How to make potpourri last: Expert Tips

Potpourri is a wonderful way to add a pleasant scent to your home. Made from a mixture of dried flowers, herbs, spices, and essential oils, potpourri not only adds a touch of natural beauty, but also creates a welcoming and aromatic atmosphere. However, the scent of potpourri tends to fade over time, requiring frequent refreshing to maintain its fragrance. In this article, we will explore expert tips on how to make potpourri last, ensuring that its delightful aroma lingers in your home for a long time to come.

1. Choose the right ingredients

The key to a long-lasting potpourri is choosing the right ingredients. Choose dried flowers, herbs, and spices that retain their fragrance over time. Scented flowers such as lavender, rose petals, and chamomile are excellent choices because of their natural fragrance. In addition, consider incorporating aromatic herbs such as rosemary, thyme, and mint, which have strong and long-lasting scents.
Incorporating spices such as cinnamon, cloves, and star anise not only adds a pleasant aroma, but also helps preserve the fragrance of the potpourri. These spices have natural preservative properties that can help extend the life of the fragrance. Experiment with different combinations of ingredients to find the perfect blend that suits your preferences and enhances the longevity of your potpourri.

2. Proper Drying Techniques

The drying process is crucial to preserving the fragrance of the botanicals used in potpourri. To ensure optimal drying, harvest flowers and herbs at their peak freshness. Bundle them and hang them upside down in a cool, dark, well-ventilated area. This method allows for gradual drying and preserves the natural fragrance and color of the botanicals.

It’s important to note that some flowers and herbs may lose their fragrance during the drying process. To counteract this, consider adding a few drops of essential oils with similar scents to the dried botanicals. The essential oils will enhance the fragrance and replace any lost scent, resulting in a longer-lasting potpourri.

3. Proper Storage

Proper storage is essential to maintain the potency of the potpourri’s fragrance. To ensure its longevity, store your potpourri in an airtight glass or ceramic container. These materials are ideal because they prevent odors from escaping and protect the botanicals from moisture, which can diminish their fragrance over time.

Keep the potpourri container away from direct sunlight and excessive heat, as these factors can accelerate the evaporation of essential oils and weaken the fragrance. Also, avoid storing potpourri in areas with high humidity, such as bathrooms, as moisture can adversely affect the fragrance. By storing your potpourri properly, you can prolong its fragrance and enjoy its aroma for a longer period of time.

4. Refresh your potpourri regularly.

To maintain a long-lasting fragrance, it’s important to refresh your potpourri regularly. Every few weeks, gently stir the potpourri to reactivate the fragrance and redistribute it throughout the mixture. This process helps release any trapped aromas and ensures that the entire blend continues to exude a delightful fragrance.
You can also enhance the fragrance of your potpourri by adding a few drops of complementary essential oils. Simply sprinkle the oil over the potpourri and mix well, allowing the oils to infuse into the dried botanicals. This method not only enlivens the fragrance, but also adds new layers of complexity to the scent, making your potpourri even more captivating.

5. Display considerations

The placement of your potpourri can significantly affect its longevity. Choose areas in your home that are not exposed to direct sunlight or high heat. Sunlight and heat can accelerate the evaporation of essential oils, resulting in a shorter life for the fragrance of your potpourri.

Also, consider placing potpourri in areas with good air circulation. Gentle airflow will help distribute the fragrance throughout the room, allowing you to enjoy the scent from different angles. Ideal locations include entryways, living rooms, and bedrooms, where the scent can create a welcoming and soothing atmosphere.
In conclusion, by carefully selecting the right ingredients, using proper drying techniques, storing your potpourri properly, regularly refreshing the blend, and considering the display location, you can make your potpourri last a long time. These expert tips will help you create a fragrant and inviting atmosphere in your home, allowing you to enjoy the delightful scent of potpourri for a long time to come.


How do you make potpourri long lasting?

To make potpourri long lasting, follow these steps:

  1. Choose dried botanicals: Select dried flowers, herbs, and spices that have a strong fragrance and retain their scent for a long time.
  2. Add fixatives: Incorporate fixatives into your potpourri mix. Fixatives are substances that help trap and preserve the scent. Some popular fixatives include orris root, benzoin resin, and calamus root.
  3. Add essential oils: Enhance the fragrance of your potpourri by adding a few drops of essential oils. Choose oils that complement the natural scent of the botanicals you’ve selected.
  4. Store properly: Store your potpourri in an airtight container to prevent the scent from dissipating. Place the container in a cool, dark area to maintain the fragrance for a longer period.
  5. Refresh the scent: Over time, the scent of potpourri may fade. To refresh the fragrance, add a few drops of essential oil to the mixture and gently toss the botanicals to distribute the new scent evenly.

What are some popular botanicals used in potpourri?

Common botanicals used in potpourri include dried flowers such as roses, lavender, and chamomile, as well as aromatic herbs like rosemary, thyme, and mint. Spices such as cinnamon sticks, cloves, and star anise are also popular choices.

What is a fixative in potpourri making?

A fixative in potpourri making is a substance that helps retain and preserve the scent of the botanicals. It acts as a base or carrier for the fragrance, allowing it to slowly release over time. Examples of fixatives commonly used in potpourri include orris root, benzoin resin, calamus root, and dried oakmoss.

Can I make my own fixative for potpourri?

Yes, you can make your own fixative for potpourri. One popular homemade fixative is a mixture of orris root powder, dried oakmoss, and powdered gum benzoin. This combination helps absorb and preserve the scent of the botanicals used in potpourri.

How long does potpourri typically last?

The longevity of potpourri can vary depending on factors such as the quality of botanicals used, the effectiveness of the fixative, and storage conditions. On average, well-made potpourri can retain its fragrance for several months to a year. However, over time, the scent will gradually fade, and the potpourri may need to be refreshed or replaced.