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how to make tulips stand tall: put a penny in it

A few weeks ago I posted this picture of my haphazard tulips.

A reader suggested dropping in a penny the next time I bought a bunch to keep them from drooping.

And so I did.

Well, what do you know, I now have tall tulips.

I did a bit of research and found that the penny trick may make tulips stand tall, but it also results in a shorter life span. Experts suggest the best way to keep cut tulips looking pretty is good, old-fashioned clean water.

It may be a myth, but it sure worked for me.

27 thoughts on “how to make tulips stand tall: put a penny in it”

  1. My mum once told me to only put in a small amount of water (roughly 2 inches) and check it daily. Ever since my tulips have remained upright. It also works for gerberas and I’m sure other long stemmed flowers. Love all the tips.

  2. I like to put ice in tulip water. It makes the tulips streeeetch out beautfiully, probably because it shocks the heck out of them?! But I learned this trick from someone else and the tulips just look amazing so I continue to do it…

  3. Just wanted to let you know that for tulips its very imporant to have very little water in the vase, just like 2 inches. If you give them more water they will gobble it all up and wont last as long :)

    Adore your blog, have read it for a long time but this is my first comment!

  4. It may be a myth but it works for me too! It helps my tulips stand tall, AND they don’t loose their petals, which was the problem I always have with them. Also, I DOES make mine liver longer too…so keep putting a penny (or 3 in my case) in it!

  5. I have also found direct sunlight works too. I had tulips at work in my window sill and they stood straight up all the way till their petals started to fall off, but even then they stood straight up. I think the penny thing works if you introduce the penny at the right time (probably the beginning), because if they even start to fall down a penny won’t make them stand up again.

    1. Actually not true Mary-Frances. I brought home a small bunch of semi-limp tulips yesterday and my Mom told me about the penny trick so I gave it a shot. We dropped a Canadian penny in last night and this morning they are standing at attention!

      Scott in Calgary

  6. I do the penny trick too. Also, sometimes when you get tulips they are closed up so tight and never open -so a florist told me to use warm or tepid water in the vase after you trim them and they will/do open up!

  7. another trick is to cut small slits in the stem just below the bloom, two slits across from each other on the stem. A florist told my husband this trick when he was buying me a bunch. It keeps the blooms closed longer.

  8. A splash of vodka in your tulip’s water will also make them stand straight up…and keep them perky for a long time! Gotta love vodka!

  9. I’ve heard that adding a little bleach to your flower water, (especially tulips) keeps them fresh for longer because it kills the bacteria that makes the flowers go bad. it doesn’t harm the flowers though. Beautiful flowers!

  10. I am new to your blog and I have to say I am loving it!!
    I have also heard that trimming up the bottoms and frequent water changes are the way to go!! Never heard of the penny trick before – I may have to try that!

  11. I heard the penny trick is awesome but to also keep cutting the bottoms when you change out the water that way they stand up straight and it won’t cut down the life span. Love your purple ones!

  12. lovely tulips! love this trick! also works for gerbera daisies, any flower that flops really. I have never noticed it shortening their life span, I think it actually extends it. maybe its just in my head, I will have to pay attention next time. did you know tulip stems grow about an 1″ after they are in cut and in water.

  13. Well I am definitely going to have to try that! I change my water daily on tulips, and although they live for quite a while, they do fall over.
    Thanks for the tip!

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