How to Dry Boxwood Cuttings to Use Indoors

Preserve the color of boxwood cuttings by using florist dye.
Preserve the color of boxwood cuttings by using florist dye. (Image: Medioimages/Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Boxwood is a type of evergreen shrub commonly used in outdoor landscaping. The uniform shape and size of the boxwood's leaves make it a popular choice for dried floral arrangements and holiday leaves. The best way to dry boxwood cuttings is to use a two-part method so that the cuttings both retain their color and dry out properly.

Things You'll Need

  • Pruning saw or pruning shears
  • Hammer
  • 1-cup measuring cup
  • Boiling water
  • Glycerin
  • Container
  • Florist absorption dye

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Use freshly cut boxwood branches in order to preserve the color of the leaves. Cut an extra three to four inches for soaking and hanging the stems.

Pull the leaves off the stem ends. This is the end that will be soaking in the glycerin/dye mixture.

Hammer the ends of the stems. This allows for better absorption of the glycerin/dye mix during the preservation stage.

Measure out the water for the glycerin mixture. You need two parts water for every one part of glycerin. The amount of water you need depends on the length of the stem ends.

Measure out the glycerin. Put this aside so you have it ready when your water comes to a boil.

Bring the water to a boil and add the glycerin. Keep the glycerin/water mixture on the heat according to the manufacturer's instructions on the glycerin package.

Pour the glycerin/water mixture into the container. A one-quart container holds up to four cups of liquid. This should be large enough to hold your glycerin/water mixture and Boxwood cuttings. Use a glass container if you are working with hot glycerin/water mixture.

Add florist absorption dye to the container and mix thoroughly. The boxwood cuttings will absorb the color of the dye you have chosen.

Soak the cuttings in the mixture for one to two weeks. Remove and hang them by the stems in a warm dry place for two to three weeks.


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