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How To Make Fresh Flowers Last Even Longer

Fresh flowers have been shown to add both character and personality to many settings. They often add color and cheer to any room, and can take on a variety of artful arrangements. Unfortunately, they only last so long and must be replaced once they have wilted. Still, there are steps you can take to preserve them for as long as possible, in order to enjoy them for a longer period of time. These steps are outlined below.

The first step you can take to preserve fresh flowers is to place them in water as soon as possible. Once the stems have been cut, the life support system has been removed. While water will not reinstate that support system, it will help restore it for a limited amount of time.

Fill a plastic bucket about 1/3 to 1/2 full with warm water. Warm water should be used instead of cold because flowers use it more readily. Because flowers only drink through the ends of the stems, as opposed to the sides, the bucket should not be filled up to the top. If this happens, any foliage left on the stems below the water level will rot and pollute the water, which will also cause your flowers to die more quickly. It is also advisable to add a preservative to the water. Preservatives will be discussed further in this article.

Take the bucket into the garden with you. Use a sharp pair of secateurs to cut the flower stems at an angle. A slanted cut allows for a better intake of water. Remove all foliage from the lower portion of the stems that would stand under the water level. Then, immediately place the flowers into the water.

Avoid overcrowding flowers. You should always allow enough air to circulate between each flower, as too many flowers crowded together in a bucket can cause the petals to become squashed or bruised. Place the bucket in a cool, dark place and allow the flowers to have a long drink before arranging them. When you pick short-stemmed flowers, be sure to use a smaller container so the foliage will remain above the water level.

Allow your flowers to have a good drink, preferably overnight before arranging them. This step is called conditioning, and allows the stems to fill up with water, and the flowers to become crisp. When you do this, your flowers will last twice as long as those that have not been properly conditioned.

Use a flower preservative to destroy any bacteria that may be present in the water. Flower preservatives are available in garden centers or supermarkets. Another alternative is to use a capful of household bleach in the water. If you choose not to use a preservative, it will be necessary to change the water and cut the stems at an angle on a daily basis. If a preservative is used, the stems do not require re-cutting, and the water should be changed only about twice a week.


Aromatherapy - A Brief History

Aromatherapy has become very popular over the past few years, serving as a means of relaxation and relief. Comprised of a blend of a variety of essential oils and massage oils, it is widely used throughout the world to help calm and rejuvenate the entire body. That is why it is also known as health for the body, mind, and spirit.

The term Aromatherapy comes from two words: 'aroma', meaning fragrance, and 'therapy', meaning treatment. It is a healing art based on nature and is said to be very successful in effecting the body, mind, and spirit. Increasingly used in society today, Aromatherapy is a fast growing therapy in holistic medicine. Even as far back as 18,000 b.c., flowers and plants were used for healing, relaxing, and energizing the body. Aromatherapy was used by three of the most ancient civilizations: Egypt, China, and India, and is reputed to be at least 6,000 years old.

Aromatherapy, as we know it today, began with the Egyptians who used the method of infusion to extract the oils from aromatic plants to be used for healing purposes. In additional to medicinal uses, Aromatherapy was also used for both cosmetic reasons and for embalming. During this time, certain plants were used for specific conditions, whereas others were used for religious purposes. Some were even believed to have the power to raise the level of consciousness or promote a state of tranquility.

The Egyptians understood the uses and benefits of Aromatherapy and incorporated it into their cooking as well. Here, specific herbs were used to help the digestive process while others protected against infection and helped build the immune system. After bathing, the Egyptians believed in being massaged with fragrant oils.

It is also believed that there is a strong possibility that the Chinese were using some form of aromatics at the same time as the Egyptians. The Shen Nung's Herbal book is the oldest surviving medical book in China and is dated about 2700 B.C. and contains information on over 300 different plants and herbs. The Chinese used aromatic herbs and burned aromatic woods and incense as a way of showing respect to God.

Traditional Indian medicine known as ayurveda has been practiced for over 3,000 years. The Greeks also continue to use Aromatic oils, along with many other countries and cultures. Pretty soon the use of Aromatherapy spread, and it is now one of the most widely practiced natural forms of healing all over the world. Drawing from what was used in ancient times, the Aromatherapy of today is a blend of the different cultures and is enjoyed by many people on a regular basis.


Aromatherapy - Health Advantages And Benefits

Aromatherapy has become a very popular means of healing and relaxation, and is practiced all over the world today. Dating back to ancient civilizations, its use of a variety of natural oils from herbs and plants has been known to aid in the healing of many conditions and provide both physical and mental relief to many people. As shown in more recent times, there are many health benefits to using Aromatherapy, a fact that wasn't lost on those in ancient times.

For centuries, essential oils have been used for massage purpose to relax the body and promote both physical and spiritual healing. It has been proven to work because it is thought that the aroma of the essential oils activate nerve endings in the nose, which then send impulses to the part of the brain that deals with emotions and memory. Because of this, it can have a very calming and soothing effect, which in turn, promotes relaxation.

Aromatherapy has also been shown to help relieve stress. This is done both by the massage itself, and through the aromatic part described above. This is useful even for those who don't necessarily need physical healing, but would just like to relax.

Aromatherapy can also be used to help heal a variety of physical health conditions by stimulating the immune system, thereby, healing to further build it and make it stronger. It can also stimulate the circulatory system, which will help blood flow more easily to all parts of the body.

Depending on the condition or specific reason for using Aromatherapy, a custom blend of essential oils can be mixed to help promote different things. An Aromatherapist can provide information on this process, and also help find the particular blend that will work for a specific condition or a variety of uses.

Before making any decisions, it is advisable to consult with an Aromatherapist, as it is also possible to continue this treatment at home. This, however, may not be a good idea unless you completely understand what it is you are trying to treat and how to best treat it.

Aromatherapy can also be used for pure enjoyment. Here it is very important to keep in mind that a healthy mind can often translate into a healthy body. The two can go hand in hand and one can definitely help promote the other. Though it is an old tradition, it is still widely used today and isn't expected to go away any time soon.


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