Get the most out of your strawflowers by cutting fresh stems and wiring little stems/flower heads as well. Wired strawflowers will last forever in a vase, and never droop, and they can also be bent and manipulated to use in wreaths and other creative designs.
Strawflowers... as a cut flower for drying... can sometimes be a bit tricky...The first flushes of blooms at the beginning of the season should give you lovely, long, strong stems. But, at the same time... if you wait too long for those stems to stiffen up, you may risk the flower over-developing, so sometimes it is preferable to cut them early and wire them.
Strawflowers are also multi-branching plants and sometimes they can have beautiful little offshoots of flowers, but with barely any stem at all, so again, wiring then can make them more useful. This is how to get the most out of your plants...
HOW TO WIRE STRAWFLOWERS
- Start with a packet of strawflower seeds so that you can grow these magnificent flowers at home.
- Cut and hang-dry healthy, sturdy stems.
- Throughout the season, pick little flower heads, offshoots, or clustered blooms... use these for garlands or pop them on wires.
- Using small, sharp snips cut the stem off completely, while the flower is still fresh. Take a florist wire and insert into the base of the flower head... just a couple of millimetres. Try not to insert too far as you will risk poking the wire through to the other side.
- Pop the wired flower in a jar and store in a dry, mild place, taking care not to disturb them. In just a couple of weeks, the flowers will have shrunk and naturally sealed themselves onto the wire. No glue is necessary.
- If, over time, you are finished with the flowers, you can pull really hard to remove them, pop the flower heads in your compost and re-use the wires.
QUICK TIPS FOR GROWING STRAWFLOWERS
1 ~ You can sow your seeds directly where you would like them to grow or start them in seed trays… why not try a bit of both and see what works best for you. Remember to sow seeds on the surface because they need light to germinate.
2 ~ Keep seeds moist during the germination process. Since they are sown at the surface, they can dry out quickly. Sometimes I sprinkle out some coir peat where I want to sow and then sprinkle the seeds on top of that. Coir peat (you can buy bricks of this for as little as $2) is really good at holding moisture.
3 ~ Unfortunately, slugs and snails love strawflowers too. Keep an eye out, especially after it rains, and try out one of many natural control methods for these pests.
4 ~ Strawflowers are native to the grasslands of Australia. This means that they can handle poor soils and tough conditions, but they do enjoy a good soil with plenty of rich, organic matter.
5 ~ Don’t crowd your plants. Strawflowers like full sun and good air circulation to prevent problems with fungus and mildew.
6 ~ The more you cut, the more you get! One of the reasons I love these plants so much… keep harvesting your flowers and you will be rewarded with more and more.