Stop tulips drooping by using a pin or a penny02/08/2023
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Tulips are a sign of spring and they are beautifully grown in the garden or cut and placed in a vase to add some colour to a room. But a bunch of tulips can droop very quickly. Here are how to stop tulips drooping.
In a previous episode of This Morning, gardening enthusiast Daisy Payne visited a tulip hill in Hillington, Norfolk and showed viewers how to make stunning cut flower displays inside their homes.
Tulips, however, tend to droop, and the amateur gardener was on hand to share her tips to make tulips stand straight.
If you’ve bought tulips from a supermarket, you’ll notice they don’t come with any cut flower food.
Most probably, you’ll trim the stems and place them into a vase of water, but the reason why tulips start to droop a few days later is that they are thirsty.
Daisy said: “The first tip I’m going to give you is if you trim the ends off at an angle, the stem will be able to absorb more water.
“It might sound obvious, but keep them topped up with fresh water, every couple of days and when you do that, make sure you re-trim the stems too.”
Where the vase of tulips is positioned in the house, also matters: “Keep them away from fruit, as fruit release ethylene gas that will make your tulips fade.
“Another tip I will give you is to keep your tulips out of direct sunlight,” Daisy said.
One old wife’s tale suggests putting a penny coin into the vase of water for an hour before adding the cut tulips. Daisy tried this hack and it didn’t stop the tulips from drooping.
Another way to stop tulips from drooping is by putting a pin through the stem.
For flowers with hollow stems like tulips, before you place them in the water, get a pin or safety pin and poke it through the stem, right at the top, just underneath the base of the flower head.
Why? As soon as the flowers are in the water air bubbles will rise up the stem. Once the air bubble is inside it blocks the water from reaching the flower head.
As a result, the flower doesn’t get the required amount of water and starts drooping.
The hole next to the flower head acts as an exit for the air bubble, thereby keeping the hollow stem block free.
Since supermarket-bought tulips don’t come with a sachet of cut flower food, you can create your own.
Pour a glug of a fizzy drink into the water – sparking water, tonic water or even lemonade. Clear fizzy drinks are best unless you want coloured water.
The sugar in the fizzy drink helps perk the flower up, similar to cut flower food.
Finally, choosing the right vase can also help the tulips stand upright. Taller vases with smaller necks force the stems to stay straight. A jug also works well if you haven’t got a tall vase.
If drooping tulips bother you, you can always gently tie a piece of string around the stems.
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