At Rio, we’re proud to bring you a wide variety of standard, garden, and spray roses. As part of our vast selection, we also offer tinted roses. Nature already provides the most incredible colors and combinations, but sometimes customers want something unique, and that’s where tinting can make all the difference. In this article, we’re taking you behind the scenes to explain how our tinting process works.
We use two different processes to tint roses. The first is stem dyeing, where the flowers absorb the dye through the stems. This process requires that roses be drier than usual, so when we harvest them, we don’t place them in water before sending them to the post-harvest location. Slightly dehydrating the roses makes them “thirsty” for easier ink absorption.
The process of dehydrating the roses can take anywhere from 24 to 48 hours. Also, when harvesting roses from the farm, we keep the stems longer than the final length, as we need to cut them right before absorption.
We stem dye our roses in a separate room, held at a higher temperature than the rest of the post-harvest area. The colored ink is also kept at a higher temperature, between 34 and 37 degrees Celsius (93 to 98 degrees Fahrenheit).
When cutting the stems before placing them in ink, we cut the bases differently depending on how many colors we prepare. For example, for a rose with three colors, the stem will be cut into four sections. We do this manually with a razor, cutting up to 10 centimeters. Then, each stem section is placed in a different test vase, three of which have a different colored ink, and the fourth contains water for hydration. This part of the process can take anywhere from 48 to 72 hours.
The final step of the process is to evaluate the tinting results. If any part of the bloom doesn’t achieve the desired color, we touch it up by spray painting.
If we spray paint the roses instead of stem dying, they don’t need to be dried out, and the stems are not cut longer. Instead, we “Russian cut” the stems to allow for a more open head and easier spray application.
As with stem-dyed roses, spray-painted roses may have different colors on different petals, so during the spray process, we cover the petals which won’t be tinted that color. Spray-painted roses take less overall time than stem-dyed roses, but it is still time-consuming and labor-intensive.
OTHER IMPORTANT POINTS ABOUT TINTED ROSES
• While we can tint most roses using either spray painting or stem dyeing, some designs both methods to achieve the desired colors.
• Roses must be fully dry after tinting before adding glitter. To apply glitter, we brush on a special glue, then put on the glitter dust. This two-step procedure increases the time to process the flowers.
• It’s important to note that the waste (shrink) on tinted roses is higher than average, particularly if the flowers didn’t tint well. The increase can be up to 10% in some cases.
• Since both tinting processes are labor intensive and require additional steps, the lead time for placing orders is longer, and the price is higher. Additionally, with stem dyeing, the farm starts with a longer grade which impacts the price.
Tinted roses can be a beautiful choice. Now that you know more about them, you can better promote them to your customers. We look forward to seeing what unique designs you create with Rio Tinted Roses!