How to dry hibiscus flowers

Written by kathryn hatter
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How to dry hibiscus flowers
Dry hibiscus flowers for decoration or you can even make a herbal tea with them. (Yury Minaev/iStock/Getty Images)

Hibiscus flowers have bright and showy blooms with a tropical appearance. Whether you grow your own hibiscus in a flower garden or you buy them from a florist, you may want to experiment with drying hibiscus flowers. When you dry hibiscus flowers, you are preserving them so they will last indefinitely in floral arrangements. Use silica gel for the best drying results when preserving hibiscus blossoms.

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Things you need

  • Pruning shears
  • Silica gel
  • Large plastic container with lid
  • Smaller plastic container with lid
  • Dry paintbrush

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  1. 1

    Clip off the stem from the hibiscus bloom with pruning shears.

  2. 2

    Pour a 1.25 cm (1/2 inch) layer of silica gel into the bottom of the container, which should be large enough to hold the flower.

  3. 3

    Place the hibiscus blooms into the container with the blossoms facing up. If you are placing more than one bloom in the container, ensure they are not touching each other.

  4. 4

    Sprinkle the silica gel lightly over the hibiscus flowers. It is important that the petals of the flowers don't move as you pour the silica gel. Continue sprinkling the silica gel over the hibiscus blooms until you have buried them completely.

  5. 5

    Seal the container and allow it to sit undisturbed for three weeks.

  6. 6

    Check the hibiscus blooms after three weeks. The blooms are sufficiently dry when the petals are dry to the touch and feel crisp. The petals will dry first and the thickest portions of the hibiscus blooms will take the longest to dry.

  7. 7

    Carefully pour out some of the gel into another container.

  8. 8

    Reach into the container and lift out the hibiscus blooms by the base of the flowers. Use the soft paintbrush to remove the remaining silica gel from the blooms.

Tips and warnings

  • It is difficult to dry stems completely with silica gel. For this reason, remove the stem with the pruning shears prior to drying the hibiscus bloom. If you want a long stem on the bloom after it's dried, you can add floristry wire to the flower to create a stem.
  • Silica gel absorbs moisture from flowers as you use it, but you can dry it again for reuse. Spread the silica gel in a shallow pan and bake it in the oven at 120 degrees C (250F) for two to three hours. When the silica gel turns blue again, it is sufficiently dry. Store the silica gel in the airtight container.

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