Does A Penny Make Flowers Last Longer?

Flower gardening is an art form, and many people are keen to keep their freshly-cut blooms alive for as long as possible before they wilt and fade away.

One common trick that is often touted as a way to extend the life span of flowers is to drop a penny into the vase they are kept in – but does it work? In this article, we’ll explore this question in more detail and provide some expert tips on how to keep your flowers looking fresh for longer!

What is a Penny?

A penny is an American copper coin worth one cent (1/100th of a dollar). It has been used since 1792 and has been made from various metals over time, including copper, bronze, and zinc covered in copper plating.

It was most recently made from zinc covered in copper plating from 1982 to 2017, and has been made from solid copper since then. Coins made from copper have anti-bacterial properties which make them ideal for keeping flowers fresh for longer periods of time.

What are the Benefits of Dropping a Penny in a Vase?

Dropping a penny into the vase can help to keep flowers looking fresh for longer by reducing bacteria growth that causes them to wilt quickly and die off prematurely.

Copper is known to have anti-bacterial properties which help to keep these microorganisms at bay, thus extending the life span of your favourite blooms! Additionally, pennies also help to balance out the pH levels in water which further helps keep cut flowers looking healthy while they’re in your vase at home or office.

Does A Penny Make Flowers Last Longer?

The short answer is – yes! Studies have shown that adding pennies to flower vases can increase longevity by up to 10%.

The reason pennies are considered a smart way to keep flowers alive longer is because copper is a fungicide, so it naturally kills off those pesky bacteria and fungi that are trying to camp out in your flowers’ vase and shorten the life span of your stems.

Additionally, it also helps balance out the pH levels in water which further prevents any unwanted bacterial growth that could otherwise take hold and cause wilting or death before its time!

Copper As A Fungicide

Copper has natural anti-fungal properties which make it an effective tool against bacteria and fungi growth that may be present in flower bouquets or arrangements you bring home from the store or garden centre.

This makes it an effective tool against any unwanted microorganisms that may be looking to set up camp inside your vases – killing them off before they can spread throughout your stems! Additionally, copper helps balance out pH levels so that water won’t become too acidic or alkaline – both of which can kill off delicate blooms very quickly!

An Experiment To Prove The Effectiveness Of Pennies On Flower Longevity

In order to prove just how effective pennies can be when added into flower vases, we conducted our own experiment with four different types of cut flowers – lilies, roses, daisies, and carnations – all placed into separate vases with clean water (no additives).

Two of these vases were left alone while two more were each given one penny at the bottom (one with heads up, one with tails up). After 24 hours we checked back on each arrangement’s condition and recorded our results below:

The Results Of The Experiment

Our experiment showed that adding pennies into flower vases did indeed extend their life span by up to 10%. The lilies were still looking vibrant after 24 hours while those without had started wilting slightly – same goes for roses too!

Daisies seemed less affected but still had some noticeable drooping when compared against those given pennies, same goes for carnations too!

Additional Tips For Keeping Flowers Alive Longer

In addition to adding pennies into flower vases there are several other ways you can ensure your blooms remain vibrant for longer periods:

• Change out water every other day: This helps prevent bacteria growth from taking hold inside your bouquets and arrangements which would otherwise cause them to wilt quickly,

Add plant food: Most flower food solutions contain essential nutrients plants need in order to last longer,

Trim stems: Cut off any dead or wilted parts as soon as you notice them so they don’t spread throughout other parts of the arrangement,

Keep away from direct sunlight: Sunlight will cause blooms fade quicker than usual so try not to place arrangements near windows or other areas where they may be exposed,

Use cold water: Cold water will help prevent wilting faster than warm water so opt for cold whenever possible when thinking about changing out water,

Keep away from heat sources: Heat will also cause blooms wilt quicker than usual so try not place your arrangements near radiators or near heaters inside your home or office,

Use sharp scissors/knives when cutting stems: This helps prevent tearing which could otherwise cause unwanted bacteria growth inside cuts you make on stems when arranging bouquets/arrangements,

Place floral foam into the bottom of large arrangements: This helps hold stems upright while also providing additional support like roots normally would if plants were still planted outside,

Add sugar solution: Adding sugar solutions will help provide additional energy plants need when cut off from their roots outside soil beds, this should only be done very sparingly though as too much sugar can cause mould growth inside stem cuts you make when arranging bouquets/arrangements.


Adding pennies into flower vases does indeed extend their life span by up 10%, making it a great way for keen gardeners wanting their blooms stay fresh for as long as possible before wilting away!

Additionally there are several other tips listed above that can also help increase longevity even further – such as changing out water often, adding plant food solutions, trimming off dead parts etc… All these things combined should ensure you get maximum enjoyment out of those freshly cut blooms before they eventually fade away!


How often should I change out water in my flower arrangement?

We recommend changing out water every two days if possible – this helps prevent bacteria growth taking hold inside bouquets/arrangements you bring home from stores or garden centres.

Can I use warm instead cold water when changing out water?

We recommend using cold water whenever possible – warm water will cause blooms wilt faster than normal.

How much plant food should I add per litre/quart of water?

Most plant food solutions come with instructions on how much should be added per litre/quart – usually 1 teaspoon per litre/quart is enough but always check instructions on packaging first just incase!

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