Does floral wire and twine affect the vase water quality?
Flower stems are often bound together with an elastic band or other type of binding material. Although it is common practice, some binding materials can have a negative effect on the vase life. Elastic bands are no problem; they are made of an inert material. Natural fibres, such as raffia, rope etc., cause problems if they are biologically contaminated. In addition, they can serve as food for bacteria that may be present, particularly in vases only containing tap water i.e. no flower food.
Uncovered / unprotected metals are corrosive in the acidic vase water (pH 4-5) and release metal particles that are ‘toxic’ for flowers. This can lead to stem, leaf and flower damage. Gerbera is often reinforced with a wire, and whilst in the vase, this wire can begin to rust, which shortens their vase life. Keeping the vases and the vase water clean, using flower food and correct dosing will help to keep the Gerbera stems straight.
Tips for arrangement & design phase:
• If you must use binding material, only use completely plasticized wire or aluminium wire
• Use inert, non-organic binding materials
• Purchase Gerbera varieties with strong stems that do not require the support of a wire
• Use Chrysal CVBN to condition Gerbera and help them ‘stand strong’