Flowers bring about a delicate fragrance and striking colors, but unfortunately, once cut, fresh florals don't last past a few days. Thus, capturing this fleeting beauty calls for mastering the delicate art of drying flora. It's a simple yet deeply rewarding craft that opens doors to endless creativity and a heartfelt connection to the natural world. 

Whether you wish to immortalize an arrangement from a special occasion, such as a wedding bouquet, or bring a touch of everlasting nature into your home, dehydrating plants is a journey of discovery and appreciation. 

In this guide, you'll find a blend of time-tested methods like air drying and modern techniques like silica gel, ensuring you find the right fit. However, as you embark on this fulfilling endeavor, remember the essence of drying flowers lies in patience, a tender touch, and a willingness to experiment. 

So, gather your blooms, embrace the learning curve, and delve into the heartwarming world of flora drying.

How to Make Dried Flowers: 6 Easy Methods

Drying flowers is more than just a preservation technique. Whether it's a single rose from a special occasion or wildflowers from a countryside stroll, drying these allows you to hold onto those memories.

Here, we explore six distinct techniques that promise to keep your blooms looking fresh and vibrant all year round. 

1. How to Hang Dry Flowers

A bride’s hands can be seen holding a burnt orange dried flower bouquet by Hidden Botanics.

The first and most common method is hanging the plants upside down to allow them to air dry. Here’s a quick and easy guide to do this option: 

  1. Begin by selecting flowers that are fresh and in full bloom. Remove any leaves or extra foliage from the stems.
  2. Gather the stems into small, neat bunches, securing each with a rubber band or some twine. It’s important to ensure that the bunches aren’t too dense, allowing air to circulate freely among the stems and heads.
  3. Hang them upside down in a well-ventilated, dry, and dark space. Areas such as an attic, closet, or a seldom-used room are ideal. The darkness helps in retaining the color, while the air circulation aids in the drying process.

It generally takes about two to three weeks for them to dry completely. The exact time may vary depending on the type of flower and the conditions of the drying space. Therefore, it’s a good practice to check on your stems weekly to monitor their progress. Once they feel dry and the stems have hardened, they are ready!

Bonus Tip: Drying seed heads and grasses? Hang them as you would other plants, but enclose them in a paper bag with holes to allow ventilation and to catch any seeds that fall.

2. How to Dry Flowers With Silica Gel

A more contemporary way to preserve flora is with a desiccant or silica gel. You’ll want to start with fresh, unblemished blooms at their peak. Then, follow the steps below to achieve a crisp finish. Some say this is the best way to dry flowers to maintain their natural shape!

  1. Trim the stems, leaving about an inch. It's essential to use flowers that are somewhat dry, so ensure they have no dew or moisture on them.
  2. Begin by layering an inch or two of silica gel in an airtight container. Gently nestle the blooms face-up in the gel. Carefully spoon more silica gel around the petals, ensuring they retain their natural shape, and then seal the buds with a final layer of gel.
  3. Place the airtight lid on the container to create a dry environment for the flowers to desiccate. The drying process can range from two to seven days, depending on the density and moisture content.
  4. To check the progress, gently brush away the silica gel and feel the petals. If they are papery and dry, they are ready. If not, re-cover with silica gel and check again in a day or two.

Bonus tip: What makes this method stand out is that you can reuse the gel. Post-drying, you can regenerate silica gel by spreading it on a baking sheet and baking at 250°F (or 120°C) for about an hour. Once cooled, store in an airtight container for future use.

3. How to Dry Flowers in a Vase 

A close-up photo of a colorful bouquet with dried flowers by Hidden Botanics.

If you’re looking for a slower, more natural alternative, you can dry your blooms in a vase. While this method can take a long time, it allows you to enjoy the flowers while they dehydrate. Here’s how to dry out flowers in a vase:

  1. Firstly, select fresh flowers with sturdy stems and remove any excess foliage. Cut the stems to your desired length, but leave them longer than you might for a fresh bouquet.
  2. Fill a vase with a few inches of water. Place the plants in the vase and find a cool, dry spot away from direct sunlight where they can remain undisturbed.
  3. The flowers will drink up the remaining water and dry gradually as the water evaporates, which can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks.
  4. Once the water has evaporated, allow the flora to remain in place for several more days to ensure they have dried completely. When you touch them, the petals should feel dry and have a papery texture.

This method is excellent for those who want to watch the drying process and see their blooms transform into lasting bouquets. 

4. How to Dry Flowers in the Microwave

When you’re short on time, microwaving is one of the quickest methods. It allows you to dehydrate your florals within a few short minutes, and you can choose whether to preserve them whole or press them. This is how to dry out flowers quickly:

  1. Trim the stems close to the base of the head.
  2. Arrange them in a microwave-safe dish.
  3. Fill the dish with about an inch of silica gel or a substitute like a cat litter. Place the flowers face-up in the container, then cover with more material.
  4. Place a microwave-safe cup of water in the microwave alongside the dish to prevent the contents from getting too dry or burning.
  5. When microwaving, start with one to two minute bursts on a low setting, checking the petals in between.
  6. The total time may range from a few minutes to an hour, depending on the type of foliage and microwave settings.
  7. Allow the flowers to cool to room temperature before removing them from the microwave and the drying medium.

Bonus tip: While gel or a similar substance can help you achieve a fuller look and retain the natural shape of the flower during microwaving, you can also buy pre-made press kits. For example, a microwave-safe press can give you a flatter finish. 

5. How to Dry Flowers in the Oven 

Baking is a great way to preserve foliage. You’ll want to begin with fresh, fully bloomed flowers to achieve the best results. Follow these steps to learn how to dry out flowers in an oven:

  1. Start by trimming the stems to about an inch. Ensure the petals and stems are dry to the touch before starting.
  2. Preheat your oven to its lowest setting, usually between 100°F to 200°F (or 40-90°C). Lay the plant on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, ensuring they don’t overlap.
  3. Place the baking sheet in the oven, keeping the door slightly ajar to allow moisture to escape and to maintain a low temperature.
  4. You can expect this process to take one to two hours or longer, depending on the flower variety and oven temperature.
  5. Check the contents every 30 minutes to prevent over-drying or burning. They are ready when they feel dry to the touch and have a papery texture.
  6. Allow them to cool completely before removing them from the oven.

Following the oven-drying method is a great way to get a quick and even finish, whether you’re preserving whole flowers or parts of them. 

6. How to Press Dry FlowersSunlight streams through a window onto a white and orange wedding bouquet.

Flower pressing is a tradition you may already be familiar with. The process helps you achieve beautiful, thin, dried blooms that can be used for decorating or crafting. Remember to handle the ingredients gently, as the result will be very delicate. 

This is how to dry and press flowers:

  1. Choose flowers that are fresh, relatively flat, and free from blemishes. Varieties with naturally flat faces, like pansies or violets, work best.
  2. Lay out a sheet of parchment paper within the pages of a heavy book. Arrange your selections face down on the paper, ensuring they don’t overlap.
  3. Cover with another sheet of parchment paper and close the book.
  4. Stack additional books or other flat, heavy objects on top to apply pressure, ensuring the contents dry flat.
  5. The pressing process typically takes two to four weeks. The thicker and more moist the flower, the longer it will take to press and dry.
  6. Carefully open the book and check for dryness. If they aren’t completely dry, replace the parchment paper with fresh sheets and continue pressing until dry.
  7. Once dry, store pressed plants in a cool, dark place in layers of parchment until you're ready to use them.

Flower pressing can be a great way to get creative, as you can use your pieces in numerous fun projects!  

How to Make Dried Flowers: A Comparison Table 

How to Dry Flowers




Air-drying (hanging and in a vase)

2-3 weeks

Natural option, requiring little equipment. You can also dry the stems. 

Time-consuming. You may lose the natural color if you leave it out in the sun.

Silica Gel

2-7 days

Retain the shape of the flower. Reuse the gel for future flower drying.

You need to let the flowers dry a little before placing in the gel.


2-3 minutes 

The quickest method.

Requires special equipment and is easy to over-dry.


1-2 hours

Flowers dry evenly, and it’s relatively quick.

Easy to over-bake the flowers.


2-4 weeks

Requires minimal space. It creates thin floral decorations.

Dries flat, so they lose their original shape. This can limit its uses.


Each method of drying flowers invites you to explore a different facet of this time-honored craft. While the methods vary, they all share a common goal: to preserve the beauty and essence of your cherished blooms, allowing you to enjoy them for many days to come. 

Through experimentation and a touch of patience, you'll discover the technique that resonates with your personal style and the types of flowers you wish to preserve, unlocking a world of everlasting floral charm.

How Long Does It Take to Dry Flowers?

The time it takes to dry out flowers depends on the method you use. As you saw above, some techniques take a few minutes, while others take a couple of weeks. It’s essential to experiment with various processes to find the best way to dry flowers for your needs.

How to Make Dried Flowers Smell Good?

The journey of transforming fresh blooms into dried flowers is indeed a fascinating one, but it may come at the cost of losing the delightful fragrance you so adore. While dehydrated flowers carry a subtle perfume, they often aren’t as vibrant as fresh alternatives. Fret not, as there are ways to reintroduce enchanting scents to your dry flower compositions, making them a delight for the senses.

  • Spritzing Essential Oils: Opt for natural essential oils that complement the essence of your dry flowers. Lavender, rose, and eucalyptus are some popular choices. Simply fill a spray bottle with water and add a few drops of your chosen essential oil. Give it a good shake and hold the bottle about a foot away from the arrangement, delivering a gentle mist over the flowers. It's crucial to exercise restraint when using oils. A light spritz is all you need to refresh the scent, as excessive moisture could harm the dried petals and potentially lead to mold growth.
  • Incorporating Dried Herbs: Choose aromatic herbs such as rosemary, lavender, or mint. Not only do they add a pleasant scent, but they also enhance the visual appeal of your creation. Before adding to your bouquet, ensure the herbs are fully dehydrated to maintain the longevity of your arrangement. Then, tuck sprigs of herbs amidst the bunch, distributing them evenly to allow the scent to waft through.
  • Creating Scented Sachets: Fill small sachets with a mix of dried herbs and a few drops of essential oil, ensuring you use a breathable material. Tuck these sachets in and around your floral display. They’ll provide a gentle, enduring aroma without directly contacting the flowers, keeping them safe from moisture.

You can evaluate the scent of your composition every few weeks. If it’s fading, a gentle spritz of your oil mixture or a new sachet will reinvigorate the aroma. By embracing these methods, you can maintain a pleasant fragrance in your dry blooms, making them even more enjoyable.  

6 Ways to Use Dried Flowers

A bridal party wears beige and green outfits, holding clear umbrellas and dried flower bouquets.

Dehydrated flowers are a treasure trove of creativity, waiting to sprinkle their charm in myriad corners of your life. Their enduring beauty makes them a delightful choice for various applications. Let’s explore six inspiring ways to reincarnate dried plants into captivating creations.

1. Potpourri 

The ultimate way to use dried flowers around your home is to create a bag or container of dried plant materials or potpourri. The best thing about this is that you don’t have to worry about the whole flower maintaining its shape, as you’ll usually separate the petals to create a fuller look.

You can blend your flora with other aromatic ingredients like dried herbs, spices, and a few drops of essential oils to create a fragrant potpourri. Then, display it in decorative bowls or sachets around your home to keep your spaces smelling fresh and evoking a serene, natural ambiance.

2. Wedding Bouquets 

For a twist on the fresh bouquet, dried flowers can be fashioned into beautiful wedding arrangements, offering a vintage touch to your special day. You don’t have to worry about the bunches wilting after a day. With dried flower wedding bouquets, you have a keepsake for years to come. So, post-wedding, they serve as a lasting memento of cherished moments, without the need for any preservation efforts. 

Use any of the methods listed in this guide if you’re wondering how to dry a bouquet of flowers. Alternatively, if you want the longevity of dried designs but not the hassle of drying flowers at home, explore our floral range today or get a bespoke quote within 24 hours. 

On the left, a bride is laughing while she holds a yellow and orange bridal bouquet. On the right, a bride and a bridesmaid stand together, holding dried flower wedding bouquets.

3. Flower Crowns

Weave dry plants into whimsical flower crowns, perfect for festivals, photo shoots, weddings, or everyday whimsy. Drying your own variations lets you personalize your creation with your favorite flowers and colors that resonate with your style. Plus, crowns add a touch of boho to any occasion, whether you’re getting married, hosting a garden party, or looking for delicate decorations. 

4. Decorative Arrangements

Create striking displays with dehydrated flowers for your tabletops, mantles, or any nook craving a touch of nature. You might tailor it to suit seasonal themes or color schemes, adding a refreshing change to your decor. There are so many colors to choose from, including burnt oranges for a warm, autumnal style or white and beige arrangements for a more timeless look.

On the left, a close-up picture of a floral buttonhole. On the right, the photo shows a bride’s hands holding a white dried flower bouquet.

5. Craft Projects 

What better way to use dried flowers than in crafting sessions? Adding in a touch of nature opens up a world of possibilities as you can embed them in resin for jewelry or bookmarks, scrapbooking, candle making, and more. If you are making cards, framed pictures, or scrapbooking, pressing is the best way to dry flowers. Though however you do it, they are the perfect delicate addition to your creations, allowing you to express your personality and create bespoke pieces for your enjoyment or as a gift.

6. Gifting 

Naturally dry foliage makes visually appealing packaging accents. You can adorn gift wrap with dried florals for an elegant, thoughtful touch. Alternatively, drying a handpicked bunch of flowers, crafting a piece of jewelry with embedded petals, or making a personalized potpourri blend make one-of-a-kind gift ideas. 

On the left, a flat-lay features wedding rings, bridal shoes, and an orange wedding bouquet on a white background. On the right, a bride is smiling as she is surrounded by orange and green bridal bouquets with dried flowers.

Top Tips on How to Make Dried Flowers Last

Ensuring the longevity of your dried flowers not only honors the time and care invested in creating them but also allows their beauty to be a cherished companion for a longer span. The journey to everlasting blooms is twofold: meticulous drying followed by gentle preservation. Let's unfurl the steps to achieve this.

Tips for Drying Flowers

Whichever method you think is the best way to dry flowers, there are some crucial things to consider. Before you dry your blooms, read our top tips to guarantee a beautiful finish. 

  • Use Healthy Flowers: Choosing healthy and fresh flowers is paramount for successful drying. Look for blooms at their peak, free from pests, diseases, and physical damage. The healthier the pick, the better the results post-drying.
  • Shun Direct Sunlight: Exposing your blooms to direct sunlight while drying can lead to color fading and may make the petals brittle. It's advisable to choose a drying area where the sunlight doesn't reach yet has good air circulation to facilitate the drying process.
  • Keep Away From Moisture: Any dampness can ruin the final result, as moisture, when drying, can lead to mold growth. Thus, choose a dry, well-ventilated area for the dehydration process. It's also essential to start with plants that aren't wet from rain or morning dew.
  • Hairspray to the Rescue: Once your flowers are dry, a light coating of hairspray can provide a protective barrier against dust and other environmental elements. It helps maintain the form and adds a bit of shine.
  • Pre-Arrangement Planning: Envision your arrangement and gather all necessary decorative items, like vases, ribbons, or other accessories, before starting, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable process. Having everything at hand will make the process smoother and more enjoyable. Plus, you can also plan your arrangement beforehand, ensuring you have an ample number of flowers and a variety of types to create a visually appealing display. 
  • Choose the Right Blooms: Some flowers dry better than others. Roses, lavender, and baby's breath are among the stars of dried bouquets because they retain their shape and color better than others. Make sure you research what types of flowers work well for drying and choose ones known for their long-term success.

Tips for Preserving Dried Flowers

Whether you are drying your own or buying a bunch of dried flowers, proper maintenance is essential. Read our advice for preserving your dried bouquets for longer.

  • Gentle Dusting: Dust can accumulate over time, making your designs look less vibrant. Keep your dried creations dust-free by gently dusting them with a soft-bristle paint brush, feather duster, or a hairdryer set on cool. This will help to remove dust without damaging the flowers.
  • Avoid Water Contact: Shield your blooms from water and humidity to prevent browning, wilting, or molding. While this is essential during the drying process, it’s also pivotal post-drying to ensure longevity. For instance, bathrooms or damp areas are a no-go as the humidity levels are higher. 
  • Find the Right Home: Place your dried flowers in a cool, dry room away from direct sunlight. It’s equally crucial to keep them far from heat sources like stoves or fireplaces, which could make them brittle, fade in color, or even catch fire. The location of your dried flower arrangement impacts its quality over time. A cool, dry, and shaded spot is ideal. 

These tips provide a roadmap to dry your flowers optimally and ensure they remain a charming feature in your space for as long as possible. Adhering to these guidelines will ensure that the love and effort invested in drying and arranging these blooms extend their beauty and charm manifold.

A photo shows a small yellow bunch of dried flowers for wedding decorations.

Shop Handmade Dried Flower Bouquets 

Drying flowers is an alluring tradition that captures the ethereal beauty of nature in a lasting form. But what if there's a way to bypass the meticulous process of dehydration while still enjoying the same rustic charm? 

Enter Hidden Botanics, a brand that understands the essence of preserving nature's beauty in a tangible form. Our extensive collection of dried and artificial flower arrangements serves as a quaint bridge between the traditional and the contemporary, offering a hassle-free alternative to drying flowers at home or opting for fresh bouquets that wilt away with time. 

At Hidden Botanics, our array of over 500 unique designs and bespoke options provides an eco-conscious, aesthetic, and perfect alternative to fresh flowers. Every bunch is handcrafted, reflecting our commitment to design, swift service, and competitive pricing. 

We invite you to explore the timeless allure of our dried flower bouquets, crowns, and decorations. Or, craft a narrative uniquely yours with our customizable patterns. Our creations are a testament to the enduring charm of nature, whether you’re decorating your home or finding the perfect addition to your special day.

So, as you ponder over the ways to immortalize the floral essence of your big day, why not let the experts at Hidden Botanics make the perfect bouquet for you? Explore our collection or reach out for a personalized consultation, and let's craft floral memories that resonate with your values and aesthetics.

A bride is holding a large wedding bouquet featuring dried flowers by Hidden Botanics.


How do you dry fresh flowers for decorations?

Use methods such as air drying or silica gel drying to create wonderful dried flower decorations. Alternatively, browse our dried flower arrangements to get beautiful florals for your event.

How do you dry flowers and keep their color?

The best way to dry flowers to maintain their color is by keeping them out of direct sunlight. Techniques like using silica gel or hang drying work well, especially if you store the flowers in a dark, well-ventilated space.

How to keep dry flowers from falling apart?

Silica gel drying is a great method if you want to retain the natural shape of the flowers. Plus, spraying unscented hairspray on the dried flowers can help maintain their shape for an extended period.

How to make dried flowers smell good?

While dried flowers have a subtle natural scent, they may fade over time. To liven up the fragrance, give it a gentle spritz with natural oil, such as lavender, rose hip, and so on. However, it's essential to use it sparingly to ensure you don't damage the petals and add too much moisture to the arrangement. Alternatively, add dried herbs to your bouquet to give it a stronger, organic scent.

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