Dried and preserved flowers and foliage are generally very low maintenance and will continue to look beautiful for many months (and sometimes years) if properly handled and cared for. Please note that some products are very delicate and fragile so require careful handling.
You must keep dried and preserved flowers and foliage away from water and damp environments. Make sure the vase or container you are planning to display your flowers and/or foliage in is completely dry as any residual moisture can cause mould to grow. We recommend using a vase or container with a relatively wide neck as restricted airflow can also cause mould to grow, particularly in combination with a damp environment. Humidity can also cause natural products to decompose and they may start developing mould, so we advise keeping your flowers and/or foliage away from humid environments and out of direct sunlight as the heat from the sun can cause them to sweat.
Dried flowers may lose their colour over time which is part of the natural ageing process and part of their beauty and appeal. Keeping them away from sources of bright light (including sunlight) will help to maintain their colour. Over time your flowers and foliage will gather dust so we recommend using a feather duster, compressed air spray or hairdryer on a cool, slow setting to freshen them up. As they age, flower petals may become brittle so do take care when handling. After a few years your floral arrangement may need replacing if it begins to look a little shabby.
If you are not planning on using your products straight away they can be stored for months (and sometimes years for certain products) if stored correctly, but please note that natural coloured products will fade over time. Do not store the products in plastic sealed containers – cardboard or wooden boxes are preferable. We advise keeping them in the house and not a shed. Silica gel sachets can also help too in prolonging the storage life of dried flowers and foliage. If you are storing any dried seed heads, especially cereal and seed crops, ensure they are protected from mice who also like to nest in boxes of fluffy pampas, so make sure storage containers are sealed. You can use nontoxic insect repellent or cedar chips when storing dried florals to prevent insects such as moths nesting in them.
Caring for your pampas grass
With the exception of a few varieties, which you will pay a premium for, most pampas grass will moult (shed fluff) as part of its natural growth cycle (the coarser grainier types less so than the fluffier types). Generally this only happens when the pampas is knocked or moved. When you receive your pampas grass stems we recommend unwrapping them outside, hold the stem just below the plume and roll the stem quite vigorously a few times between your palms to open up the plume and get rid of some loose fluff. The plumes will continue to open up over a few days. They can also benefit from a little sunshine to make them fluffy or alternatively you can use a hairdryer on a cool, slow setting to make the plumes fuller. Once the pampas is in position, hair spray can be used to fix the plumes and reduce shedding, however this isn’t recommended if the pampas is going to be repacked and sent on to your customers. Your pampas can last for many years if properly cared for.
Preserved florals are often stored damp so it is normal for them to feel damp when you receive your order. They should dry out within a few hours once they are removed from the packaging. Preserved products may also have an odour at first which will gradually dissipate.
Preserved florals do not react well to sudden changes in temperature and humidity and this may cause the preservative to come out of the product. If this happens it can be gently wiped off with a dry cloth. Also please note that colour may transfer so keep away from clothing and surfaces to avoid staining.