Learn how to arrange tulips to create a beautiful centerpiece for your home or party.

Tulips are beautiful not only for their simplicity, but for their ease to arrange. I have leaned into them throughout the years, incorporating them into weddings and events I designed for clients, photo shoots for magazines and into our own home.

I created a step by step tutorial to teach you how to create a tulip arrangement, effortlessly. I’m sharing all of my tips where to purchase them, how to select the best stems, the best vases to use and so much more!

A cream kitchen wit ha tulip arrangement in a glass vase, resting on an ivory and brass French range.
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Tulips are abundant in spring making them easily accessible and less expensive! I take advantage by incorporating them into our home, making it feel fresh and sometimes, colorful.

Why You’ll Love Tulips

Foolproof – To create a beautiful tulip arrangement, you put tulips in a vase and they will go where they want to.

No Special Vase Required – You don’t need a special tulip vase, you just need a simple vessel to showcase their simplicity!

They Change Daily – Cut tulips move and grow with the light in your home. They are at their very best when you allow them to drape and curve on a whim.

A close up of a white tulip arrangement as part of a tutorial for how to arrange tulips.

Where to Buy Tulips

Flower Shop – I love supporting local! Our neighborhood flower shop often features tulip bundles on special during the early spring months.

Online – In the source guide towards the end of this post, you’ll find fresh tulips, vases and tools that you can order right to your doorstep!

Grocery Store – Between January and April, our local grocers often feature inexpensive bundles of tulips in an incredible variety of colors.

White tulip arrangement in a vase on a white background.

Trader Joe’s Flowers

Trader Joe’s is one of my favorite sources to find flowers year round.

Tips for Purchasing Tulips

  • Look for tulips blooms that are still tight. This ensures they are fresh and they do not open too much before they are arranged.
  • Remove yellowed leaves and leaves that will fall below the water line for longevity and appearance.
A white tulip arrangement on a marble island countertop.

How to Create a Tulip Arrangement

  1. Choose the freshest tulips you can find. Blooms should be mostly closed and the edges of their blossoms should be opaque. Avoid thin or transparent blooms. Leaves should be green (not yellow) and free of mold or deterioration.
  2. Rinse tulip stems with cold water to remove dirt trapped in leaves.
  3. Trim the stems 1″ or more using sharp shears. (Note: I tend to leave 6-8″ above the vase for tulip only arrangements)  Remember, you can always go shorter, but never longer.
  4. Remove any excess leaves or leaves that fall below the lip of the vase.
  5. Fill vase with cool water. Place tulips in the vase and watch them bloom.

Tip

Let them work their magic. Don’t fuss over them. Over the course of the next day, they will do the work for you.

A cream kitchen wit ha tulip arrangement in a glass vase, resting on an ivory and brass French range.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you keep tulips from drooping?

Using sharp shears or a knife to avoid crushing the stem, cut one inch off the stem, remove any excess leaves and replace with water with cool, fresh water. Change the water each day, and keep them away from HVAC vents to avoid blasting air.

Why do tulips droop?

Their long stems are soft and weak, therefore can’t support the heavy bud. They also tend to move towards the light.
Embrace this as it’s what makes tulips prettier each day! If your tulip arrangement feels a bit stiff, don’t worry, they’ll start to relax in just a few hours!

Do you remove the leaves from tulips?

Remove any leaves that will be below the water line, as these can create bacteria in the water and shorten the life of your tulips.

A white tulip arrangement on a marble island countertop.

Tip

I recommend using a cylinder vase or a a vase that has a wider opening. The allows space for their beautiful foliage to gracefully open, while deep enough to support the weight of the stems.

A cream kitchen wit ha tulip arrangement in a glass vase, resting on an ivory and brass French range.

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15 Comments

  1. Use 4-7 pennies. Works every time!

    IF you keep buying fresh tulips, after about 3 soakings in tulips you will need to replace these pennies and begin with another group of pennies. Don’t know why or how. Don’t ask questions.
    Just enjoy!!!!!!!!

    Continue to change the water after a few days (using original pennies STILL) and shorten your stems. ENJOY!

    PS do not re use pennies in tulips, spend them on more tulips.