How to Revive Wilted Hydrangeas

DIY, Living

Hydrangea hack: how to revive a wilted hydrangea

Hydrangeas are so showy and beautiful – but they wilt SO easily!  This simple little hack (with a video tutorial) will help bring your hydrangeas back to life.

The name hydrangea comes from the Greek “hydor,” meaning water, and “angos,” meaning jar or vessel. Translation: water barrel!  These gorgeous pom pom like flowers need water, and when they don’t get it, they wilt.

Hydrangea hack: how to revive a wilted hydrangea

Hydrangea hack: how to revive a wilted hydrangea

Hydrangeas have a woody stem that can make it difficult for the flower to get the water that it needs. Trimming the stems at an angle using a sharp knife and adding a small slit in the stem helps it suck up more water.

I used to cut the ends of my flowers with scissors but have switched to using a sharp knife at the recommendation of my friends at Byland’s – apparently scissors pinch the stems, damaging them and reducing the amount of water that they can take up.

We used hydrangea’s as part of our Mother’s Day Fraîche Table and while they were stunning to look at when we first made the flower arrangement, it wasn’t long before they were looking rather sad. This little trick saved me from throwing them away and I was left with flowers that looked fresh and new!

Hydrangea hack: how to revive a wilted hydrangea

And totally unrelated but interesting, did you know that the colour of the hydrangea is impacted by the pH of the soil?   I’m currently trying to transform my pink hydrangeas in my garden into blue ones… for a full tutorial and a bit more information check out this article!

Note that there is a point of no return where a hydrangea, if left to wilt for too long, will not revive.  The good news is that this hack is so simple and requires nothing fancy … why not give it a try!?

Materials You Will Need:

  • Wilted hydrangeas
  • Hot water (almost boiling)
  • Vase
  • Sharp knife
  • Cutting board


  1. Bring a kettle or pot of water to a boil and set aside to cool slightly.  It should still be very hot.  Pour the water into a vase.
  2. Place the hydrangeas on the cutting board and use the sharp knife to cut the end of the hydrangea at a 45 degree angle. Then cut a small slit vertically up the middle of the newly trimmed stem.
  3. Place the hydrangea(s) in the vase filled with hot water.
  4. Let sit for a minimum of one hour and voila! Revived hydrangeas.



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8 Comments on “How to Revive Wilted Hydrangeas”

  1. Ana

    Hi Tori, Hydrangea tip from my flower vendor: To keep the flowers looking fresh, spray them daily with water. This has worked for me every time, and I live in Florida where the heat makes it a challenge to maintain these beauties, even indoors. This trick makes my flowers last about 1.5 – 2 weeks. Hope it helps! Love your recipes and tips! Ana

  2. Debbie Baxter

    Thanks for the hydrangea tip, as I have a lovely bush flowering in my North Van garden . I ‘ve been wanting to cut them but worry re wilting, not any more. For one other tip I got from the floral lady at Thrify’s grocery store in Nvan is, when cutting and putting Gerber daisies in a vase add a few drops of bleach(javex) yes I know it sounds odd but it really works. I sometimes put a drop or two in the small vessel with a floral frog in it when I’m decorating my table for a dinner party. Thanks for everything. Cheers Debbie B

  3. Tanya

    Dip the stem of the hydrangea in alum powder after you cut it for extra longevity. Ex-wedding florist over here 🙋‍♀️ Works great. Also you can fill your sink with warm water and submerse the whole bloom and stem and they’ll pop back too.

  4. Tami

    I grow Hydrangeas in my garden, love them and bring them into my house to enjoy Awesome tip! I tried it today and it worked! I am paying it forward and sharing with my friends! Thank you 😊

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