9 Long-Lasting Florals That Aren't Silk
Nothing fills your home with colorful charm like a gorgeous bouquet of fresh-cut flowers. Unfortunately, refilling vases with fresh blooms every week can add up quickly, tearing a sunflower-sized hole in your decorating budget. No worries! There are plenty of inexpensive, low-maintenance ways to integrate beautiful, long-lasting florals into your decor without ever stepping foot in the oh-so-scary fake flower aisle.
Best Dried Varieties
Dried or preserved flowers are as close to the real thing as you can get and last about 12 times longer than their fresh counterparts. However, not every flower looks good when dried, and it's important to follow proper drying techniques to avoid moldy or brown-tinted blooms. Hydrangea, statice, yarrow, baby's breath, lavender and blue thistle are great choices, as they maintain their natural shape and bright color when dried and will last for months or even years in a clean, non-humid environment.
Learn How: Cutting and Drying Flowers
If you're looking to replicate Joanna Gaines' effortless Fixer Upper farmhouse aesthetic, grab a few bunches of cotton stems next time you head to the farmer's market. They're inexpensive, make a gorgeous statement and are 100 percent natural. Win-win-win.
Going on vacation? No need to hire a plant sitter for these hardy blooms. Succulents are super trendy, low-maintenance plants that can survive year round in virtually all conditions. Plus, a succulent plant often costs less than a single silk flower stem! Arrange in sandy soil and place next to a bright, sunny window for best results.
What if I told you that wreaths look just as great indoors as they do out? Work one of these chic floral decorations into your gallery wall, lay them flat on a table for a unique centerpiece or prop on a shelf, mantel or plate rail. Make your own from long-lasting materials such as dried flowers, succulents or paper blooms and switch out seasonally as desired.
Make This: DIY Foliage and Berry Wreath
Sticks and Stems
Decorative branches are about as low-maintenance as it gets. Just drop them in a pretty vase, arrange and you're done. That being said, not just any old stick will do. Choose ornamental types such as birch, pussy willow, curly willow or lichen-covered varieties for a polished look.
Ok, paper flowers are fake flowers, too. But if your home decor skews kitschy, bright DIY paper blooms are a fun and youthful long-term option and a unique alternative to silk or plastic florals. I'll brb — gotta grab my glue gun.
How to Make Paper Flowers 03:11
Long-Lasting House Plants
From indoor trees to shade-loving indoor plants, the options are endless when it comes to low-maintenance house plants. No green thumb required (seriously!).
Do Your Homework: Caring for Houseplants and Indoor Plants
Gardening Tips: Houseplants 02:47
Make a big statement by transforming your favorite blooms into unique, large-scale home decor. Upside-down flower pots, sculptured planters and oversized macro flower prints are just a few of the stunning and creative ways you can display florals year round in a big way.
At the end of the day, nothing can replace the look, feel and smell of fresh-cut flowers. Fortunately, there are a variety of blooms that will last two weeks or more when properly maintained. Rich-scented coffee berry, eucalyptus, orchids, chrysanthemums and zinnias are among the most popular long-lasting varieties and look great when displayed in large bunches. For maximum life span, arrange loosely in a clean vase, cut stems at an angle and replace water every few days.