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Is It Permissible To Put Flowers Into Water On Shabbat

Just one Halacha regarding the Halachot of Shabbat. The custom is that we have Hadasim or different flowers on Shabbat, either to make the house beautiful or to use them to smell, to make the 100 Berachot with ‘Bore Ase Besamin’, etc. Our question is today, are you allowed to put those flowers or Hadasim in water on Shabbat?

The Rama writes, in seman 336, [listen to the audio clip for the exact quote,] that it is permissible to put branches, for example, Hadasim or different types of flowers into water on Shabbat.

Now, there’s an argument how to learn this Rama amongst the Ahcharonim. Some Rabbis want to learn that the Rama was only talking about flowers or Hadasim that were in water from before Shabbat, so therefore it is permissible if you took it out, to return it into the water. But to put the flowers or Hadasim into the water for the 1st time on Shabbat, some want to say that its Asur (forbidden.) However, the Rashba, one of the great Rishonim, clearly writes that it is permissible to take a branch and, Lechatchila, even if it was never in water before Shabbat, or on Shabbat, that you can put flowers or Hadasim into a vase of water. And that’s the way Chacham Ovadia also was Posek in Yabiei HaOmer.

However, one point should be made. While it is permissible to put Hadasim and flowers into water, the Ramah stipulates, [listen to the audio clip for the exact quote,] so long as they do not have, let’s call them, buds, that when you put it into the water, its going to cause it to open. Let’s say, a rose that might be closed, that when you put into the water, it would cause it to open, that would be Asur. We are talking about either when it’s open already, or something like Hadasim where it’s just leaves. Then it would be permissible to get a vase, to put water, and actually put the Hadasim or flowers into the water.