Take It Tropical

Exotic blooms inspire FLOWER magazine’s Jessica Cohen to create a vibrant tropical arrangement


“To me, the colorful tropical flowers that bloom in warmer climates symbolize sunny days, sandy beaches, and island vibes.”—Jessica Cohen

For the vase, Cohen chose a blue-green glass vessel reminiscent of sea glass and ocean views. Then for the flowers, she chose bold, exotic blooms such as protea, pincushions, and beehive ginger. Finally, for a playful touch, she added gloriosa lilies and craspedia, a sphere-shaped flower covered in tiny yellow flowers. The vibrant result makes a perfect centerpiece for a tropical-themed party or a “just because” gift to brighten someone’s day.

Materials for Jessica Cohen's Tropical Flower Arrangement Video


  • Beehive ginger
  • Orange protea pincushion
  • Pink protea
  • Anthurium
  • Gloriosa lily
  • Craspedia
  • Blue star fern
  • Calathea
  • Clippers
  • Scissors
  • Waterproof floral tape

Finished product from Jessica Cohen's Tropical Flower Arrangement Video


1 | Create a tape grid across the top of your vase using waterproof floral tape.

2 | Begin designing your tropical arrangement by creating a base of mixed tropical foliage. (In this video, Cohen begins with blue star fern.)

3 | Continue to build the base by adding calathea leaves.

4 | Once you have a nice base and shape, insert the beehive ginger. Make sure to cut the stems at an angle to allow maximum water absorption. Place the blooms in a triangular formation.

5 | Next, insert the orange protea pincushions just below the beehive ginger.

6 | Add color and a new texture with the pink protea.

7 | Introduce more pink with the anthurium. Vary the height of the stems for a staggered look, with some blooms near the top, some near the bottom, and some in between.

8 | Insert the hot pink gloriosa lilies. Each stem has several blooms, which helps fill any holes.

9 | For the final touch, use the yellow craspedia to bridge the color palette of the arrangement. Keep the stems long so that the spherical heads look like they are floating in the arrangement.

10 | Don’t forget to add water to the vase as the last step!

Produced by Jessica Cohen | Location provided by AmericasMart | Vase provided by Accent Décor | Flowers provided by Cut Flower Wholesale

More Tips and Ideas for Tropical Arrangements