Make Your Own DIY Garden Bouquet

Make Your Own DIY Garden Bouquet

By Kellie Maloney

In 2024, Australians are set to spend almost half a billion dollars on Valentine’s Day gifts, with 39% of people putting their budget towards flowers. Although an expertly designed bouquet can be a romantic gesture, why not channel your inner child and handpick a garden bouquet instead? Save your dollars and pour some love into an arrangement from your very own backyard.

Here to guide you on your DIY journey is Chris Saban, the blossom-loving head florist at Merchant & Green in Redfern. Having dedicated more than 15 years of his life to flowers, Chris understands what it takes to make a heartfelt bouquet.

Chris Saban from Merchant & Green

The secret? You don’t need a floristry certificate to make a sweet and thoughtful flower arrangement for your person. It’s all about experimenting and taking the time out to create for the ones you love most.

Guide to making your DIY garden bouquet

1. Selecting your flowers

Chris’ tip #1:

When picking fresh flowers from your garden or the markets, always choose blooms that are not fully open. It will give the bouquet more vase life.

Pick flowers that have a special meaning to your partner and use a larger flower such as a rose or a hydrangea to be the focal point of your bouquet.

If you’re unsure of which flowers look good together, check out our colour wheel in the image gallery. Colours that are next to each other, like red and orange or purple and blue, will complement each other. While colour opposites like orange and blue or purple and yellow will provide contrast and give your bouquet a bolder look. 

colour wheel

Not quite ready to commit? Take a few snaps and look at the photos side by side or visit Instagram or Pinterest for inspiration. This is especially helpful if you have a big backyard and your dahlias are nowhere near your bottlebrush!

Once you have your flowers sorted, gather your greenery. You’ll want to use foliage to spruce up your bouquet and give it a more natural look. Eucalyptus, honey bracelet and fern leaves are some common and popular choices. 

2. How to cut your flowers

Chris’ tip #2:

You need to handle the flowers gently and always cut the stems on a diagonal angle to increase the surface contact with water in the vase. That way the flowers can drink more. 

It’s time to make the cut! When doing so, keep in mind the desired size of your bouquet and the depth of your vase.

Use a pair of pruning shears or sharp scissors and make sure to cut your flowers and foliage individually at the stem. 

Next, pick the leaves off the stem and keep them in fresh, room-temperature water while you’re putting together the perfect arrangement.

3. Arranging your flowers

pink roses resting on table

Chris’ tip #3:

There are many things to consider with floral decoration, choosing colours that have harmony when placed together means the bouquet will look more pleasing to the eye.

When creating a garden bouquet, keep things simple. Use the freshest ingredients possible, choose a main flower and also a smaller flower to give texture.

Now for the fun part – arranging your flowers! 

It might help to lay out your flowers and foliage on a flat surface so you can see how they look when arranged differently. Then, gather them one at a time and structure your bouquet. 

Use some string or ribbon to keep your bouquet in place and voilà – the perfect DIY gift for your loved one!

4. How to keep your bouquet fresher for longer

close up of sunflower

Chris’ tip #4:

Change the water in your vase every couple of days for best results.

You can also trim the bottom of your stems (again at a diagonal angle) every few days so they can retain more moisture. 

Chris’ tip #5:

Have fun!

To discover the joy of working with flowers, join Chris and his team for a floristry workshop at Merchant and Green in Redfern, Sydney here.


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