Tropical flowers are big, bright and dramatic, like birds of paradise and ginger flowers or tiny and delicate like vanda orchids and crocosmia. While they aren't easy to grow in home gardens and can be a bit pricey at the florist, only a few are needed to make a statement. Combine the flowers with tropical greenery and fruits.
Proteas come in various shapes and colors. The flower is round and up to 4 inches in diameter, with many long, thin petals. Colors include orange, red and pink. The king protea is larger, up to 6 inches, and has an oblong shape rather than round. Depending on the size of the bubble vase, use a bouquet of either three or five proteas. Surround them with aspidistra leaves, which are 12 inches long, strap-shaped and dark green. Fold the aspidistra leaves over and tuck both ends into the vase to form a frame around the proteas.
Fill a fresh coconut with smaller leaved greenery and tuck in one large anthurium which has a bright red, oval, flat flower. The coconut has a tendency to roll so stabilize it on a round flat glass dish with floral clay. Leave the glass dish plain or fill it with shredded coconut. Add to the coconut fragrance with coconut-scented candles held in fresh coconuts.
Big and Bold
Fill a tall vase with two 3-foot stems of hanging heliconia. The flowers hang down on opposite sides of the stem and resemble lobster claws. Like lobster claws, the flowers are red, or a blush pink. In the center of the vase place three birds of paradise. The 6-inch-long flowers resemble the head of an exotic bird with petals in orange, red and purple. Finish the simple arrangement with a few palm fronds and a ruffle of ferns around the neck of the vase.
Pineapples say tropical. Use a hollowed-out pineapple as the vase. Cut a thin slice off the bottom to steady the vase. Set it on a clear glass plate so juice doesn't run on your table top. Fill the pineapple with stems of vanda orchids and bear grass. Set a few cut vanda orchids on the plate.
This airy arrangement uses only three cattleya orchids, but they make an impact because they seem to be floating in air. Use a round vase to echo the round shape of the orchid petals. The vase needs to be large enough for two wine glasses, one considerably taller than the other to fit inside. Fill the bottom of the vase with 1 inch of water. Place one orchid in the water. Place two wine glasses in the vase, and fill each with 1 inch of water. Place an orchid in each of the wine glasses.