What Is a Preserved Rose?

Eternal rose. Preserved rose. Forever rose. There are lots of names for these time-defying flowers, however, some are a bit misleading. Preserved roses do last a long time, but not infinitely. Generally, these roses will last anywhere from one to three years. So, how are preserved roses preserved? Unlike pressed flowers or dried foliage, preserved roses are treated with a chemical, typically a non-toxic, silica-based solution. This technique coats the petals individually so that each rose still looks and feels like a fresh flower. Ecuadorian roses are the most common roses used for this process as the flowers are sturdy, have vivid petals and are also easy to dye colors not found naturally.

As for the smell, many brands add a rose-inspired scent to the petals as the preservation process takes away the natural smell. And some preserved rose fans will use a rose-scented oil diffuser close by to mimic the smell of fresh-cut roses.

How to Care for a Preserved Rose

Climate, such as high humidity or temperature can affect preserved roses. But, in general, to get the most mileage out of your preserved roses, follow these cardinal rules:

  • Never water your preserved roses. Some specific brands will indicate whether or not you should spritz the petals with water after a couple of months, but as a general rule, they’re like Gremlins. Don’t get them wet.
  • Keep preserved roses out of the sun. Direct sunlight will zap the life of your roses, so make sure to keep them away from windows.
  • Don’t touch preserved roses. The oils on our hands can wear down the treated petals, so as a general rule, it’s best not to touch them. Make sure you buy packaging that you’ll like for a year(s) because attempting to move or transfer roses from the original box into a different vase can destroy them. They are long-lasting, but they’re still delicate.