Easy Trick to Arrange Short Flowers in a Tall Vase

Now that it’s officially Spring, we have seen some pretty amazing sales on flowers… especially tulips!
How-to-arrange-tulips-2After a dreary winter these pops of bold color (typically under $5 a bunch!) are exactly what our homes are craving. And don’t even get us started on how amazing these flowers are at lasting in a vase longer than some of our other favorites (yeah… we’re looking at you hydrangeas). How-to-arrange-tulipsTulips in spring are always a good idea & today I thought it was only fitting to pop in with a super quick tip that has made such a difference in helping me display these beautiful blooms in some of my favorite vases.
How-to-arrange-tulips-4This is a shot I took when I came home from the grocery store and plopped the tulips in one of my taller vases. It’s definitely not bad-looking (some may even prefer this tighter look), but I like my tulips to droop out of the vase. That way the arrangement seems to take up more room on the table and it makes a larger visual impact.

Unfortunately these stems were too short, so they didn’t have enough height to droop outside of the vase. Instead they are only peeking out of the top, which makes a smaller visual impact.

Give your Flowers Height

But with a super easy trick, I was able to use the same vase and achieve the bigger, more droopy arrangement I wanted from the start. My secret weapon?!

A mini tupperware bowl! You can use an actual bowl or a heavy measuring cup (these actually work better). Since this tupperware bowl fit the circumference of the vase perfectly, I’m using it instead.

How-to-arrange-tulips-6This mini tupperware bowl (or whatever household item you choose) will add “secret” height to the bottom of your vase so that your short flowers will look a lot taller when you plop them in the vase.

The taller they are, the more opportunity you will have to arrange them how you like. How-to-arrange-tulips-7

After you add the bowl upside down into the bottom of the vase, add water and no one will ever know about your secret weapon.How-to-arrange-tulips-3Then all you have to do is plop the short stemmed tulips (or whatever flower you have) into the vase and arrange accordingly! Not all tulips start as droopy as these did, but over time your short stems will start drooping around the vase and will make a bigger visual impact when on display. How-to-arrange-tulips-10For such a simple trick, I’m always surprised at what a difference it makes. You may not have to use this trick every time, but I wanted to share it just in case you come across short blooms that you want to display in your favorite tall vase.

Create a Tight Arrangement

And for those large mouth vases that tend to spread your flowers around the mouth of the vase, think about adding a smaller vase inside the larger one. This will create a narrower opening. How-to-arrange-tulips-11There’s been plenty of times where I sneak a mason jar inside a larger, more stylish vase. This way the flowers are tighter and I can still use the vase I had my heart set on.

In cases like this, I usually only put water in the mason jar (or the skinnier vase) and not in the large vase too. That’s what I did with this flower arrangement of spray roses…

round_modern_coffee_table-roses_vase_flowersSo what do you guys think… do any of you already use tricks like this? I love splurging on fresh flowers, and hate when I don’t have the perfect vase to fit the specific bouquet I purchased.  Any tips or tricks to creating a solution OR keeping my flowers alive as long as possible are very welcome! bridget_sig

P.S. Looking to update your vase collection?
You may enjoy checking out this post — 6 Vases Every Homeowner Should Own.

how to display tulips


  • Gorgeous! Love tulips! I remember reading years ago about poking the top of the stem (just under the flower part) with a pin. I can’t remember why… my mother-in-law just mentioned yesterday that she puts a nickel in the vase water and that prolongs their freshness. Now, that is a Canadian nickel, so given the exchange rate, if you used an US nickel, it should be 25% more effective, lol! ????

    • The exchange rate literally made us LOL. Thank you for that this gloomy morning, Kerri! And we’ve heard about the nickel (or penny) in order to get the tulips to stand up taller, which we still haven’t tried!

  • So smart!

  • Hillary

    Great tips! Also, if you don’t already use the hydrangea bath trick, give it a try – you can revive them over and over again!

    • We still have to try that because I HATE when hydrangeas die quickly!

  • Michelle Galindo

    These all are really useful tips. The main thing which matters is the vase. Choose the perfect one that goes well with your decor.
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