ways to dry flowers at home is using silica sand or silica gel. This substance absorbs moisture rapidly from the flowers.
To dry flowers in silica:
– Obtain silica sand or silica gel packets. These are available at craft stores or online.
– Clean and dry the flower heads you want to preserve. Remove any leaves or stems.
– Place an inch of silica sand or gel in an airtight container. Glass jars or plastic containers with lids work well.
– Place the flower heads face up in the silica, spacing them out so they don’t touch.
– Add more silica over and around the flowers until completely covered. Leave about an inch of space at the top.
– Seal the container completely shut.
– Leave the flowers undisturbed for 2-7 days. Check daily until dried to your liking.
The moisture-absorbing power of the silica will draw water out of the flowers quickly, drying them in just a few days. Replace the silica sand after drying a batch of flowers to use it again. This versatile method works for most flower types.
Hanging Flower Bundles
Hanging flowers to air dry in bundles is another fast and easy technique. The circulating air dries the petals rapidly.
Follow these steps:
– Trim flower stems to 4-6 inches. Leave some stem attached to hang and bundle the flowers.
– Gather 5-10 stems together and tie the stems tightly with twine, wire or elastic bands.
– Tie several bundles if drying a lot of flowers.
– Hang the bundles upside down in a warm, dry spot with good airflow.
– Leave 2-5 inches between bundles if hanging multiple clusters.
– Leave the flowers to dry for 1-2 weeks. Petals should feel crisp yet supple when ready.
– Check frequently and retie stems if bundles start to loosen.
The hanging method is fastest for small, thin petaled flowers like lavender. Heavier flowers like roses may take a little longer.
Using a microwave is one of the quickest ways to dry flowers. With just a few minutes on high heat, moisture evaporates from the blooms rapidly.
Microwave drying works best for smaller flowers. Follow these steps:
– Place a single layer of flower heads between two paper towels.
– Microwave on high for 1-2 minutes.
– Check the flowers and microwave in 30 second intervals until dried.
– Let cool completely between microwave sessions. Flowers will crisp up more as they cool.
– Repeat with additional flowers, using fresh paper towels each time.
– Pack dried flowers in an airtight container with desiccant packs to preserve.
The microwave produces quick results, but flowers can become brittle and change color. Use lower power settings for better results. Rotate flowers and rearrange petals as needed while drying.
Using a conventional or toaster oven is another fast drying technique. The low, sustained heat evaporates moisture gradually.
To oven dry flowers:
– Place flower heads on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicon mat.
– Set the oven to the lowest temperature, usually 170-200 F.
– Leave the oven door propped open slightly to allow moisture to escape.
– Dry the flowers for 30-60 minutes, checking frequently.
– Remove flowers quickly when dried to prevent overcooking. Let cool completely.
– Use desiccant packs when storing to remove any remaining moisture.
The oven setup requires attention, but consistently provides crisp, shapely flowers. Use care when removing flowers, as they become fragile when dry.
Tips for Drying Flowers Fast
Follow these tips for the best, fastest flower drying:
Choose Flowers Wisely
Some flowers work better than others when drying rapidly:
– Choose flowers with low moisture content like lavender, statice, strawflowers, marigolds and baby’s breath.
– Avoid very juicy flowers like roses, peonies, dahlias and carnations.
– Dry hardy herbs like lavender and rosemary on the stem.
– For roses, remove the inner bud and petals first for fastest drying.
Prepare the Flowers
Proper prep is crucial for quick, quality drying:
– Choose newly opened, undamaged flowers in their prime.
– Remove leaves, stems, pollen sacs or reproductive parts. Just the flower heads are needed.
– For rosette flowers like roses, trim the base of the flower head for better airflow.
– Cut stems to 4-6 inches for hanging bundles.
– Dip flowers for 30 seconds in a dilute glycerin solution to preserve color and flexibility. Use 1 part glycerin to 3 parts water.
Dry Rapidly and Evenly
Fast, even drying prevents mold and deterioration:
– Dry flowers quickly before they start to wilt.
– Use silica, hanging, microwaves or other quick methods.
– Dry flowers in a warm area around 100° F with low humidity.
– Allow space for air circulation all around flowers.
– Use fans to speed drying if needed in humid climates.
Store Flowers Carefully
Proper storage keeps dried flowers looking vibrant:
– Allow flowers to dry completely before storage. Brittle petals indicate readiness.
– Pack dried flowers loosely in boxes or breathable fabric bags.
– Place mini desiccant packets in storage containers to absorb excess moisture.
– Store dried flowers in a cool, dark place away from direct sun and moisture.
Drying Different Flower Types
Not all flowers dry the same. Here are some specific tips for getting the best results drying various flower varieties quickly:
Roses have a high moisture content. For quick drying:
– Choose partially opened buds. Fully open flowers take longer.
– Remove inner petals and reproductive parts. Keep outer petals intact.
– Hang bundles of roses upside down to dry evenly.
– Use silica sand or gel for speedy moisture absorption.
– Expect drying to take 1-2 weeks for best results.
Lavender dries rapidly. For best preservation:
– Cut lavender stems when flowers are newly opening.
– Dry small bundles of lavender hanging upside down.
– You can also air dry loose lavender flower heads on a screen.
– Dry in a warm area out of direct sun. Drying takes 1-5 days.
Peonies have delicate, lush blooms. To dry:
– Select peonies that have just fully opened.
– Remove stamens, leaves and stems.
– Gently place flower head face up on paper towels. Cover with more towels.
– Press and pat gently to absorb moisture. Change towels as needed.
– Allow at least 1-2 weeks for thorough drying.
Dahlias need extra care to preserve their shapely petals:
– Cut dahlias when fully open and vibrantly colored.
– Suspend upside down to dry without pressure on petals.
– Gently wrap each flower head separately in tissue paper.
– Check frequently and carefully reposition petals while drying.
– Display in a vase for short term use. Fragile when dried.
To dry these full, delicate blooms:
– Choose newly opened hydrangea heads with best color.
– Remove some excess florets if the head is very dense.
– Dry upside down or lay individually on towels face up.
– Allow 1-3 weeks for thorough drying.
– Spray with acrylic sealer if desired to preserve color.
|Lavender||Cut stems, bundle||1-5 days|
|Statice||Cut stems, air dry||1-3 weeks|
|Roses||Remove inner petals, hang bundles||1-2 weeks|
Drying flowers at home is an easy crafting project that allows you to preserve beautiful blooms. With the right techniques, you can dry flowers quickly in as little as a day or two so you can start using them in arrangements and decorations right away.
Methods like air drying, using desiccants, microwaving, and oven drying are all fast options for removing moisture from flowers before they start to degrade. Coupled with proper preparation and storage, these methods allow you to rapidly preserve flowers at peak vibrancy.
Understand the unique properties of different flower varieties in order to dry them successfully. With some trial and error, you’ll be able to quickly dry a wide range of flowers for year-round enjoyment.