How to Make Flower Gel

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Use floral water gel to simulate water in a floral arrangement.
Use floral water gel to simulate water in a floral arrangement. (Image: Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

Flower gel, also known as water gel, comes in pellet and bead form. The small polymer gel pellets absorb water and swell to many times their original size. Over time, the pellets dry out and shrink down to their original size, thereby making them reusable. Some water gel is sold as beads that look very similar to the glass beads used in some floral arrangements, whereas the small gel pellets meld together to look like water. Flower gel comes in an array of colors. The gel is suitable for use with live flowers and silk arrangements.

Things You'll Need

  • Water gel beads or pellets
  • Large microwave-safe mixing bowl
  • Water
  • Microwave
  • Colander
  • Transparent flower vase
  • Flowers

Pour a package of water gel beads or pellets into a large microwave-safe mixing bowl.

Add warm water to the flower gel pellets. Fill the entire bowl with water. If necessary, you can pour out extra water once the pellets have absorbed the water.

Put the bowl of gel pellets or beads and water into the microwave and heat the bowl on "low" for three minutes.

Allow the flower gel to sit for five minutes after microwaving is complete. This will provide the gel with extra time to absorb the water.

Remove the bowl from the microwave and pour the flower gel into a large colander to drain off the excess water.

Pour the flower gel into an empty transparent vase. Once the vase is three-quarters full, insert and arrange the flowers. Use this gel with freshly cut flowers or silk flowers.

Add 1/2 cup of water per day to prevent the gel from drying out. You may need to add a bit more water for larger arrangements, particularly if you're using the flower gel with freshly cut flowers, as they will absorb some of the water. If your polymer gel beads appear cloudy or discolored after a few days, pour them into a colander and rinse with warm water.

Tips & Warnings

  • Polymer gel pellets are also found in maxi pads. Slice the pads open to access the small pellets that will turn into a clear gel when mixed with water.
  • Add charms, small flowers or marbles to the flower gel for added flare. It will look like they're suspended in water.
  • If you make too much flower gel, place a large plastic trash bag over a flat surface and spread the gel over the plastic. The pellets or beads will dry out and shrink within approximately 48 to 72 hours.
  • You can make flower gel without a microwave, but it will take approximately 30 minutes for the pellets or beads to absorb the water. Heating the water and gel speeds the absorption process.
  • Do not pour the gel down the drain. Dispose of extra gel or old flower gel in the trash can.

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