Ensuring success in sending flowers depends on what you tell the florist, how well the shop executes your instructions and how the recipient cares for the arrangement. Here are some tips gathered from florists, the Society of American Florists and the FTD Association:
Be as specific as possible as to what you want color, size, container if it matters to you. If you don’t want certain flowers, say so up front. Several florists mentioned that many customers don’t know a freesia from a phlox and refer to any variety of lily as a daylily, a common garden variety that lives for less than one day after it’s cut. So make sure you know what you’re asking for.
Ask about the policy for delivery when nobody is home. Florists usually end deliveries for the day by about 5 p.m. Some leave the arrangement on the front steps if nobody answers the door. Some leave a note on the door and park the arrangement with the nearest at-home neighbor. Others call before coming and assume they can leave a message and later arrange a convenient time to deliver.
Some swear that totally changing the water in the vase every one or two days can help a bouquet last longer. But if you can’t do that, at least top it off each day. If you have time, snipping off the stems daily also will help keep blooms fresh. Not all varieties last the same number of days, so pluck out blooms that wilt each day to extend the life of the arrangement.