Today’s blog is all about waiting. In other words, it’s about the exact opposite of instant gratification.
Back in the late 90’s, we had some beautiful hydrangea plants in our yard. For a few years, as fall arrived and they started to fade and dry on the stems, I would cut some of the prettiest ones and dry them. After they were hung upside down, they were left to dry for a couple of weeks.
Once sufficiently dried, I put them in a large oval copper with brass handles and placed them on our fireplace hearth. I absolutely loved the look of dried hydrangeas, especially as an inexpensive way to continue enjoying them all through the winter until fresh flowers were available in the yard again.
After several years in Hawaii with no hydrangeas, not to mention no fireplace hearth, I got away from the habit of drying them. This was in part because by the time fall rolls around, I am not spending enough time in the yard to even think of it. But this year as I was winterizing my pots, those hydrangea bushes caught my attention, and the partially dried blossoms had the most beautiful sage color to them.
Now would be a good time to mention that using dried hydrangeas is not the right thing if you need an arrangement for a dinner party tonight. This is where the waiting comes in. To properly dry hydrangeas, you have to wait, and wait, and then wait some more for them to dry to perfection.
But since I have plenty of time, I grabbed my pruning shears, and cut about 8 of the prettiest blossoms. In my experience, the leaves don’t dry very attractively, so I trimmed them off. Then armed with my twine and scissors, I cut 12″ lengths of twine and wrapped it around two to three stems at a time, allowing enough space for air to circulate.
After that, all that was left to do was hang the bundles from a hook in our laundry room and wait for them to dry. In my dreams, these dried hydrangeas will look amazing tucked in the dining room Christmas tree, nestled amongst the ornaments of green, gold and white. But for now, I wait…