My Creative Workbook

Christine de Beer - effortless floral craftsman

Test tube on a stick

If you want to include a single floret (such as an orchid) snipped from a stem or want to bundle a few weaker stems (such as lily of the valley) into an arrangement or hand tie its often better to include them in their own water source and easier to design with if you can attach a longer "stem".

I also use this technique when I do spring bouquets and want to include one or two daffodils to the arrangement. Daffodils are not very neighbour friendly and release a latex sap into water that seriously reduces the vase life of all other flowers.
If your bouquet is a gift remember to tell the recipient about the test tubes so that he can top up the water in a few days time. Orchids are not heavy drinkers and will stay fresh for a long time in a test tube.

This is also a great substitute for floral foam in lightweight designs. Just glue the new stems to a structure and design.


Test tube on a stick

Wire a stick to a test tube at two places for stability and design as you would any other stem. If you use a firm but flexible stick (I used a willow twig) twist it as you would the rest of the bouquet stems to spiral bind or cut it short to insert into floral foam or structure.


Glue a reed to a test tube.

For an inexpensive and fast solution when you need quite a few test tubes on sticks glue reeds to the test tubes with hot glue.

A bunch of test tubes on sticks.

A bunch of test tubes on sticks.

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4 January 2011 Drinking straw "test tubes"

When you need to keep a tiny stem hydrated this is just what you need.

10 July 2012 Stabilizing sticks for dried or fresh flowers

Create a full design without the weight by stabilizing the flowers with glued sticks. This is a great alternative to floral foam.

Related Designs

21 April 2011 Happy Easter!

Spring "Ice cream" posy with a Banana Leaf "cone"

20 May 2011 Boat Orchids

These dramatic sprays of orchids have thick, waxy flowers with five pointed sepals and petals (of approximately the same dimension) on each bloom and will last 2-4 weeks as cut...

10 July 2012 Sticktoitness

Glue a heart shaped design made from bark and wood.

30 January 2013 It's High Time for Tea: from craft to art, taking a delicious floral journey with wire techniques

This was my last two designs for my It's High Time for Tea Floral Craft and Art Demonstration at The Capilano Flower Arranging Club meeting

31 October 2018 Scary stuff!

My Halloween design... with some scary stuff hidden if you can read between the leaves!

6 November 2019 Dance lessons from the Autumn leaves

A fun and easy contemporary floral design to display foraged autumn leaves and just a touch of flowers that can easily be replaced.