31 Days Blog to Biz / Day 17 – how to dry hydrangeas

how to dry hydrangeas Funky Junk Interiors

One trick to making your staging attractive is to add flowers. However once your garden stops producing fresh blooms, you need to either purchase store bought flowers or go without. Here’s a little trick that will have you in blooms all year long.

One of my favorite seasons is fall. And one reason is because of the amazing yield that can be had by one hydrangea bush. Hydrangeas bloom all summer, however fall does something special to these guys.

how to dry hydrangeas Funky Junk Interiors

I can’t take credit for inventing this tip. Vivienne from The V Spot shared her version of how she dries hydrangeas with the water technique. After I read her post, I burst out laughing. See, I’d have mine in water and forget about them, later realizing how fantastic they still looked even though they were neglected. Leave it to Vivienne to explain why! 🙂

I’m glad she explained it, because now we ALL can have beautiful hydrangeas within our reach any time of year!

How to dry hydrangeas

how to dry hydrangeas Funky Junk Interiors

1. Pick hydrangeas in the fall. Leave the blooms intact on the bush until the blooms start to go slightly crispy and some even brown. You want most of the moisture out of the petals.. this is key.

Tip: if you pick your hydrangeas in summer, they’re generally one color. Wait till fall and you end up with an amazing rainbow of soft hues. The above yield was from one bush!

vintage wicker basket

2. Cut the stems as long as you can so you have more variation with them later.

3. Leave them in water until they completely dry.

dried hydrangeas in wicker basket Funky Junk Interiors

May as well make that drying time pretty. 🙂

hydrangeas in fall Funky Junk Interiors

hydrangeas in fall Funky Junk Interiors

I love how the sun came out right at this time, casting a beautiful late afternoon highlight.

hydrangeas in fall Funky Junk Interiors

Here are a couple shots with my new micro lens.

hydrangeas in fall Funky Junk Interiors

And today’s quirk: there’s only one bad thing about micro close. Look quick if you’re squeamish. Ech!


I left that critter in there so you realize you cannot hide a THING with this kind of lens.

dried hydrangeas in wicker basket Funky Junk Interiors

Free flowers to play with for the rest of the year – priceless. Literally.

Other flower related posts:

Preserving real flowers

A unique dried flower / shutter centrepiece

All 31 Day posts to date are HERE.

Visit Day One for each listing HERE.

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Categories: Fall, Gardening, Summer
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  1. I had no idea! I am going to try and plant some for next year. It is hard to grow these here…so dry!! But I will give it a go. They are gorgeous!

  2. I just was drying some myself, but used a different method. I will try yours~mine was to strip the leaves off of the long stems and then band them with a rubber band and hang them upside down until they are very dry…maybe I will cut some more today! Yours look so pretty, and I love that double bottomed basket too.

  3. Are you leaving them out on your porch to dry? Or did you bring them in after your photo shoot? We have two hydrangea bushes planted by the previous owner and I am in heaven as they are one of my favorite flowers!!
    So if I do this right then we will have gorgeous hydrangea blossoms all winter as well as lavender! (another favorite!!)

    Thank you so very much for this tip!!

  4. Well, now that explains why mine turned out right! I had no idea that I was even drying mine.LOL! I cut them, put them inside a pretty green olive oil bottle with some water and a couple days later, I went to change the water and noticed that they were dry, but the color was still a pretty shade of green and rose! I had never cut my Hydrangeas until this year after I seen yours & Miss Mustard Seeds. I wish I could get mine to turn blue, but I must need to dump a WHOLE bag of acidic fertilizer to get mine that way. :^/

  5. Thank you sooo much! I’ve been searching since early september for a way to dry hydrangeas 😉
    I live in Norway, above the artic circle so I have to wait till next year…


  6. Donna I dry mine every year. Where I live way down south you can’t leave them on the plant that long. It was so hot here that they dried and turned brown on the plant very quickly. I even watered every other day. I always put them in water in a room with a fan on and let them soak up the water. They do hold their color if
    you let them soak up that water. Yours are beautiful, mine didn’t look that good this year with all the hot weather we got. I can’t wait to see what out of the ordinary thing you put them in.

  7. I love love love this post Ms FJI Donna! Hydrangeas are like my fav flowers in the living room too………always such great posts 🙂

  8. I’m glad to read that others can’t see the critter either. I thought it was just me. I love Hydrangeas and need to find some that will grow in Northern AZ! These photos are just beautiful!

  9. Wish I could grow these but it gets too cold here and they die everytime I plant them….maybe it would be worth doing for some of these beauties! I sent the tip on drying to a friend who does share some…thanks.

  10. I just posted the last of my roses on my blog this weekend now guess I will have to go and look at the remaining flowers on my hydrangea bush (it was loaded) and see what I can do with them. Thanks for the inspiration.

  11. Thanks for the drying tips, I always just bring them in and let them dry, now I will put them in water and let them dry instead of die! I don’t have near as many as you, but I bought 4 bushes this summer (I love them) so next year I should have plenty! can’t wait to see what you do with them!

  12. Ha ! I always bring a critter in when I bring in fresh flowers from the garden. And most times, the next morning there will be a filament of a spider web from the bouquet to the lamp. LOL…..My hydrangeas turned some weird colors this year but very pretty. The ordered florist hydrangeas from the wedding did not dry pretty at all. I probably should have left them in the water longer. xo

  13. You are so right on with this method for drying hydrangeas. I used it this past September and October with great success & they still look great. I have 3 Blushing Brides hydrangeas and the colors last year were amazing. It is a great treat to continue to enjoy through the winter. My plan this year is to decorate my Christmas tree with the dried flowers.

  14. So pretty. I’ve never dried hydrangeas but I may give it a try this year. My step-mom made the prettiest basket with little twinkle lights entwined through dried hydrangeas. I want to try that project myself.

  15. Just love the flowers. I have dried hydrangeas many ways. Has anyone tried putting
    hydrangeas in a brown grocery bag, putting them in the trunk of your car, forget them. Just check from time to time. Soon you will have the flowers and color that will make a beautiful arrangement. Lynda at Ocean Isle Beach.

  16. Well, I tried this method and it did not work. Ended up ruining some beautiful blooms. So, I will go back to the tried and true hanging upside down.

  17. Wow, I love hydrangeas, but they don’t grow very well in our area – too cold in the winter I would guess. I might try planting next spring, however, I’m always up for a new challenge:)

    One question, when you dry them in water, do you just add water at the start or do you continue to add a little water as they dry? I hop this isn’t a stupid question:/

  18. Absolutely Beautiful!!!! My hydrangeas are my passion!!! When my hydrangeas are dry I spray them with hair spray or a clear spray varnish–making sure to turn the stem upside down to get into the blossom with the spray–esp. if you have a large blossom–the color will remain for at least a year or more–longer to just admire and enjoy them!! Thank you for your post on HYDRANGEAS!!