Freeze drying is one of the best ways to preserve your flowers. Freeze drying enables flowers to last a long time, while retaining their original shape. This process is called lyophilisation and requires special equipment. If you do not need to preserve flowers on a regular basis, you can opt to have a professional freeze dry your flowers for you. However, you can perform this process at home with the proper equipment.
Open any blooms that are closed, cut the stems diagonally and place them in fresh water for 12 hours.
Strip the stems right before placing the flowers in the freeze-drying machine. Stems take longer than the rest of the flower to dry, and stripping them allows them to dry faster.
Set up the floral freeze-drying machine according to the manufacture's instructions.
Place the flowers on the rack inside the machine for the length of time indicated in the manufacturer's instructions. The machine will extract all moisture from the flowers.
Touch the flowers to determine if they are completely ready after 10 to 12 days. If the flowers feel cold, there is still moisture in them and they need to remain in the machine longer.
Purchase a floral freeze-drying machine from a reputable company that offers support or training on how to use and maintain the machine. You can use silica gel to dry and preserve flowers.