Calla lilies are found throughout the world, but they originated in South Africa. The lilies contain white blossoms and are often used in wedding bouquets. Preserving the color and beauty of the calla lilies allows you to enjoy them for longer than a week. You can preserve the flower by drying it in silica gel, pressing it or hanging it to air dry. After you remove the moisture from the flower properly, you can enjoy the beauty.
things you’ll need:
- Silica gel
- Airtight container
- Baking sheet
- Acid-free paper
- Tissue paper
- Heavy books
- Elastic bands
- Cut the calla lilies to the desired length. Leave an inch or less of the stem to expedite the drying process.
- Add 1/2 inch of silica gel to an airtight container. The container will need to be large enough for the calla lilies so that they do not touch each other.
- Sprinkle more silica gel over the calla lilies so that they are covered completely. Add the gel slowly so that you avoid adding too much.
- Place the lid on the container. Store it in a location where the flowers will remain undisturbed. Check on the flowers after three days. They will feel crisp and they will no longer contain any moisture. Leave the calla lilies in the silica gel until they are dry.
- Pour the gel out of the container. Brush the gel off the flowers and remove them from the gel. Store the flowers in an airtight container until you are ready to use them.
- Lay the calla lilies on a baking sheet. Place them in the freezer until you are ready to dry them.
- Lay a sheet of cardboard down on a flat location. Place a sheet of acid free paper over the cardboard. Lay a sheet of tissue paper over the acid free paper.
- Place the calla lily over the tissue paper in the position that you wish to dry it. Place another sheet of tissue paper over the calla lily. Add a sheet of acid-free paper on top of the tissue paper, and then lay a piece of cardboard on top.
- Place a stack of three to four heavy books on top of the cardboard. This will press the calla lily. Remove the lily after two weeks.
- Pick the calla lilies once the dew evaporates. Trim the stems down to 1 inch.
- Divide the blooms into bunches that consist of four flowers. Tie the bunches with an elastic band so that they remain together.
- Hang the flower bunches upside down in a dark and warm area. The basement works well for drying the flowers. Hang the bunches at least 12 inches apart so that the air can circulate around the flowers.
- Remove the flowers once they dry completely. The calla lilies should feel dry and brittle.
Tips & Warnings
Silica gel is available at most craft store. It consists of small beads and does not look like a gel.
Keep silica gel away from young children and pets. The gel can be fatal if consumed in a large amount.