How To Dry Carnations: More Than One Way To Preserve Their Beauty

With its long-lasting freshness and timeless beauty, the carnation flower is known as the “flower of love”. It is often used as birthday flowers or floral decor on special occasions like weddings.

How to dry carnations becomes the most frequently asked question for those who want to preserve their beauty.

This article will share everything about drying carnations and tips to get the best result from these meaningful flowers. Let’s get started!

What Is Drying Flowers?

how to dry carnations
Drying Flowers

Drying flowers is the process of removing moisture from the blooms.  This common preservation method helps maintain their beautiful appearances and vibrant colors for a long time.

Dried flowers have a lot of benefits.

First, they have a long shelf life while remaining in the best condition of coloring and quality. Dried flowers also need no watering, so we do not have to take care of or change them frequently.

Besides, the dried flower can be used in various ways, mostly for decorative purposes, such as in a floral arrangement, a flower bouquet, a table centerpiece, a part of a DIY project, or a potpourri on the bedside table.

Because of the abundance of flowers in all shapes, sizes, and colors, dried blooms are highly recommended for event decorations: a DIY wedding bouquet of white flowers or a beautiful table centerpiece full of yellow flowers on the dining table.

Dried petals are sometimes used in beauty products like bath bombs or bath salts.

Furthermore, dried flowers are also a good idea for storing important memories in life. An infinity bouquet can be a tangible reminder of memorable moments, like a wedding party.

How To Dry Carnations: 5 Alternative Preservation Methods Everyone Should Know

how to preserve a carnation
Way To Dry Carnations

How to dry a carnation? It is important to choose the right method for the type of flower you have to get the best results. Below are 5 alternative methods to dry and preserve carnations.

Method 1: Using A Book

Using a large, heavy book like a phone book to press flowers is an age-old method, but this book method is still very useful and interesting.


  • A heavy book
  • A strap (optional)
  • A heavy object to put on top (optional)
  • Unbleached paper

Step 1: Place your blooms between plain and unbleached sheets of paper before putting them inside the book. It is to avoid the print that can stain on petals.

Step 2: Close the book carefully.

Step 3: If you have a strap, wrap it around the book to help tighten down the pages. Put something heavy or a flat object on top to add more weight.

Step 4: Leave the book for about a month for the carnations to dry completely.

Opening it before this time can ruin your “masterpiece”. After a month, open the book and find your beautifully pressed carnation flower inside.

Method 2: Using The Press Method


  • A press kit


  • Two pieces of wood
  • A strap/ belt (optional)
  • Cardboards
  • Unbleached paper

You can easily buy a press kit from craft stores, or you create a simple press kit by following the steps below:

Step 1: Put the carnation flower inside cardboard and unbleached paper.

Step 2: Place them between two pieces of wood, and press tightly and carefully. You can tie a belt or a strap around while pressing.

Step 3: Let your flowers dry completely.

Method 3: Using Air Drying

The air-dry method is familiar when you need to dry something, not only flowers but also fruits and food.

Preparation: Elastic bands or rubber bands.

Step 1: Gather the carnations into small bunches. Use an elastic band to tie each bunch by the stem.

Step 2: Hang them upside down in a dark, dry place with good air circulation. Avoid direct sunlight or heat sources, and keep a minimum distance between bunches.

Step 3: Leave bunches for a few weeks to dry out. You will notice the transformation of air-drying flowers from bright, brilliant colors to light pink, dull yellow, or pale brown.

Method 4: Using Silica Gel

Drying flowers using silica gel, which you can find in craft stores, is the most suitable method for larger blossoms like carnations.


  • Silica gel
  • Facial covering mask
  • Gloves
  • An airtight glass or plastic container
  • A brush 
  • A hairspray

Step 1: Place flowers in the container with flower heads up. Ensure the container is at least 2 inches taller than the flowers.

Step 2: Because silica gel is a potent chemical with potentially harmful side effects, remember to wear your mask for facial covering and gloves. It is important for your health.

Step 3: Pour silica gel carefully and gently over the flower heads until you have a 1-inch single layer or more silica gel layer if you have many flowers. The gel now fully covers the carnations.

Step 4: Put a lid on top and set the airtight container aside for 3-5 days.

Step 5: Use a brush to gently remove the gel from the petals and mist the surface with unscented hairspray for protection.

Method 5: Using Microwave

This is a quicker alternative way to shorten the time needed to dry carnations.

Follow steps 1, 2, and 3 in the silica gel method. Make sure that you use a microwave-safe container.

Put the uncovered container in the microwave for one or two minutes. Check on the progress every 30 seconds to adjust the temperature timely.

Take it out of the microwave and let it cool down for up to one day.

A Few Tips Related To Drying Carnations

can you dry carnations
Tips To Drying Carnations

Drying carnations is an interesting process, with clear steps for each method. The finished product is beautiful blooms that you can preserve for a long time.

Although it is quite easy, there are several things that you should keep in mind to help your results even better.

  • When using the air drying method, avoid direct sunlight or heat sources on your carnation bunches if you don’t want their beautiful colors to fade.
  • Choose fresh carnations. When the flower petals are fresh, the pressing flat is easier, and you will receive beautiful dried carnations.
  • Use the microwave method to speed up the process.


Can You Dry Carnations In The Oven?

Yes, you can. Like the microwave method, baking your carnations in the oven is a quick method to dry them out.

Before placing flowers in the oven:

  • Remember to remove all the remaining foliage from flowers.
  • Put flowers on the baking rack, and turn on the oven for about 1-2 hours until they are shriveling.
  • Take them out and let them cool down.

What Is The Best Way To Dry Flowers?

Waiting for flower bunches to air dry by hanging them upside down for 3-4 weeks is impossible for those on a time budget.

Thus, if you are looking for a faster alternative to air drying,  you will need support from the machines: a microwave, an oven, an iron, or a dehydrator.

These methods are the best way to dry out flowers. You can have your flowers dried thoroughly in a few minutes or 24 hours maximum.

What Is The Most Efficient Way To Preserve A Carnation?

If time is not your concern, the air-dry method is a great idea to dry naturally, from delicate flowers to robust flowers.

However, carnations are often larger flowers, so using the microwave with the help of silica gel may be best to preserve them.

Microwave drying helps you to shorten the process and be assured that the result is still worth it.


Now, you have all the information and tips for ‘how to dry carnations’. What is special about flower drying is that it’s a fantastic process of art, and you can enjoy yourself while doing it.

That is the art of flower drying.

The methods are various, and choosing the most suitable way to dry your carnations depends on you.

Samuel Mark

Hello I am Samuel. Samuel's Garden is a garden blog where I share my experiences in garden caring and tree growth. Hope you enjoy it!

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button