I’m going to be honest, I use to think anything dried flower related was a grandma thing. When I was young potpourri was all the rage. My mom had it everywhere, and my grandma did too. So, I just associated it with, to put it bluntly, being old. (My mom wasn’t old, but I was young, so anyone over 20 seemed old to me) And while I’m not ready to jump on the potpourri train . . . yet, I’ve had a softening of heart towards dried flower arrangements.
Maybe I’m getting old.
But I digress.
The why of growing dried flowers
My main goal with drying flowers will be to use them to decorate and enjoy in fall, and again in winter after all the Christmas items have been put away. And also as gift arrangements. The months of January through March can be very dreary, and having beautiful dried arrangements around the house will help cheer up the space.
Another bonus, is instead of spending money on faux plants that add up in cost fast, you’re able to grow your own decor for dollars. That’s a huge savings! Plus, they’re original. Your decor will be unique to your home only.
My Drying Method
There are a few different methods to drying flowers. Some more complicated than others. Because I simply want to hang dry my flowers, I’ll be choosing ones that work well with that method. If I was crafting, or working with resin, I may use a flower press. But for this project, it will be mostly hang drying.
While you can get drying racks or hangers, you can also find a stick, take a long string, tie it to each side of the stick, and hang it on a wall or from a rafter in the ceiling. Simply tie your flowers to that!
Or do like I did for roses a few years past, simply tie them to a long string.
While drying or in a bouquet, they’re just so romantic and dreamy.
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I also have a drying rack I keep by the fire in winter that makes a great large quantity drying space in harvest season. This was from last year when I was drying herbs to use in my kitchen. If you want to learn how to dry and store herbs too, check out this post.
Things you might need:
Which flowers work for drying
The best flowers for drying are the that have a small water content. And if they have a sturdy blossom, that’s even better.
Another tip, always dry a few more than you think you’ll need. It’s common to lose a few blooms to breakage, or browning too much. Do a little extra so you’re sure to have enough for your projects.
Favorite top 8 dried flower list:
This is such a fun plant and grew so well for me in my new Tennessee garden. Easy to grow and maintain, they’re almost a guarantee for a cut flower garden, and to dry.
Oh Zinnias, again, another favorite and in my top two for easy growing and because of all the beautiful colors and varieties available.
This is a stunning flower in almost any arrangement. They drape so elegantly. You can dry upside down or right side up so you can still have that delicate draping in your floral projects.
This are so easy to grow. They’re pretty much plant and forget. And you can trim and harvest and the plant will continue to spout new flowers. You can harvest many flowers from just a few seeds. I direct sewed in May, and I’m in zone 6. Dry upside down when freshly bloomed.
I’ve grown these for years. These flowers are so fun because they basically dry themselves. Once bloomed, you touch them and they feel like . . . well straw! And the colors stay so bright on these, because they essentially bloom already dried. They are so pretty and grow well in many different environments. Strawflowers also have long stems, perfect for making larger arrangements. They are very tough dried flowers, and easy to work with.
When I was first married I use to dry all the bouquets of roses Travis would bring home to me for various birthdays and such. I’d hang them to dry in our downstairs pantry and they added a touch of whimsy to the space.
Not only does lavender work well dried, it’s a great filler flower in fresh-cut bouquets, and can also be used in homemade bath and body products, tinctures, and medicinal purposes.
Yarrow isn’t just a pretty flower, it’s actually part of the herb family. This flower is used for fever, common cold, hay fever, loss of appetite, and gastrointestinal discomfort, among other things. Some people even chew the fresh leaves to relieve toothache.
So dry it for floral arrangements, and even to dip your feet into experimenting tinctures.
And there are many, many more flowers to dry
This is just a beginning list of flowers that you are able to dry. Not sure if a flower you already love will dry? Just try it!
When to harvest your flowers to dry
Typically, the best time to harvest is mid to late morning. After the dew is gone, but before the heat of the day comes and the flowers begin to wilt and not hold their shape.
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