Rose flowering plant without thornsHow long can flowers go without water depends on several factors, for example, which flower are you using, what is the size of the flowers, and where are they kept.

Anyone who has ever received a bouquet knows how quickly it can begin to wilt.

In the following guide, we’ll answer your questions and share tips and tricks to extend their life.

How Long Can Flowers Go Without Water?

💥Most flowers can go without water for about three to five days. However, there are some exceptions. Desert plants, cacti, and succulents can survive much longer without water.


On the other hand, non-native flowers and the bigger blooms can start to wilt sooner than their native counterparts. But generally, flowers of any kind have a healthy life of about 3-6 days, after which you’ll see them wilt.

Why Do Flowers Wilt?

Flowers wilt because they’re not getting enough water. When the flowers don’t have enough water, they can’t transport nutrients and moisture up their stems. Also, the water evaporates because of the petal’s surface area, leaving the flowers dry. This causes the flower’s fresh look to appear more gloomy, and tired, lastly to end up wilting.

Factors That Speed Up Wilting

Several factors play a role in how long flowers can last without water. In addition to the type of flower and the size of the bloom. A few other factors can affect how long a flower lasts. These include the humidity level, the temperature, and how often the flower is exposed to sunlight.

– Type of Flower

Flowers with smaller blooms and more compact petal structures tend to last longer. Some of the locally found flowers that last long are alstroemerias, carnations, chrysanthemums, orchids, and zinnias. Sunflowers are also one of the most commonly available flowers that can last long if you cut them properly.

– Size of Bloom

The size of the bloom can also affect how long a flower lasts. Flowers with large blooms may start to wilt sooner than those with smaller blooms. The reason for that is that the larger bloom has more surface area and can evaporate more water than the smaller flower.

– Climate Condition

In general, flowers native to warmer climates will have a shorter lifespan than those native to cooler temperatures. The only exception is the cacti flower, which is grown in extremely hot climates but survives for a long time.

– How Long Can Flowers Go Without Water in Sunlight

Flowers kept in a cool, dark place will generally last longer than those maintained in a hot, sunny spot. The sun’s heat and light can cause flowers to wilt and their petals to fade quickly.

– Humidity

When the level of humidity is high, it can cause flowers to wilt, while low humidity can cause them to dry out. The solution is to mist your flowers regularly to keep them hydrated. Or you can put a humidifier next to them with controlled humidity levels.

Hence, it is key to keep in mind that flowers with high humidity will be wilting when they are not being watered enough.

– Picking The Right Flower

Not all flowers are created equal regarding how long they’ll last. Some varieties don’t have a long lifespan, no matter how well you care for them. If you’re looking for a flower that will last a long time, do for Zinnia.

– Temperature

Extreme temperatures, whether hot or cold, can damage flowers. If it’s too hot, the flowers will wilt; on the other hand, if it’s too hard, they’ll freeze. Keep your flowers in an excellent spot away from any drafts or heaters to prevent this from happening.

– Pests

Pests can wreak havoc on your flower arrangement and shorten the lifespan of your flowers. To keep your flowers looking their best, check them for pests regularly and remove any you find.

How to Extend The Life of Your Flowers?

Who doesn’t love more flowers in their homes! If you have cut flowers in your home, you’d want to extend their lifetimes to add beauty to your space. If your flowers are already surviving off of water, here’s how to extend their lifetime:

– Cut The Stalks Regularly

Every few days, use a sharp knife or gardening shears to cut the stems at an angle. This will allow the fresh flowers to absorb more water.

– Add Sugar

A little sugar can go a long way! Add two tablespoons of sugar (or one tablespoon of lemon juice) per quart of water to keep your blooms looking fresh.

– Add Floral Preservative

You can also extend the life of your flowers by adding flower food to the water. This will help keep the water clean and provide nutrients to the flowers. Just be sure to follow the package directions carefully.

– Ensure That No Leaves Are Touching The Water

If leaves are touching the water, they will rot and contaminate the whole vase. Use a clean pair of shears to remove any leaves that are below the waterline. This will also reduce any fungal activity.

– Place it Somewhere Cool 

Flowers are happiest in a cool environment away from direct sunlight. If you can, place your flowers in a refrigerator overnight to give them a chance to perk up. Just be sure to put them in a vase first, so they don’t get too cold!

Frequently Asked Questions

– How Often Should I Change The Water in My Vase?

It’s generally best to change the water in your vase every two to three days. If you notice the water getting cloudy, it’s time for a change. Flowers absorb more water when the stems are first cut, you may need to change the water more often at first and then less frequently as time goes on.

– Can I Save a Wilting Flower?

It is possible to save wilting flowers in some conditions. When the flower is surviving without water, it can only live for a few days. If the flowers are looking droopy, they can be saved, but if the edges of the petals have started to burn, it’s not possible to bring the flower back to life.

If the flowers are only drooping, try adding sugar to the vase and keep the flowers in the fridge.

– What Should I Do With Dried And Wilted Flowers?

If your flowers are beyond saving, there are still a few things you can do with them.

  1. Dry them and press them to preserve them.
  2. Extract the essential oils from the petals to make perfume or potpourri.
  3. Compost the remains to help nourish your garden.

Dying drooping flowers dry without water


Although flowers can survive without water for a couple of days, their life can be extended. Here is what we learned:

  • Flowers are delicate creatures and can survive only up to 5 days after water.
  • If you want your flowers to last longer, make sure to keep them in a cool place and cut the ends of the stems every day.
  • Wilted flowers can be brought back to life by keeping them in a fridge overnight and then placing them in a vase away from direct sunlight.
  • Wilted and dried flowers are also gorgeous and can be used in making perfumes, candles, and resin art.

Flowers are delicately beautiful things that add a pleasant and fresh vibe to your space. We hope that we covered every question you had about keeping your cut flowers happy and healthy, and we hope you found it helpful.

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