Dried roses make a beautiful addition to any flower arrangement, centerpiece, or just as an everyday decoration in your home. Fresh roses are pretty as well, but they don’t last forever, dried roses will last for a long time if they’re taken care of.
There are two main ways to dry roses, sand drying and air-drying. Air-drying is the simpler of the two, as it only requires you to hang the roses upside down. If you choose to hang your roses, let the roses stay out of water for a bit until the stems are dry enough to wrap a piece of wire or string around. Take a piece of wire or string and wrap or tie it around the stem, and then wrap or tie the opposite end of string or wire to a coat hanger or other object so that the rose is upside down. Hang the roses in a cool, dark place for one to three weeks, or until their dry. A less technical method would be to put the roses in a vase (they also look great if you have any old/antique bottles displayed in your home) without water. The roses will tend to wilt or open out more with the second method, but it doesn’t affect their beauty.
Sand drying is when you place the rose standing up in a box or container of sand, and then cover the rose gently with sand. This helps draw out the moisture and will also help the rose keep its shape. White colored sand that has been cleaned and sifted is the best to work with. Silica gel will also work for this type of drying.
Other methods of drying roses include clipping the petals of a fully opened rose, and laying them out on a newspaper or a few days. Dried rose petals can be used for numerous things like mixed in with potpourri, scattered around, placed in a dish by themselves, or whatever else you can think of.
Pressed flowers have been around for centuries, and are still popular today. To press roses, make sure it is fully opened, then place it between to sheets of wax paper, and then towards the back of a heavy book. The wax paper is used to make sure the pages of the book don’t get damaged, and to help the rose not stick so much. The rose should be flattened in a day or two, but you can leave it for longer if you prefer it be drier.
Cutting the rose for any particular drying method can really be up to you. Some people prefer the rose be cut to a certain length for different techniques, but I prefer the stem be left longer for most methods except pressing. The leaves on the stem are also up to you; you can either remove them, or leave them on.
Remember that drying roses will also make them even more delicate, so its best to handle them with care, or not handle them too much at all. Roses that have been dried when they were fully opened will be the most delicate, and you will more than likely loose a few petals over time. The colors of your roses will also change once they have dried, usually turning a more subtle hue from their original color, and in most cases white roses will turn a light brown color.