The Most Important DIY Flower Question – How Many Flowers Do I Need?

Posted By on Jun 5, 2013 | 15 comments

Here at Blooms By The Box, one of the most frequently asked and most important questions for a DIY’er is “How many flowers do I need to order?“. Why so important? Obviously you don’t want to run out of flowers for your project, but who really wants to order too much and waste money? So much of flower arranging is approximation, but Blooms By The Box has created these guidelines and a flower quantity chart to help you achieve flower perfection!

Let’s start off with the biggest flowers. Remember: bigger flowers take up more space, so you can buy less. This is often a great way to create full-looking arrangements and save money.

Hydrangea was recently featured in a post on Weddingbells. Blooms By The Box is absolutely in love with this trend! The article also features pictures of peony and rose bouquets, which we will discuss in a moment. Not only are these “monobotanical” bouquets gorgeous, they work out perfectly for our DIY brides! Just look at this easy yet elegant blue hydrangea bouquet from Sugar and Art, perfectly captured by photographer Katie Stoops.

hydrangea bouquet kstoops

So how much do you need for a hydrangea bouquet or arrangement? For a small arrangement, use 2-3 stems. Medium (like the one pictured), up the dosage to 4-5 stems. For a large bouquet, 6-8 stems is your answer.

Another extremely popular flower with a large bloom is the peony. Peonies are exceptionally great in DIY arrangements because they look wonderful in every stage of growth, from bud to bloom.  Be Chic just featured 5 different bouquets with peonies on their “Top 10 Summertime Bridal Bouquets of 2013”, 3 of which were made with only peonies. 5 out of 10 is pretty impressive for one flower! Notice that these delightfully fluffy peonies, photographed by One Love Photography, range from partially to fully opened.


A large peony bridal bouquet like this one would require 10-12 peonies. Bridesmaids could carry medium bouquets of 6-8 stems, and you might want to give your flower girl a small bouquet of 3-4 stems. These quantities can always be adjusted for your individual preferences. Don’t forget the greens!

Are peonies going to be out of season during your wedding, or too expensive for your budget? Have no fear – we have the perfect substitution – garden roses! They have the same round bloom with slightly fluffy petals. Even when peonies are in season (November thru July), garden roses convey a romantic, sophisticated vibe. They also come in quite a few more colors.


These garden roses, featured on Style Me Pretty and photographed by Carla Ten Eyck Photography are a bright and summery choice for any bridal bouquet. To make a large bouquet like this with only garden roses, use 10-12 garden roses. 8 or 9 blooms would make a medium bouquet, and 3-4 garden roses would make a small bouquet.

Looking for more help with your arrangements? Click on the picture below to check out our complete quantity chart on!

Flower Quantity Chart

Have more great ideas and tips for DIY arrangements? Let us know!


  1. Thanks for the post! I am going to do my flowers for my wedding this fall to try and save some money. I was wondering how I was going to figure out how many flowers that I was going to need so that I wouldn’t over buy. Thanks again!

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  2. Peonies are really to die for. They make such a wonderful bouquet, but if you DIY, budget may make them an issue, and as you say, there’s nothing wrong with garden roses, plus you can be a lot more creative with them. Great article!

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  3. Really Appreciate this post, is there any way I can get an alert email every
    time you write a fresh post?

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    • We post updates via Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Google+ when we post something new on the blog. If you are on any of those forms of social media you will get our updates!

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  4. I am DIYing my flowers; very afraid of trying to handle and care for them being that they will be delivered 2 days prior and I will be arranging them myself. Any advice?

    I am ordering 125 white roses and 30 Hydrangea stems. I have 6 bridesmaids and will be using the leftover flowers for the venue.

    Also, I am not sure if I should order 3 days prior so that I can have them arranged 2 days prior to the wedding.

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    • Hi Renai! We totally understand your worries! We are happy to answer any question that you might have! Once you receive the flowers, you will want to remove them from their boxes right away. Cut the stems of each flower and greenery about 1.5 inches in length and place them in buckets of water to rehydrate. Allow them to rehydrate for at least 24 hours before you begin to arrange them. Place the flowers in cold water to slow the blooming process and put them in warmer water to speed up the process. The flowers should perk up and look wonderful after a few hours!

      I recommend to have the flowers delivered 2 days prior to your event to ensure quality and vase life. You should arrange them the day before the event.

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  5. Thank you for the advice. My wedding will take place on a Wed and I’m searching for some garden roses for a bouquet. Seems like all online wholesale flower companies do not deliver on Mondays. I’m left with the choices of: have them deliver on Fri, Sat or Tue. They said Tue might not have enough time for the roses to bloom, Fri might be too early. Sat might run into a delay then the flowers will be left untreated for 2 days.

    Do you have any advice for me? Thank you.

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    • Hello! I would recommend to have the garden roses delivered on Tuesday as they do have a short vase. You may risk the chance of the garden roses not lasting until Wednesday if they arrive any sooner. Once you cut the stems of the garden roses, you can place them in warmer water to rehydrate. Warm water will help to speed up the blooming process. Please let us know if you have any other questions!

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  6. How many hydrangea would I need for a 4×4 square vase that also contained roses (maybe 4 roses)

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    • Hi Dani! You can use about 3-4 stems of hydrangeas for a 4×4 square vase that also has 4 stems of roses. I hope that this helps!

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  7. I making my sister a cascade bouquet for her wedding. My question is how many stems do you need for one? I know the “large” arrangements of mixed flowers is about 30-35, but would that include the trail of the cascade, or should the total go up for that style? Any advice would be greatly appreciated!


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    • Hi Tina! A cascading bouquet will include the trail in the stem count. For a large cascading bouquet, you may want to use around 35 total stems of flowers. However, this does depend upon which types of flowers you are using. I hope that this helps!

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  8. How many flowers come in a bunch? I see all your flowers are by the bunch. Wondering how many I’ll need to buy to do all my bouquet and bootiners and centerpiece.

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    • Hi Chelsea! Most flowers come in bunches with ten stems. However, this can vary. For example roses and carnations are bunched together with 25 stems. Each item will have the stem count listed per bunch. I hope that this helps!

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