Do you ever see an arrangement and think, “How the heck did they get those flowers to stay like that?”
More often than not, there are floral mechanics in the background working their magic. Maybe it’s Oasis (floral foam) keeping everything together, maybe it’s a floral tape grid holding stems up, or maybe it’s a floral frog helping blooms defy gravity.
The name for these little beauties is a little odd but they are the true workhorses of floral mechanics. If you’ve never used one, are intimidated to try, or are still thinking “floral frogs…did she just make that up?”then this is the post for you. Let’s start at the beginning…
What is a floral frog?
Used for flower arranging, floral frogs are meant to sit in the bottom of vases or bowls. They are used in ikebana arranging (read more about our venture into ikebana here), and for unusual containers that need a little extra support. Essentially, they will hold even the trickiest flower arrangements firmly in place.
What do floral frogs look like?
Flower frogs come in hundreds of different shapes and sizes and don’t resemble actual frogs at all (except the punny #7 below).
…essentially, there is no “right” kind of floral frog. They can be made of lead, pottery, glass, or bronze and their shapes are almost always different.
How do they work?
Just like they all look different, they all work differently, too. They act as support for the flower stems that are placed inside the holes or on the pins. Depending on the model you choose, there will either be sharp pins or small grids. If you have the pins, you will be pushing the stems onto the pins to hold them in place. If you have the grid, you will rest the stems against the grid to help them stay put.
Where can I buy them?
You can buy new floral frogs at flower shops and garden stores. But, if you have a sharp eye and frequent flea markets, garage sales, antique stores or yard sales, you may come across vintage frogs. Not only do they have more history when they come from these places, but they also tend to be significantly less expensive (think $1-2 per frog).
But, but…which kind is the best?
Your best bet is to keep a bunch of different kinds of frogs around so you always have the perfect one for the kind of arrangement you want to make.
Here are a few examples of the frogs that we use at YouDoFlowers:
The spiky kinds are perfect for thin, flimsy stems (think tulips or ranunculus).
The ones with holes are suited to the thicker stems of roses and lilies.
Hairpin frogs with wire loops are best for stiff stems and branches.
And, as you know by now, it wouldn’t be a YouDo Flowers post without a sample arrangement. Mom stepped in to make a petite arrangement with a similarly petite floral frog:
Even just in the frog, this sweet little arrangement looks great, but if you wanted to hide the mechanics, all you have to do is pop the frog into a teacup or a small vase!
Do you have a favorite floral frog (say that 5x fast!) that you use all the time? Are you going to try using a frog for your next arrangement? Let us know how your adventures into floral mechanics go.