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How to Dry Rose Petals In Under Two Minutes

A bowl of freshly picked pink roses on a rustic wooden table with petals scattered all around.

Are you looking to learn how to dry rose petals quickly and efficiently? If so, this article is for you. We’ll explore a unique method that allows you to preserve the beauty of roses in under two minutes using a microwave. If you are a crafter looking for new techniques or simply someone who appreciates the timeless appeal of dried flowers, this guide is perfect for you. In this article, you will discover the microwaving method that can transform how you preserve these delicate blossoms. This method will ensure the flowers retain their vibrant color and charm for various applications.

In today’s fast-paced world, finding efficient ways to enjoy hobbies and crafts is important. There are many methods to dry flowers and petals, but they can be time-consuming and may not always provide the desired results. However, with the microwaving method, you can achieve beautifully preserved petals quickly and easily. Say goodbye to long drying times and hello to instant gratification as you learn the secrets to preserving nature’s delicate treasures in a fraction of the time.

The Quick Cheat Method for Drying Rose Petals

So, the trick to drying rose petals is to use a microwave. Once you learn how to preserve flower petals this way, you might find yourself hanging out by the microwave more often.

I tried the microwave method while testing the best flower drying practices. The microwave’s silica gel method was the best way to dry full flowers, but it wasn’t great for single rose petals. There is an easy trick for drying rose petals; it doesn’t require silica gel, a flower press, or patience. (bonus on the patience)

It does take a bit of time to separate your rose petals, and if you need a lot of petals, it will take several batches to get it done, but honestly, it’s so easy to do that none of that matters.  It all goes so quickly that you could have a massive pile of dried rose petals in a short amount of time.

The paper towel and microwave method is too easy.  It makes perfectly dried rose petals in 2 minutes flat. They are dry and stiff but not crumbly. You can crumble them, but they don’t just shatter when you touch them. This method makes the dried rose petals perfect for projects like potpourri or rose water.

Dried rose petals on a bright white background. Dried rose petals on a bright white background.
  • Roses
  • Plate
  • Paper towels
  • Microwave

It doesn’t get any easier than this!

Dried rose petals on a metal scoop against a bright white background. Dried rose petals on a metal scoop against a bright white background.

Step 1: Prepare the Rose Petals

Gently pluck the rose petals away from the flower head and place them on a paper towel on a microwave-safe plate. Be careful that you have no overlapping petals and that the petals are arranged in a single layer.

Keep only the fresh-looking petals, with no wilted ends or dry brown bits.

When placing your rose petals onto the paper towel, make sure that the petals do not overlap at all.  If they do overlap, they may stick to one another.

Rose petals on a paper towel being readied to be dried in a microwave. Rose petals on a paper towel being readied to be dried in a microwave.

Step 2: Place the Plate of Rose Petals In the Microwave For Two Minutes

Place the plate into a microwave and set the timer for 2 minutes.

Microwaves vary significantly in wattage, so I will tell you to watch that first batch closely to ensure 2 minutes is not too long.  Since I have no way of knowing the power of your microwave, 2 minutes may be too little or too much, so gauge that first batch by watching it closely. 

After two minutes, check to see if the rose petals are dry.  If you started with fresh or dew-covered roses, you might need to add 30 seconds.  I found that my rose petals were perfectly dry at the two-minute mark.

You may find the outermost petals dry before the petals in the middle of the plate. Check them at the two-minute mark, remove any crisp petals, and continue to dry the rest.

Be careful with the plate; it will be hot.

Pink rose petals on a white papertowel. Pink rose petals on a white papertowel.

Step 3: Allow the Rose Petals To Cool

Set up a small cooling area for your petals. As you remove them from the microwave, place them on the second piece of paper towel to cool down.

After a few minutes, they are ready to use in all your craft projects.  There is no need to wait 24 hours, seven days, or 30 days pressed in a book. You can immediately start using your dried rose petals for any craft projects.

Two things to note: the scent will not hold. You may have a residual smell, but most of the rose scent will vanish after drying.

Your flower petals might also change color. My bright pink roses turned a beautiful lilac when dried.  My deep red roses remained red but dried to a gorgeous shade of red.

Dried rose petals crumbled against a bright white background. Dried rose petals crumbled against a bright white background.

Why We Don’t Recommend Air Drying Rose Petals

Rose petals do well when pressed in a book; they come out looking like very thin potato chips, but the process takes up to 30 days.

Air-drying or sun-drying rose petals also takes 2-3 weeks, but the petals will brown substantially if allowed to dry this way. The drying process is unpredictable with rose petals, and you can end up with moldy petals if your inside humidity is too high.

Direct sunlight will also deteriorate the color more than rapid drying in the microwave. The dried petals will look quite faded.

What are the Best Types of Roses to Use?

It doesn’t matter what type of roses you use. You can use flowers that you have purchased or fresh roses from your garden in the summer.

The only important thing is that you have fresh flowers. If the flowers start to wilt or brown, they will dry but won’t look pretty or vibrant. It is best to start with fresh flowers. Some tutorials suggest using flowers that have just started to open, but it is not necessary. You can use flower buds and remove the base and petals. You can choose any color or type of roses that you prefer.

Related:  See our post on how to keep your cut roses fresh for as long as possible.  Or, if you want to dry your bouquet, see ways to make your dried flowers last.

Lovely pink roses resting in a white bowl. Lovely pink roses resting in a white bowl.

Expert Tips For Using Dried Rose Petals

If you dry your rose petals, you will want to use them – here are a few fun ways to put those petals to use around your home:

  1. Homemade Teas: If you’ve used organic or chemical-free roses from your tea garden, consider drying them for homemade teas. Their delicate flavor and aroma can add a delightful touch to your brews.
  2. Potpourri Perfection: Dried rose petals are perfect to make potpourri. While the natural scent may dissipate over time, you can enhance it by adding a few drops of your favorite essential oils or artificial fragrances. Consider using bulk petals as a base and infusing them with scents like grapefruit and bergamot for an invigorating aroma.
  3. Beauty Enhancers: Incorporate dried rose petals into your beauty routine by using them in body scrubs or bath bombs. Their gentle exfoliating properties and subtle fragrance can elevate your self-care rituals to a spa-like experience.
  4. Crafting Delights: Get creative with your dried rose petals by adding them to homemade papers. Create stunning floral-themed notebooks or handmade wrapping paper that add a personalized touch to your gifts.
  5. Endless Possibilities: These are just a few ideas to get you started, but the possibilities are endless. Incorporate dried rose petals into your favorite recipes, such as baked goods or infused oils. Share your unique ideas and creations in the comments below to inspire others in the community. With a surplus of dried rose petals, let your imagination run wild and discover new ways to enjoy their beauty and versatility.

FAQ

How long do rose petals last?

Fresh rose petals last only a few days before they wilt. On the other hand, dried rose petals can last 2-3 years if stored in an airtight container.

Can you dry other flower petals with a microwave?

Whole flowers do not dry thoroughly in the microwave without the assistance of some silica gel, but the petals by themselves do dry quite thoroughly. Petals like sunflower, zinnia, dahlia, and cosmos work exceptionally well.

Tools

  • Paper towel
  • Plate
  • Microwave

Instructions

  1. Separate your petals and place them on a piece of paper towel on a microwave-safe plate.
  2. Keep only the petals that are fresh-looking, no wilted ends, or brown dry bits. 
  3. Make sure when placing your rose petals onto the paper towel that the petals do not at all overlap.  If they do overlap they may stick to one another. 
  4. Place the plate into a microwave and set the timer for 2 minutes.   

Microwaves vary greatly in wattage so I am going to tell you to watch that first batch closely to make sure 2 minutes is not too much time.  Since I have no way of knowing the power of your microwave, 2 minutes may be too little or too much so gauge that first batch by watching it closely. 

  1. After the two minutes check to see if the rose petals are dry.  If you started out with really fresh, or dew-covered roses you may need to add an additional 30 seconds. 
  2. Set up a small drying area for your petals.  As you remove them from the microwave you can place them on the second piece of paper towel to cool down. 
  3. After a few minutes, they are ready to use in all your craft projects. 

Notes

The scent will not hold.  You may end up with a bit of a residual scent, but most of the rose scent will vanish after drying.

Your flower petals might also change color.  I started with a bright pink flower petals that dried to a beautiful lilac purple color. 

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Drying rose petals with a microwave quickly and effectively opens up a world of creative possibilities. Whether crafting homemade teas, enhancing beauty products, or adding a floral touch to your crafts, this technique offers convenience without compromising quality. So, grab your roses and microwave, and let your imagination run wild.

Author: Laura Kennedy

Writer & Owner of Little Yellow Wheelbarrow

Laura is a highly skilled gardener and fervent flower enthusiast. Despite her playful battle with plant spacing guidelines, Laura’s work inspires gardeners to create thriving, beautiful spaces that reflect both creativity and sustainability.

Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on November 22, 2022. It was updated on February 15, 2024, with expert tips, related posts, a table of contents, and improved formatting for a better reader experience.