How to Make Potpourri Smell Longer

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Potpourri is attractive and fragrant.
Potpourri is attractive and fragrant. (Image: Hemera Technologies/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Potpourri consists of dried plant materials that emit a strong yet pleasant fragrance. Dried flower petals, herbs, seeds, spices and leaves add both their fragrance and their attractiveness to a potpourri mix. You can display potpourri in a small bowl or sew it into sachets. The dried plant materials emit their fragrance and add a pleasant aroma to the area they are displayed in. Prolonging the fragrance for as long as possible extends the life of your potpourri so you can enjoy it for many months.

Things You'll Need

  • Fragrant flowers and leaves
  • Orris root
  • Essential oils
  • Jar or plastic bag

Air dry the flowers, herbs and leaves used in the potpourri thoroughly to prevent the potpourri from mildewing or rotting prematurely. Spread the materials out in a single layer in a dry, well-ventilated location until the plant materials are brittle and papery.

Mix a fixative, such as dried orris root, in with the dried flowers. The fixative prevents the scent from fading too quickly and prevents the potpourri from rotting. Use 1 tbsp. orris root powder for every 5 cups of dried plant material.

Add a complementary essential oil to the potpourri mix to strengthen its aroma and ensure the longevity of the fragrance. Add up to 8 drops of essential oil to every 5 cups of potpourri. For example, use a rose oil for a rose petal-based potpourri.

Store the potpourri in a tightly sealed jar or plastic bag until you are ready to use it. The jar prevents moisture from compromising the scent and quality of the potpourri. Keep the potpourri enclosed in the jar for at least a month so the fragrance can reach its full strength in all the plant material.

Revive old potpourri once the scent begins to fade. Mix five drops of essential oil with the potpourri to add fresh aroma to the plant material.

Tips & Warnings

  • Display potpourri in an area free from moisture and away from direct sunlight to further prolong its usefulness.

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