Get Creative with Flowers that Dry Well [Decorating Ideas & Care Tips]

Get Inspired with Flowers that Dry Well

Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit Australia in 2020, I began looking into flowers that dry well because it was a challenge to get hold of fresh flowers. 

This of course meant that whatever flowers I had, or used in my arrangements, I tried to make those flowers last as long as possible. I then started observing how different flowers age and identifying flowers that dry well. And subsequently experimenting with these dried materials in my creative floral design work. 

Plus if these plant materials dry nicely, that also meant they would tend do well in wedding or event arrangements that have to be out of water source for a while, such as wedding bouquets or floral installations.

In Sogetsu ikebana, besides fresh flowers, dried flowers or floral materials such as branches are also used when making arrangements. While as floral designers we try to maintain the freshness of cut flowers as long as possible, I personally feel that if I could use flowers this way, it’s another way of extending the lifecycle of the cut flower.

Moreover dried floral materials can be re-used more than once in different ikebana flower arrangements which makes this a more sustainable approach.

So, the following is a list of flowers that dry nicely when given the right conditions.

Flowers that Dry Well

Australian native flowers  – Native flowers are well known to last well and dry beautifully. 

Native flowers that dry out well include:

King Protea
Leucospermum (Pincushion)
Kangaroo Paw
Paper Daisies
Rice Flower
Craspedia (Billy Button)
Bunny Tails

Flowers that dry well - bunny tails
Bunny Tails

Other Cut flowers that dry well and beautifully

Globe Amaranth (Bachelor Button)
Limonium (Caspia, Fairy Statice)
Baby’s Breath
Eryngium (Thistle, Sea Holly)

Other flowers known to dry beautifully but I haven’t tried drying these yet or haven’t found the way(s) to dry them well:


Foliage or greenery that dry well

In addition to flowers, I also found some greenery that dry out nicely as well. Examples of foliage that dry out well include:

Fan palm leaf
Leather fern
Strelitzia (Birds of Paradise) leaf

Floral Arrangements using Dried Flowers

Here I share with you 5 ways I’ve used dried flowers and dried materials in my arrangements or floral design work:

  1. With preserved flowers
  2. With fresh flowers
  3. Dried branches with fresh flowers or plants
  4. As framed art or home decor art
  5. Floral artistic display

Flower Arrangement with Dried and Preserved Flowers

Arrangement with Dried and Preserved Flowers
Dried and Preserved Flower Arrangement

I’m not generally a huge fan of artificially dyed imported flowers. When I do, I use them sparingly and only with the intention to inject colour into my arrangements. (What happens with naturally dried flowers is that the colour of the flowers will dull somewhat.)

This arrangement was created for a client as a Mother’s Day gift. The client brief here was to make a colourful arrangement for her mother.

This ikebana inspired arrangement included a mix of naturally dried florals as well as imported dried and preserved flowers.

(There are slight differences between dried and preserved flowers, particularly as a result of the process they have undergone to reach the dried or preserved state. If taken care properly, preserved flowers can last longer than dried flowers, that is up to 30-plus years!)

Arrangement using a mix of Dried and Fresh Flowers

Ikebana with fresh and dried flowers
Dahlia and flax leaf used with dried fern
Ikebana with Fresh and Dried Florals
Dahlia and ruscus with spray-painted dried leaf

To be environmentally friendly as much as possible, I try and re-use any material I spray-paint more than once. 

For instance I used the spray-painted monstera leaf in the above arrangement in another ikebana freestyle arrangement shown below.

PRO TIP: When using dried and fresh materials together in an arrangement, remember to keep the stems of dried materials dry to prevent them from going mush.

Flowers that dry nicely
Fresh florals with dried flowers such as billy buttons and limonium

Dried branches with Fresh Flowers or Plants

Driftwood Arrangement with air plants
Driftwood arrangement with dried king protea and air plants
ikebana calming hobby
Ikebana inspired arrangement with dried succulent branches and fresh florals

Look for interesting forms in plant materials that can be dried so you can incorporate them in your home decor. 

Dried flowers as framed artwork

Dried Flowers Framed
Dried Flowers including delphinium and bachelor buttons as framed art

Placing florals at different depths or heights will add interest to your floral art.

Home decor with dried flowers

Dried Flowers Artistic Display

This artistic piece pictured below makes a great retail store window display.

Creative Arrangement Dried Flowers
Artistic Display of Dried Native Flowers and Foliage

Another popular way of artistically displaying dried flowers is as wall hangings.

Dried Flower Wall Hanging Ideas
Dried Flower Wall Hanging Ideas


4 pro tips on caring for dried flowers:

  • Keep dried flowers out of direct sun. (Colours will fade more quickly if you keep them in the sun.)
  • Keep them dry. 
  • Place your dried flower arrangement in a dry room with good airflow. For example avoid rooms with high humidity like bathrooms or the kitchen.
  • Use a hair dryer (gentle cold air setting) to remove dust.

I hope you found some inspiration from the type of floral work you can create with flowers that dry well. 

Have you used dried flowers in other ways? If so, please share in the comments below. 

If you like these creative dried flower ideas, pin this post and save it for later.

Get Inspired with Flowers that Dry Well
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Difference between a Florist and Floral Designer


nice to meet you!

As a qualified floral designer specialising in Japanese ikebana and modern elegant styles, I offer custom arrangements and classes for individuals looking to decorate their wedding, event and space with flowers.

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