Each year we test a sampling of the new cultivars that are included in the ASCFG National Cut Flower Trials and, occasionally, other species we are growing in our cut flower plots.
This year we screened 14 new cut flower species/cultivars.
The species with the longest vase life was Eucomis ‘Sparkling Burgundy’.
This plant produces tall flower spikes of small greenish white flowers on a burgundy-coloured stem. We have had this plant in the trials for three years and the clumps keep getting bigger every year; this year we had enough stems to officially test the vase life.
Interestingly, this species does best in just water, with a vase life of up to 43 days. The use of holding preservative reduced the vase life to 34 days, which, of course, is still much longer than the vase life of most flowers. Thus, eucomis could be used in arrangements with other flowers even with the use of floral preservatives. The use of a hydration solution resulted in a vase life of 19 days and the use of both hydration and holding solutions produced the shortest vase life of 11 days.
Other cultivars with a vase life longer than 14 days included Echinacea ‘Comet’, lisianthus ‘ABC White’, pepper ‘On Top Round Red’, Physocarpus opulifolius ‘Diabolo’ and rose Kolster cultivars. For the latter species, we tested the large red rose hips, which lasted 24-26 days. 

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