EASY AND FREE FLOWER ARRANGEMENTS

foraged flowers in a white jug on a table

Putting together free flower arrangements is super easy! A beautiful arrangement can brighten up any spot you put it in! I really love to arrange one type of flower en mass. Today let’s talk about foraging for blooms to make pretty and easy arrangements!

Over the last year, I have discovered how many flowers and other organics I have around me that I really have never noticed before!

COFFEE TABLE WITH AN URN OF KOUSA DOGWOOD FLOWERS IN IT

Flowers are an essential part of my decor. They create such beauty and make me happy!

At our StoneGable house, we had lots of gardens and all kinds of flowers growing from early spring to late fall. And heading out to the gardens in the early morning to pick flowers for arrangements was such a joy!

We have lots of flowers at our Tanglewood home too, but they are mostly around our home in landscaped beds. I can cut them but I also want the blooms to grace the outside of our home. So I cut them sparingly.

Buying flowers is always an option, but they can be an expensive item in my grocery budget every week!

So what’s a flower loving girl to do? Well, I just happened upon a very fun way to get free flowers and organics!

I’ve started foraging!

WHAT IS FORAGING FOR A FLOWER ARRANGEMENT

Some of us love yard sales or searching for a treasure in vintage shops! I LOVE foraging!

What is foraging? It is finding flowers and other organics in my own yard or in my neighbors (with permission), in woods, and meadows or along roadsides! Really foraging is finding flowers and organics wherever they grow naturally and you can pick them legally.

HOW IT ALL STARTED

This spring I was desperate for flowers in my home!

I had just bought 70 peony blooms and spent a bit of a fortune. And the bloom were absolutely glorious… for 2 days!!!!!

UGH! What a disappointment!!! And what a waste of money!

While I was putting the spent peony blooms in the trash I looked out my window at the beautiful Kousa dogwood tree in full bloom.

I had never really given any thought that the dogwood blooms might be perfect for a flower arrangement!

The bad news is that I thought the tree was on our neighbors property.

No problem, we have great neighbors so I asked them if I could take a few cuttings from the blooming tree. To my surprise and delight, they told me the tree was on our property.

I went right out with my clippers and cut a couple branches.

HOW I MADE THE ARRANGEMENT

KOUSA DOGWOOD ON A TABLE

One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned about creating a foraged arrangement is you usually need to “tame” the organics you bring in to make an arrangement.

When I pick flowers around my home I take off all the leaves I won’t need and choose flowers that are in the best shape.

And when I get them at the grocery store, all the stems are straight and lots of the extra leaves have been removed.

Not so with many foraged organics. The Kousa dogwood was filled with leaves and its shape maybe not so perfect.

So I gave it a massive haircut!

SNIPPING LEAVES AND SPENT BLOOM FROM A FORAGED PLANT

Here is just a little bit of what I trimmed away from the branch. Mostly leaves!

CLIPPINGS LEFT OVER FROM A FORAGED KOUSA DOGWOOD BRANCH

I found a white jug in the basement that I thought would work with the shape of the branch.

TaDa!!!! Don’t you love the movement this arrangement has? Who knew lurking under all the foliage was a branch that had such an attractive shape?

A FOYER TABLE WITH A BEAUTIFUL FREE FLOWER ARRANGEMENT ON IT

I channeled the Bonsai master in me and clipped and cut to create a little foraged work of art!

I liked the look so much I create a second foraged flower arrangement for our great room.

DOGWOOD FLOWER ARRANGEMENT ON A COFFEE TABLE

Now I’m hooked! I can see possibilities everywhere!

TIPS FOR FORAGED FLOWER ARRANGEMENTS

I’m just a beginner when it comes to foraging flower and other organics but here’s what I’ve learned so far…

  • when you start looking for organics around you, you will find them
  • start looking for things to make pretty arrangement around your home first
  • not all foraged bloom and bits and pieces can be made into big showy arrangements but they can be put in small bottles and tiny vases and they look so so pretty!
  • look for organics on roadsides, on walks in the woods or meadows
  • don’t take all the flowers, be earth-friendly
  • take a container of water, garden gloves and a pair of clippers with you in the car
  • only take what you know you will use
  • make sure you can legally pick the flowers you have your eye on
  • don’t overlook flowering weeds, lots of them are so pretty

I been filling 5 clear glass bottles with small snips of organics from around my house. As something is spent, I replace it. I really love how pretty and simple this foraged arrangement looks!

I’m on the lookout for Queen Ann’s Lace that grows thick along the roadside in July.

Here’s what the bottles looked like last month…

5 BOTTLES FILLED WITH TINY BIT OF ORGANICS MAKING AN EASY AND PRETTY FORAGED ARRANGEMENT


And here is what I filled the bottles with yesterday…

TABLE WITH PRETTY  LEAVES IN A BOTTLE

Creating pretty foraged flower arrangements is easy and free!

It’s a wonderful new way to look at the world!!!!

urn filled with Kousa dogwood blooms on a coffee table

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21 Comments

  1. Thank you for sharing your blossom ideas with us. You have shown that things don’t have to cost a fortune to be beautiful and interesting. Having said that, I am totally obsessed with the planter in the peony photo. Would you mind providing the source information for that piece? Have a Happy 4th!

    1. I wish I had a source for you Sherry. You and lot of other StoneGable readers love it. I found it at HomeGoods years ago. In all this time I have not been able to find a source!

    2. I have been a wildflower foragers for many years and continue to look for plant material along the roadside when driving.Even with extensive gardens on our property it is still a thrill to find some pretty wildflowers to add to my arrangements. I just came across some beautiful Browneyed Susan’s and
      Red Beebalm to put in a white pitcher.With some Daylilies and Hydrangeas from my yard
      this makes a lovely summer bouquet. Every season their are clippings to be had if you look.

  2. I would add, if you’ll be foraging in fields and such, become familiar with poisonous plants. Poison ivy, oak, and what may be poisonous for your pets to consume.

  3. Hi from Australia. Once again you inspire me with your creativity. I love the bottles. In Australia we have exotic wild flowers like wild Orchids, violets etc however illegal to pick. But the odd garden branch etc not a problem. Must ask is Bobby OK with this horrific pandemic?

    1. Thank you Heather! Bobby is okay so far. We stay pretty self quarantine because he is probably at higher risk of getting Covid. We are careful about social distancing the masking up.
      I really miss people!!!!

  4. Your post really hit home with me. I guess that I have always been a “forager.” As long as I can remember I loved to bring in flowers, honeysuckle vines, “weeds”, anything that I thought would look good in a glass or vase in the house. My Mom said that she would get so aggravated at me because she couldn’t keep a bloom in the yard! But I’ve always thought that most tall weeds were neglected floral treasures. And yes, tree branches/palm fronds/etc seem to make the most exquisite arrangements! Thanks so much for sharing and bringing back special memories. My Mom, who passed in March, would have gotten a kick out of it.

  5. I would just add to be careful of any plant material you are bringing into your house if you have pets. And…. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to get my (otherwise-sweet) indoor cats to leave ANY plant material alone — whether flowers from my husband, potted plants, or clippings from the yard — and even if it is not poisonous to them, it seems to make them throw up. Cleaning up is not fun for Mommy. 🙁 So I’ve just given up on live plants since these two came into our lives. When I get flowers for the table for a special occasion, I put them on the table at the last minute, and send them home with a guest. If any one has any other ideas, I will love to hear it… but, of course, the cats are family so not going anywhere.

  6. Hi Yvonne!
    I’ve been noticing all of the gorgeous wildflowers as I drive around lately. In fact, an older lady I knew used to laugh at nurseries selling plants because long ago people just dug what they wanted out of the ditch or a field. Great post.

    Liberty

  7. I love to bring the outdoors in too. I’m always foraging for unusual stems or weeds when I’m out walking our Aussie – I think it sometimes gets on her nerves when I keep stopping to pick them lol! My faves are dried seedheads and grasses in winter – they are my must-have accessory!

  8. I love your blog! I have been using the greens from my Peony bushes for display. They seem to last a long time, and I really like the way they look.

  9. I am guilty of not foraging the stems and flowers growing in my yard. Dang, after seeing your pretty foraged arrangements I am kicking myself for not cutting stems from our ornamental Hawthorne tree when it was in full bloom. But, my dogwood is just about to bloom so guess what I’ll be doing soon? Thanks for the reminder to bring the beauty from outdoors in! You are one of my features this weekend at the Snickerdoodle Party. 🙂

  10. If the peonies had the smell of roses, I hope you kept the petals for pot pourri???? I love foraged arrangements–starting when my kids were 2 or 3 and brought me sticky fistfuls of dandelions with 2″ stems (that’s what shot glasses were for in my household!). Do you know the trick of putting Q Anne’s Lace in food coloring colored water to turn those tiny petals a pale pastel; so pretty!

  11. The gathered botanicals are beautiful, but I also love the white and natural chevron basket on the console table. Do you happen to recall the source? You have such a lovely home – it’s warm and happy looking but also calming and serene – my home goal!

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