Pressing flowers between book pages or burying them in desiccants help save special event corsages and arrangements or garden blooms, but those methods take several days or even weeks. Using your microwave to speed the process means your blossoms are ready for crafting or displaying in hours. This method works best with densely petaled flowers, such as zinnias, carnations, marigolds and roses. Flowers with thin petals may become brittle.
Things You'll Need
Heat-tolerant glass container or other microwave-safe dish
Coffee mug or heat-tolerant measuring cup
Acrylic sealer spray (optional)
Silica gel offers the best results, but a mixture of equal parts of borax and sand, borax and white cornmeal or even kitty litter work well as desiccants.
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Prepare the Flowers
If you are harvesting blooms from your own garden, pick them in late afternoon when the water content of the petals is lower. Cut the stems to about 2 inches from the flower’s base and wire them as needed.
Dry the Flowers
Spread 1 to 2 inches of the desiccant in the bottom of the container.
Place the flowers in the container, spacing them about 3/4 inch apart. Be sure that the blooms are not touching each other or the sides of the container.
Cover the flowers with desiccant.
Put water in the coffee mug or measuring cup and set it in the microwave oven with the flowers.
Microwave the flowers on full power until dry, checking after each minute. The time needed depends on the size and thickness of the blooms.
Leave the flowers in the desiccant overnight to cool completely.
To add more protection to your flowers, spray them with acrylic sealer.
Hair spray makes a convenient substitute for acrylic sealer.