Breathing New Life into Valentine’s Day Roses

Valentine’s day was over three weeks ago.  Did you by chance receive some beautiful and fragrant roses then that now look more like this?  Do you wonder if there’s anything that dried roses are good for other than the trash can?

The above is what mine look like.  However, I was hesitant to throw then away.  After all, I think roses are expensive (around $1/each when they’re “on sale”), but Dave surprised me with two dozen this year.  It would nice to keep them around longer.  They don’t lose their beauty when they are dried.  I’ve experimented with turning some of them into potpourri and others into an art display.

Potpourri

I’ve never made potpourri before, so after reading many different recipes, I tried to make a simplified version.  The potpourri I made consists of dried roses, dried orange peels, and rosemary essential oil.  I already had the roses and I purchased the rosemary essential oil from the new Muji in Boston, so all I had to make were the dried orange peels.  I split the peels of two oranges into roughly six pieces each and dried them slowly in the oven at 200°F for about two hours until they were dried.  Then I tore up each piece into smaller pieces.  Once the orange peels were ready, I made two jars of potpourri.

The jar with the white cap has the whole dried roses mixed with orange peels.  I put a drop of essential oil into each rose, put the roses into the jar, and filled in the gaps with the orange peels.  The jar with the green lid has just petals layered with orange peels.  I put a layer of petals down, 1-2 drops of essential oil, and then a layer of orange peels and repeated this until the jar was full.  Once both jars were full, I put the lid on each and shook them.  At this stage, I took a whiff of the potpourri.  I could smell the essential oil, but the orange scent was very weak, so I left both of the jars sealed overnight.  In the morning, the the orange scent was quite strong and infused with the rosemary.  I’ve put one of the jars in our bathroom and it’s certainly made it more fragrant.

Dried Roses Display

I still had a lot of dried roses left after making the potpourri, so I used a dozen of the remaining ones along with their leaves to make the following display.  I feel the dozen dried roses look just as beautiful as the fresh bouquet.

I hope these experiments have given you some ideas on how to continue enjoying your flowers after they’ve reached the point when many people would normally throw them away!

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