Results of my blue dycks wildflower experiment

@TheHorse (73382)
Walnut Creek, California
March 30, 2016 1:02pm CST
Thanks to all who responded to my original post about the three wildflowers I picked, and the little experiment I was conducting to see how long they'd last as decorative flowers in a vase. Thanks especially to @mommaj for the suggestion to try bleach to extend their "shelf life." I did a little research and found out that they're called blue dycks (replace the "y" with an "i"). I don't know anything about the origin of the common name, but the Latin name is Dichelostemma capitatum. They grow in the foothills of Mt. Diablo, and can also be found in the foothills in Yosemite, to the East. My blue dycks lasted about five days in a shot glass before they started looking tired. After day three, I added a drop of Miracle Gro Quick Start, and they continued to look good for a couple more days. If I find more, I might pick six or so, and try both a drop of bleach and nothing at all, to see how long they last in those conditions. I finally bid these adieu after a week on my balcony. I'll attach a photo of the flowers after three days. It looks like the tallest one actually "grew," but that just might be the wind shifting its position in the shot glass.
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22 responses
@fishtiger58 (30319)
• Momence, Illinois
30 Mar 16
they are very pretty but I can't imagine they would last any longer or shorter than any other cut flower.
3 people like this
@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
30 Mar 16
Makes sense. I just wanted to see for myself. I may try a similar experiment with Indian Paintbrush. They seem to be drought-resistant. Would that affect how long they live once "yanked"? Or maybe they wouldn't like being stuck in a vase full of water. I might just leave a "control group" lying there in the sun. Heck, I might even stick some in some dirt, and see if they think they still have roots.
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@mommaj (22894)
• United States
30 Mar 16
Were they suppose to? I think he was seeing how long they would last. You know...I don't remember. Okay, pony, your comment didn't show up to me until much later. HEHEHE
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
30 Mar 16
@mommaj I was just curious to see how long they'd last. Now I'm curious about different flowers, and whether Miracle Gro is any better or worse than bleach for extending their life. Lemon-lime soda too.
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@DianneN (87468)
• United States
30 Mar 16
I usually use those little packets of whatever in my fresh flower bouquets, but I've tried a bit of bleach, too. It seems to work as well as those packets.
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
30 Mar 16
Do you remember who makes the little packets? Miracle Gro Quick Start is great for transplanting sensitive plants like corn from my little Dixie cups into the ground.
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@DianneN (87468)
• United States
30 Mar 16
@TheHorse No, sorry. They just come with the flowers and I never bothered to look. We love Miracle Gro at home.
@GardenGerty (103935)
• United States
30 Mar 16
I have not seen any like those, suppose that they do not grow in my neck of the woods. Some people say to do lemon lime soda in your water for flowers.
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
30 Mar 16
I may try that as well. Would 7-Up work? I think blue dycks like foothills more than plains.
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@mommaj (22894)
• United States
30 Mar 16
@TheHorse You asked if 7-Up would work? Yes, it has the lemon lime and is carbonated. The flowers will like that.
• United States
30 Mar 16
they're beautiful! i fear i'd be waitin' fer 'em to go to seed'n the wild 'n seein' if'n i could grow my own patch'f 'em. i don't use bleach myself, but hydrogen peroxide. jest takes a few drops added to the water - both help prohibit mold/fungus.
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
16 Apr 16
Ah, mold and fungus. Thanks! I was wondering what the reason was. What does aspirin do?
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• United States
16 Apr 16
@TheHorse yer welcome :) the aspirin adds a bit'f acidity to the water, makin 'it more akin to the plants natural growin' environment. ya still need somethin' to help prevent the mold/fungus 'n keep 'em fresh's long's possible.
@AnneEJ (4978)
• Dollard-Des-Ormeaux, Quebec
30 Mar 16
Beautiful flowers. I am anxiously awaiting the time when I can go for a walk and find some wild flowers. There's a place along the bike path where there are lots of purple violets, and last year I picked a lot and brought them home.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
20 Apr 16
Do you have secrets for keeping them healthy once you've put them in a vase?
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@AnneEJ (4978)
• Dollard-Des-Ormeaux, Quebec
20 Apr 16
@TheHorse No I just put them in water, and add as needed. They only last a few days., but I enjoy them as long as they last.
@mommaj (22894)
• United States
30 Mar 16
I have to ask if you found any particular cut to the stem seemed to help make them last longer? My aunt owned a floral shop when I was a teenager. I loved being in there with the smell of the flowers. I helped design the arrangements. Thanks for the mention, but I didn't really do anything. Good luck on your next experiment.
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
30 Mar 16
I have a little pocket knife and may try diagonal cuts next time. With these, I just stuck them in the water as I picked them (with my fingernails).
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@mommaj (22894)
• United States
30 Mar 16
@TheHorse So they were straggly tares? LOL Probably about the same as a cut.
@marlina (79588)
• Canada
31 Mar 16
I am very surprised to read that one can use bleach.
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
6 Apr 16
That surprised me too!
• Philippines
31 Mar 16
I did this experiment with the welcome plant, not only they lasted long but they started growing roots.Didn't end well with the sansavieria or snake plant though.
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
31 Mar 16
Do you have a picture of the welcome plant?
@Tampa_girl7 (26724)
• United States
31 Mar 16
I have never heard of using bleach for that before.
1 person likes this
@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
31 Mar 16
I hadn't either!
@jahunt (1389)
• United States
30 Mar 16
Those are very nice. Three days and going, right? I have heard that an aspirin dissolved in water keeps flowers alive longer. I normally do it when I get roses. I tried it like 10 years ago. Lol!
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
30 Mar 16
Ah, more food for thought for my next experiment!
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• Rochester, New York
30 Mar 16
I love pressing flowers. I have a rose from when I was little and in my cousins wedding.
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
20 Apr 16
That's pretty cool! I've never tried pressing flowers.
@amadeo (75534)
• United States
30 Mar 16
first I never heard about this flower.I do recall when I pick wild flowers they do not last long. I will have to try this to see if it works for me.
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
16 Apr 16
Mine seem to last about four days, if they survive the trauma of being picked. I probably wont be picking any more this season.
@Corbin5 (119116)
• United States
30 Mar 16
They are a lovely color and do add a lot of happy one's day! Glad they lasted as long as they did.
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
6 Apr 16
I wish I'd had my camera with me on yesterday's hike There were some lovely blue flowers out on the Inspiration Point trail.
@just4him (128384)
• Green Bay, Wisconsin
30 Mar 16
Interesting experiment. Beautiful flowers. I've never heard of bleach extending the life of flowers. I look forward to seeing your results.
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
31 Mar 16
I'll see what's up there next time we go hiking.
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@fawkes62 (1291)
• United States
30 Mar 16
Those are pretty, glad you were able to enjoy them for a few days before you had to bid them adieu.
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
31 Mar 16
I enjoyed checking them every morning.
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@teamfreak16 (42009)
• Denver, Colorado
30 Mar 16
Pretty flowers. I would've thought bleach would be bad for them. Who knew?
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
30 Mar 16
I know! I was surprised by that suggestion as well!
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@Juliaacv (34109)
• Canada
30 Mar 16
They are a very nice flower, great that you figured out the name of them!
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@TheHorse (73382)
• Walnut Creek, California
30 Mar 16
Yes, it's fun trying to figure out the names of the wildflowers we see. Indian Paintbrush I recognized from Montana. But Indian Warrior I learned about only a year or two ago. I recognize shooting stars now too. I never remember the Latin names.
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@DaddyEvil (26042)
• Aurora, Missouri
2 Sep 16
I'm just reading some of your posts that I missed out on before, pony. I hope you don't mind. How did your experiments turn out, or did you actually do them? Uhm... you might like to read these tips from a professional to her friend:
Design Mom The Intersection of Design & Motherhood March 6, 2013 Text and images by Lindsey Johnson for Design Mom. Nothing brightens a room quite like a vase of fresh flowers. Also, nothing smells quite as nice (with the exception of a few flowers maybe —
@BelleStarr (39719)
• United States
7 Apr 16
They look very good to be three days from being picked. I love to pick wild flowers when we are out and about.
@JudyEv (136523)
• Bunbury, Australia
4 Apr 16
They're still pretty. Sugar helps some flowers last longer and dissolving an aspirin in the water is supposed to help too.