Carnations are not only inexpensive, but they last a long time in arrangements. There are over 300 different varieties of carnation flowers available, including many different colors. Carnations normally grow approximately 18 to 24 inches in height.
Step 1 - Soil and Plant
When planting a carnation plant, make sure the soil is sandy, and that it crumbles and drains easily. Add fertilizer that is not rich in nitrogen or manure, as those elements will cause fewer blooms and cause the plants to split.
Choose a fertilizer with pine bark or rotten manure, and the soil should have a small amount of alkaline. Do not mulch carnations because they need a lot of air circulation in order to thrive.
Step 2 - Sunlight
Plant carnations in a place that will get about 4 or 5 hours of sunlight each day. These flowers do best in climates with moderate temperatures.
Step 3 - Watering
Keep carnations moist, but be careful not to overwater. Too much water will cause the flowers and leaves to wilt or start to yellow.
Be careful not to water the flower itself, only the soil. Use a spray bottle to make sure the water is evenly distributed.
Step 4 - Remove Bad Buds
When a carnation flower starts to wilt or die, it should be quickly removed from the rest of the flower. This will ensure that the rest of the flower and plant continues to grow.
Step 5 - Plucking
Pluck the carnations, leaving a few nodes at the base of the flower.
Step 6 - Place in a Vase
Remove some of the leaves to make sure that the flowers will fit the vase appropriately. Measure the approximate height of the stems against the vase to see how much you need to cut.
Cut the stems at a 45 degree angle so that the stems will continue to absorb the water, in turn helping them last longer. Place any plant food in the vase. Every few days, change the water and add more food.