Preserving Blossoms

Thyme Everlasting

Preserving Blossoms It can be sad to see the beautiful blooms in your garden wilt and die. With a little effort, you can preserve the colors of your flowers and herbs for months or even years to come. These projects are a wonderful way for you and your child to discover the miracle of the garden:

AIR DRYING—The most practical approach. First, you need a warm, dark, and well-ventilated place (attic, closet, furnace room) where flowers and herbs can hang undisturbed for weeks at a time. Pick in the morning and simply hang upside down to dry, hanging large flowers individually and smaller blooms in rubber-banded bunches.

DESICCANT DRYING—Makes use of a material that absorbs moisture and hastens the drying process. The material (cornmeal, borax, sand or silica craft gel) is poured around and over a flower in a box, taking care that the flower is supported and the material reaches between the petals. After two weeks, brush away the material—do not use for herbs that will be used for food.

PRESSING—Preserves flowers in a flat state for use in paper decorating. Press flowers or leaves between two paper towels and place between two heavy, flat objects (encyclopedias, phone books). Wait several weeks and affix to the paper background of your choice.

FREEZING—Best method for herbs. Blanch small bunches one minute in boiling water. Plunge into ice water for two minutes, pat dry, and quickly freeze in plastic freezer bags. Also, add mint or lemon balm to ice cubes prior to freezing for an added flavor in your summer beverages!


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