Carnations: The Perfect Lucky Charm!

LivRio Magazine February 2024, powered by FloraLife

On March 17th, St. Patrick’s Day, many celebrate all things Irish, which is natural as St. Partick is the patron saint of Ireland. But did you know that St. Patrick was actually British? At age sixteen, he was kidnapped from Britain and taken to Ireland as a slave. He later escaped, trained as a priest and was called back to Ireland in a dream, eventually converting the population to Christianity.

Contrary to popular belief, St. Patrick did not banish all snakes from Ireland, the isle is naturally free of them. However, it is believed that this could be a metaphor for how he drove out Celtic Paganist beliefs and replaced them with Christianity.

The shamrock is also associated with St. Patrick, as legend has it that he used this plant, which was already considered sacred by the Celts, to describe the holy trinity.

Fast forward to today, the holiday has evolved into a celebration of Irish culture with parades, special foods, music, dancing, drinking and a whole lot of green. When it comes to celebrating St. Patrick’s Day, the dress code is always green, and although there aren’t many green flowers that fit the bill, Carnations are perfect in every way. Not only are naturally green varieties available, like Voragine, white carnations are the perfect base for green tint or spray color. Pair them up with Dianthus Green Trix or Bells of Ireland for a perfect St. Patrick’s Day arrangement.

Carnation Care and Handling Tips


  • Standard Carnations: Choose stems with closed blooms but showing full color.
  • Spray (Mini) Carnations: Choose stems with closed blooms, showing some color on lower buds.

Shipping and Storage

  • Shipping and storage temperatures should be 34 – 38° F with a relative humidity of 75-85%.
  • Dry storage is best, but only if temperatures are maintained between 34 to 38° F.

Re-hydration at Store Level and Storage

  • Start processing with a clean bucket, sanitized with FloraLife® D.C.D.® Cleaner.
  • If received dry packed, conditioning of stem ends is recommended to prevent blockage and promote uptake. Cut approximately 1” or more off stems. Use clean, sanitized clippers or knife, and treat with FloraLife® Quick Dip.
  • Place flowers in a holding treatment such as FloraLife® Express 200 or FloraLife® Clear 200.  Do not put flowers directly in metal/galvanized buckets. Use clean, high-quality water that has not been treated with a water softener as the salt levels can be damaging to flowers.
  • Store in a cooler at 34 – 38° F with a relative humidity of 75-85%
  • Allow minimum 2 hours to hydrate placing buckets in an area with good airflow.  
  • Always remember FIFO (first in/first out) when rotating Carnations or any other flowers.

Vase Care

  • Remove any leaves that might be below the vase solution.
  • Cut approximately 1” or more off stems. Use clean, sanitized clippers or knife. If received dry, treat with FloraLife® Quick Dip.
  • Immediately place flowers in vase solutions containing FloraLife® Crystal Clear or FloraLife® Express 300.

Special Considerations

  • Botrytis can develop in the blooms. Always maintain the correct temperature and humidity levels during storage.
  • Carnations and Mini Carnations are ethylene sensitive. Insist that your supplier treats with an ethylene action inhibitor such as EthylBloc™ during storage or transportation or FloraLife® EthylGuard at farm level to protect exposure. Do not store or display near ripening produce or products that produce ethylene.
  • When cutting stems, do so between nodes.

To learn more about Carnation care and handling click here:

*Product availability depends upon geographical region.
Check for more information.