(BPT) - Your day is feeling dreary until the doorbell rings. Who could it be? It's a surprise delivery full of beautiful blooms that instantly brings a smile to your face. Whether for Valentine's Day or any celebration, flowers always make someone feel special.

Receiving flowers as a gift is a joy and you want that feeling to last for as long as possible. Luckily, you don't have to be a florist to give them the proper care they need. Just follow these simple steps from the experts at 1-800-Flowers.com to give your blooms the extended life they deserve.

Step 1: Remove foliage

Remove all foliage from the flower stems that could fall below the water line in the vase. Not only does this give your display a clean look, but it also reduces bacteria growth in the water so your flowers stay healthy.

Step 2: Use warm water

Fill the vase two-thirds full with bath-temperature water. Flowers drink cold water more slowly, which lengthens the hydration process. Warm water is lighter and easier for flowers to absorb quickly.

Step 3: Feed your flowers

It's best to use the floral food that arrives with the flowers and follow according to package direction. However, if you misplace this packet, you can always create your own by adding three teaspoons of lemon-lime soda (non-diet) and one teaspoon of bleach to one quart of water.

Step 4: Cut stems

Right before placing your flowers in the prepared vase, give the bottom of each stem a fresh cut at an angle. This prevents the stem from sitting flush on the bottom of the vase, allowing maximum water intake. This is particularly important for roses, a popular gift for Valentine's Day.

Step 5: Water and recut

Check the water level in your vase on a daily basis and add fresh water as needed. Around the third day you'll need to recut the flowers. Do this by removing the flowers carefully, so as not to change the design. A large rubber band or tie can keep them together until you recut the stems; remove any flowers that have passed their prime. Clean the vase and refill with warm water two-thirds full, plus more floral food. Remove the tie and replace the flowers in the vase.

With a little TLC, your flowers will continue to look beautiful for several days. For more floral care tips and unique gift ideas, visit www.1-800-Flowers.com.