3 Ways to Air Dry Flowers
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3 Ways to Air Dry Flowers

With these 3 ways to air dry flowers you will find a method that works for your next craft or flower arranging project.  Air drying flowers is easy and a great way to preserve the blooms for the coming months to brighten up your home.

Finding the best flowers and foliage to dry is trial and error.  Some flowers will retain more colour and shape using the desiccant method rather than on racks.

Air Drying Flowers on Drying Racks

Air drying flowers on racks.

Choose how much of the foliage you would like to dry with the flower then cut off the rest with sharp scissors or pruners.  Some types of foliage will dry better than others.  The best way of drying foliage is iron pressing.  The method is at the end of this post.

If you want the flowerhead whole be aware that if you cut too close to the back of the flower the petals may dislodge.  It is best to leave a short stem on the back.

Lay the flowers face up on the drying racks leaving space between each then place in an area of low humidity with good air flow.

You can also use trays lined with baking paper if you don’t have drying racks or if you have a cookie cooling rack spare that will also do.

Air drying flowers on racks will take 3 days to 2 weeks for the flowers to completely dry depending on the time of year.

These enclosed drying racks come in handy for drying food as well as flowers. Find them at Amazon. (Paid link)

Air Drying Flowers in Desiccants

Drying flowers in Kitty Litter
Before and after drying in kitty litter.

This method usually achieves the best results for colour however, you do have to be careful the delicate petals are not destroyed when burying or retrieving the flower.

There are a few different desiccants that can be used such as clean sand, silica gel mixed with sand or recycled paper kitty litter. These materials will draw out the moisture quickly giving a better result.

Recycled paper kitty litter (paid link) is the easiest method and the litter can be used as intended after the flowers have dried.

Use either a deep tray or container that is wide enough to lay your flower flat.  Fill the container with an inch of litter then lay the flower down on top.  Gently lay more litter over the top so you have another inch above the flower.

Leave to dry for 1 to 2 weeks then gently remove the litter.  When you get to the flower it may be necessary to use tweezers to pick the litter off the blooms.

Air Drying Flowers by Hanging

Drying roses by hanging in a closet.

This works particularly well with roses, especially red roses which hold their colour well using this method.  Lavender is another common flower that will dry well this way.

Cut long stemmed roses then snip off the foliage.  The longer the stems the better especially if you are planning on presenting them in a tall vase.

Tie twine or kitchen string (paid link) tightly around the ends of the stems leaving a long length of string.  Hang upside down in a closet tying the string around the rod.  The rose will scent the closet as it dries.

The roses should be completely dry within 2 weeks.  Spray the blooms and stems liberally with hairspray to help preserve the colour.  Once dry they are ready to add to your dried flower arrangement.


How to Preserve Foliage

This method preserves the flexibility of the foliage but will work better with some leaves than others. Place the foliage between two sheets of baking paper then press with a medium to hot iron.  Use fresh sheets of baking paper for each pressing of foliage.


Store air dried flowers in air tight containers until ready to use.  Spray with hairspray to help preserve your flowers and have fun trying different methods and blooms!

Looking for a beautiful vase to display your dried flowers? Try this top rated set from Amazon. (Paid link)

To Save or Print this guide on 3 ways to air dry flowers, click the button below for the PDF File.

Looking for more craft inspiration? Try these Craft Ideas or these guides for Air Drying Lavender, Press Drying Flowers, creating a Patchwork Throw Pillow or a Rice Heat Pack.

Are you a homebody? You might like this Homesteading guide.

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