The art of preserving flowers dates back thousands of years. Pressed petals were found in Egyptian coffins. Preserved flowers were used in perfumes and laying around houses for nice scents. In the 1500s, the Japanese perfected the art of pressing flowers and were masters at making beautiful designs and pictures using only organic material. When trade increased with Europe during the Victorian Era, pressed flowers traveled across the oceans to England and America. Victorian ladies would make pictures out of flowers and ribbons and even slip pressed flowers or petals into books to commemorate a special gift or moment. Nowadays, pressed flowers are popular with children’s crafts and getting them involved in gardening. It’s simple and easy, all you need is a phone book and about two weeks for the flowers to press and dry, and then you can make bookmarks, cards, anything you can dream of. Happy pressing!
Joyce Browning Horticulturist, Master Gardener Coordinator Video credit: Bethany Evans Longwood Gardens Professional Gardener Program Alumni; CPH