How to Style Artificial Plants and Branches | Ballard Designs
Faux stems, branches and supplies for how to style them | Ballard Designs

How to Style with Artificial Plants and Branches

Natural elements bring life to a room, but that doesn't mean you have to constantly water plants and refresh flower arrangements. We love to use faux branches and stems throughout our spaces, especially when styling them using our favorite tricks.

Stems should be twice the width of your container and 1/2 to 2/3 the height. | Ballard Designs
Pairing containers and stems to style faux greenery | Ballard Designs

Pairing Vases and Stems

Just like a flower arrangement, the container will determine the shape and scale of your greenery. Here are our best tips for pairing the right container with your stems or branches.

  • The taller your stem, the taller your vase needs to be. Stems should be between 1/2 to 2/3 the height of your vase.
  • Stems should be twice the width of your container.
  • A striking container makes the arrangement more impactful, so look for something unique.
Fluff and bend stems and branches so they fall naturally in your container. | Ballard Designs

Bend Stems and Fluff

You want your greenery to fall as naturally as possible, so bend and fluff stems once you've placed them in your container. For the most organic look, some stems should flop over the edge, some should stand up straight, and leaves should face different directions. Be sure to separate leaves and flowers from each other.

Keep It Simple

In real arrangements, we prefer to use lots of plant varieties to create texture, but for faux botanicals, keep it simple. Lots of one variety makes more of a statement than several mixed together.

Olive leaf stems in wooden dough bowl | Ballard Designs
Vary stem heights of faux botanicals for a more natural look. | Ballard Designs

Vary Stem Height

In nature, branches never grow at the same pace, so create a similar effect in your arrangement by varying your stem heights.

Add Extras to Potted Plants

For faux plants that aren't in vases, we like to add extra fluff with live moss around the edges. Mosses won't wilt like live botanicals, but they go a long way in making your container look natural. Sheet moss and Spanish moss are our favorite options, but for faux succulents, other plants and rocks are great alternatives.

Moss and rocks give faux arrangements a more natural look. | Ballard Designs
Add water to clear vases with faux botanicals. | Ballard Designs

Just Add Water

If you're using a clear vase with faux botanicals, add water! You'll need to change the water every so often, but without water in the container, it's a dead giveaway that you've gone faux.

Add moss to baskets with faux trees. | Ballard Designs
Add moss to baskets with faux trees. | Ballard Designs

Baskets at the Base

For faux trees, we like to display them in a woven basket. Choose something that works with your furniture and accessories, then top the basket with a layer of moss.

Scatter Them 'Round | Ballard Designs
Scatter Them 'Round | Ballard Designs

Scatter Them 'Round

While our faux botanical spheres aren't meant to look perfectly real, they bring the same sense of life to a space as a flower arrangement or potted plant. Group multiples in a bowl or place them singly on a bookshelf or coffee table.

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