What is Floral Freeze Drying (Lyophilization) ?
The basic principle of floral freeze drying (Lyophilization) is the removal of water from frozen botanicals as water vapor, and collection of this water vapor as ice in a condenser. With the botanicals solidly frozen during the process, and under a deep vacuum, shrinkage is eliminated or minimized, and near perfect preservation will result.
The process requires the flowers to be frozen and then gradually the temperature is raised to stimulate sublimation (ice crystals changing directly to water vapor). Over a period of days all the water from the botanicals will sublimate and go into a condensation chamber. The water vapor turns back into ice in this very cold (-40° F or lower) condensation chamber.
Defrosting the condensation chamber removes moisture from the freeze drying (Lyophilization) system. When ice quits forming in the condenser the load is dry. Often the only requirements for long term storage of freeze dried materials is the prevention of moisture re-entering the product.
When the Freeze Dried Flower Industry began in 1988, the flowers were fragile, shattered easily, and had a tendency to change color. These problems have all been addressed through chemistry. The pre- and post- treating chemicals used today meet the needs for color stabilization, durability, and longevity in freeze dried flowers.
Floral Preservation Is An Art Form: For this reason we will need to get your flowers within 2-3 days of the event to get the highest standard of preservation. While most flowers freeze dry well, some flowers may be more challenging. We will notify you if we are unable to freeze dry them successfully.