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Helpful hint: DIY flower food prolongs blooms

FARGO - I like to display fresh, cheery flowers in my home year round.

But sometimes, the gorgeous stems quickly wilt.

With a dose of flower food, cut blooms stay alive longer, offering their beauty for a few more days.

The packets that typically come with flowers work well, but you can make a similar mixture at home if you run out of the packets.

The sugar feeds the flowers, while the citrus acidifies the water and bleach keeps bacteria at bay.

Remember to trim any foliage below the water line to lessen microbial growth and cut flowers at an angle with sharp sheers for maximum water intake.

Cut flower preservative

Makes enough for one standard-size vase of flowers


1 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon bleach

2 teaspoons lemon or lime juice


Add all ingredients to a clean vase filled with warm water. Add the cut flowers and display them away from bright sunlight and heat.

Sources: and Better Homes and Gardens

Readers can reach Forum reporter Anna G. Larson at (701) 241-5525

Each Sunday we offer up a quick tip on anything from money-saving tricks to household how-tos. To share your own tip, please email

Anna G. Larson

Anna G. Larson is a features reporter with The Forum who writes a weekly column featuring stylish people in Fargo-Moorhead. Larson graduated from North Dakota State University with a degree in journalism and joined The Forum in July 2012. She's a Fargo native who enjoys travel, food, baking, fashion, animals, coffee and all things Midwestern. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter: @msannagrace 

(701) 241-5525