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Different Shapes of Flowers

By Callie Barber ; Updated September 21, 2017
Poppies vary in flower form.
Poppy image by agladysh from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Flower shapes create a distinct design to each bloom for a one-of-a-kind display in the garden. Ranging from bell, funnel and trumpet to bowl, spherical and saucer shapes, oftentimes flowers are categorized within one or more categories. For example, some flowers start off as one shape and eventually turn into another. Flowers like poppies range in a wide variety of shapes including saucer, cup or bowl while grape hyacinth grows in tubular, bell or spherical shapes.


Foxglove has a bell-shaped bloom.
foxglove image by david purday from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Bell-shaped, also called campanulate, flowers have a wide tube and flared petal tips or lobes that vary in length. Examples of bell-shaped flowers are campanula, bluebell, Chinese lantern, foxglove, grape hyacinth and honeysuckle.


Morning glories have a funnel-shaped bloom.
morning glory image by ATLANTISMEDIA from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Funnel-shaped flowers have a narrow base and gradually widen in a flared or open shape. Examples of funnel-shaped flowers are morning glory, Peruvian lily, primrose, forget-me-nots, freesia, gardenia, hibiscus, hollyhock and mallow.


A trumpet-shaped daffodil in bloom.
daffodil image by Alison Bowden from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Trumpet-shaped flowers start off as a narrow tube and gradually widen into a flared shape, creating turned-back petals that appear to be wind-blown or outward-facing. Examples of trumpet-shaped flowers are daffodil, petunia, baby’s breath, gentiana and nerine.


A bowl-shaped buttercup in bloom.
a spring yellow buttercup image by Maria Brzostowska from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Bowl-shaped blooms have a symmetrical deep dish shape that is similar to a cup shape but deeper. They have straight sides or a slight flare to the tips of the petals. Examples of bowl-shaped flowers are buttercup, cherry blossoms, lily, passion flower, peony, poppy, tulip, water lily and celandine.


Hellebore blooms are saucer-shaped.
hellebore image by Alison Bowden from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Saucer-shaped flowers have a nearly flat form with petals tips that turn slightly upward. Examples of saucer-shaped flowers are geranium, hellebore, windflower, poppy, peony, magnolia and camellia.


Primrose blooms are tubular-shaped.
primrose image by Vaida from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Tubular-shaped flowers have a thin, long tube that is straight-sided to form their connected or united petals. They often separate at the mouth of the flower into a flared shape. Examples of tubular-shaped flowers are gardenia, heliotrope, hyacinth, lilac, snapdragon, primrose and rhododendron.


Globe thistle blooms in a spherical shape.
Globe Thistle - Echinops image by Kiraly Zoltan from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

Spherical flowers form an almost perfect, symmetrical sphere that is made up of one single flower. Examples of spherical-shaped flowers are mimosa, globe thistle, peony, cornflower and viburnum.


About the Author


Callie Barber has been writing professionally since 2002. Barber's love for design and writing inspired her to create Design Your Revolution, a blog that shares creative and affordable ways to decorate indoor and outdoor living environments. Her articles have appeared on Travels.com and GardenGuides.com. Barber holds a Bachelors of Arts in international studies from the University of North Carolina.