Floral Arrangements with Roses

Floral arrangements using roses by Horticulturists Mandi Stade and Elizabeth Wesley-Martin 

large arrangement

Tips to keep in mind when working with Roses

  • Remove all foliage below water line to prevent rotten leaves from contaminating the water
  • Cut stems one at a time, at a 45 degree angle. This allows for greater surface area and increase of water uptake.
  • Keep cut roses in a cool spot, out of direct sunlight, heat, drafts, and away from fruit. The gases which fruit emits can cause flowers to become spent quicker
  • Cut roses do best with floral food. You can make your own with sugar and vinegar mixed with water
  • Replace vase water every 2-3 days to prevent bacterial buildup, recut stems every 2-3 days also to prevent the stem from closing off and to allow the water uptake to keep going





Rose Wreath/Crown


  • Cut roses / leaves
  • Wire
  • Floral tape


  • Create wreath form out of wire
  • Wrap wire form with floral tape
  • Cut individual flowers and leaves, keeping at least 1”-2”stem
  • Attach material: wrap floral tape around both the wire form, flowers and leaves
  • Continue around the entire wire form working in the same direction with flowers, leaves and tape


Rose bowl with cut roses and grasses

  • Line rose bowl with greens (grasses, hostas, palms)
  • Fill bowl with water
  • Cut roses / trim all leaves off of rose stems
  • Arrange in a compact form for a modern look

**Combine wreath and bowl arrangements for another centerpiece idea

Wall hanging

Hanging Roses


  • Cut roses
  • Piece of wood, material to hang wire from
  • Wire


  • Cut multiple pieces of wire (at least 18”)
  • Using an end of the wire, pierce the back side of each rose where the stem meets the rose bud
  • Continue this process with preferred amount of roses and cut wire
  • Make sure to keep at least 3” of left over wire to wrap around the wood / hanging material

narrow vase

White Birch Bark Flower Holder arrangement with Roses, Iris leaves, and Ninebark leaves

  • This arrangement is comprised of two birch bark slabs attached together, with 5 small water tubes inserted between the slabs.
  • Fill tubes with water approximately 2/3 full
  • Cut iris leaves to desired length. The tallest iris leaves should be 1 ½ times the height + the diameter of the container. Insert leaves into tubes.
  • Select roses to use, determine the best heights for each rose stem. You’ll want to stagger the lengths of the roses to add dimension to the arrangement. Remove all rose foliage that would fall below the water line. Remove thorns from stems so that they do not interfere with the insertion of other stems into the water tube.
  • Add in additional foliage around the mouth of each water tube to help hide the mouth of the tube. Ninebark foliage was used, but use whatever foliage you have at home.

large arrangement

Bouquet Arrangement in Vase

  • Select the style of vase that you wish to use. A cylindrical vase with a 7 ½” height and 5” opening was used for this arrangement
  • Select the Roses, filler materials, and greenery that you wish to use in the bouquet. Materials used in this arrangement include: pink & yellow Roses, purple Salvia, pink Spirea, Variegated Solomon’s Seal, purple Baptisia, green Hydrangea, and assorted Ferns
  • Fill vase ¾ full with water and floral food. Follow floral food directions on package for best results.
  • Shorten Fern branches to desired length, cut branches on a 45-degree angle, remove any foliage that would be below the water line. Place Fern stems around the entire mouth of the vase, forming a circle of foliage
  • Cut Rose stems on a 45-degree angle, place them in vase. Make sure to stagger the heights of the roses. Next, place in your selection of filler materials around Roses, to fill in bouquet. Lastly, gather your tall upright stalks to place in the center of the vase arrangement to add some height and dimension to the arrangement. Purple Salvia and Baptisia were used in this arrangement, but you can use whatever upright stalks you have on hand at home—tall grasses would also look great. The lengths of your upright branches should be measured to be at least 1 ½ times the height, plus the diameter of your vase.

Fern bowl

Float Arrangement in 8” Rose Bowl

  • Gather 3 rose flowers to use. Rose blooms in assorted sizes(based on how open each flower is)  provides a nice contrast.
  • Gather 3 branches of whatever greenery you wish to submerge and encircle around the inside of the vase. Three Fern fronds were used in this arrangement.
  • Fill rose bowl ¾ full of water
  • Cut stems off Ferns, arrange stems underwater around the inside perimeter of the lower portion of the vase.
  • Cut Rose stems short, leaving only about one inch of stem on the Rose. Place Roses on top of water surface to float

bud vase

Bud Vase Arrangement

  • Hot pink Roses, Switch Grass, and Variegated Japanese Forest Grass were used in this arrangement, but you can use any greens, filler, and flowers that you have on hand
  • Cut three Japanese Forest Grass stems at varying heights and place them all on one side in vase
  • Cut and place three stems of switch grass in vase next to Japanese Forest Grass stems, so that all grasses are arranged going out of the vase in the same direction.
  • Place 1 or 3 roses in the vase (at varying heights if you use 3)

big leaf

Rectangular Vase Arrangement

  • This floral arrangement is comprised of pink Roses, pink and white striped Roses, and spotted Caladium leaves
  • Cut most of the stems off of the Caladium leaves so that there is only a ½ inch or so of stem, place one leaf along one side of the inside of the vase, front side facing the outside of the vase. Then place the second leaf on the other side of the inside of the vase. Caladiums will form a ‘wall’ inside the vase. If you have trouble with the Caladiums staying in place, you can use a narrow rectangular pin frog in the bottom of the vase. Just simply attach the Caladium stems to the pin frog.  Helpful tip: To avoid dropping the pin frog inside the vase and risking the vase breaking, I push a bamboo stake or branch stem into the flower frog, lower the frog into the bottom of the vase, and either wiggle the stem free from the frog, or use another stem to push down on the frog and release the other stem.
  • Fill vase ¾ full with floral food water
  • Cut Rose stems at 45-degree angle, arrange Roses in vase

square vase2

Floating Arrangement in a Square Vase

  • Arrangement contains one Rose, white Daisies, Rabbits Foot Fern frond, and clear gems
  • Place gems in bottom of vase, forming a thin layer
  • Fill vase 2/3 full with water
  • Shorten Fern frond so that ¾ of the foliage is laying in the vase and water, and ¼ of the frond is hanging over the edge of the vase
  • Cut a good portion of the rose stem off, so that there is just about a half inch of stem remaining. Float the Rose flower on the water surface above the Fern frond.
  • Cut stems off of the small Daisies (or whichever small flowers you use) and float at least three blooms around the Rose flower


Submerged Rose in Cylinder Vase

  • Select a vase to use. Be sure to choose a vase which provides enough room for the flower to be fully submerged
  • Select a weighted pin frog that will fit inside the bottom of the vase, preferably a metal frog
  • Insert a bamboo stake or stick into the pin frog, lift and gently lower pin frog into the bottom of the vase. Use another stake or stick to press into the pin frog while you lift and free the other stake loose from the frog
  • Gather gems to submerge into the bottom of the vase to cover the pin frog, leaving one bare spot in the center for the Rose stem to be inserted
  • Shorten Rose stem so that the bloom sits at about ½-2/3 up inside the vase. Insert rose stem firmly into pin frog
  • Add more gems to hide pin frog
  • Slowly pour water into vase and fill water up through the entire vase, submerging the Rose

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