Sure, we all know an anthophile (a plant and flower fanatic) or two. But for those of us with not-so-green thumbs, have you noticed the emerging dried plant craze? I’ve seen dried plants everywhere on Instagram lately and they’re also cropping up at interior retailers like West Elm, Pottery Barn, and Terrain. Online florists like TheSill.com have entire collections of dried stems and bouquets. Even Ikea is on board, bringing us the dried goods with all-upper-case names like EFTERSINNA, ENHÄLLIG, and TORKA. So I wanted to take a closer look at the ways people are using dried blooms.

Chic ways to display dried florals

You’ll notice when looking at these modern bouquets that their muted natural colors align well with the neutral schemes that have been so popular lately. Dried bouquets look great in glass vases that show off their stems or earthy ceramic vases that can blend with surroundings or enhance the space with a coordinating color pop.

Dried florals can be used to make a statement about long-lasting things. It’s more than a trend; it’s a nod toward sustainability. It’s boho, it’s earth-friendly, and it’s super low maintenance.

The best flowers to buy and dry

You can purchase a pre-dried bouquet, or you can make your own. Some of the most popular plants and flowers for drying include:

  • anemone,
  • anthurium,
  • calla lilies,
  • craspedia,
  • eucalyptus,
  • glixia larkspur,
  • lavender,
  • pampas grass
  • ranunculus, and
  • strawflowers.

So check those out as a starting point. See what might work with your existing decor.

Moss boxes and dried ferns alternatives

Beyond the flowers listed above, you might like to check out the huge variety of dried ferns and dried moss available today. Similar to “living walls,” collections of moss can be naturally preserved and arranged in a frame to create a preserved moss box. Lovely preserved “moss balls” can be displayed in a bowl, a bell jar, or hung from a ribbon.

Preserved ferns often appear in their natural green state. However, they can be dyed soothing colors like white, pink, yellow, or orange.

Benefits of dried flowers and plants

Dried flowers and plants are truly low-key. They require almost no maintenance — no watering or feeding, only perhaps the occasional dusting outdoors. These long-lasting dried arrangements and bouquets can be enjoyed for months or years.

Also, you can really get creative with the high variety of dried options available. You’ll see everything from grasses to grains, flowers, leafy greens, branches, and twigs. Creating something sculptural with dried flowers really has a dramatic effect in the right spot.

Finally, one thing I really love about dried natural bouquets is that they are truly independent of location or environment. Unlike their lively green counterparts, dried arrangements can go literally anywhere, regardless of light or temperature. It makes them a great touch for neglected corners or windowless interior rooms.

Drawbacks of dried flowers and plants

The main drawback I can see is that these plants can get a bit dusty over time. Also, they can become brittle once dried and may crumble a bit over time. You have to be careful, as they can be a bit delicate if you move them or brush up against them.

Also, I think that you have to have a discerning eye toward how to place these in your home, as I feel they can elevate a space if they have a dramatic or warming effect. On the other hand, dried plants can detract from a room if they don’t fit in — it will only add the feeling of clutter.

 

To preserve or not to preserve?

If you’re not a total plant daddy but you do want the warmth of natural elements in your home, consider dried plants. And if you do love being a plant parent already, a few purposefully dried plants can bring an element of harmony to your lush, interior jungle.

On the whole, I think it’s fun to experiment with newer varieties of dried flowers. Just avoid anything that creates a feeling of stuffiness or clutter. Look to create arrangements that have an element of surprise and create visual interest.