How to Create Beautiful Peony Arrangements

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Let’s create some fabulous flower arrangements. I’m sharing all of my tips and tricks for creating easy and beautiful peony arrangements. We’re covering everything including where to buy, how to arrange, and tips for keeping your arrangements looking their best.

peony Arrangement on table with candles

When it comes to my favorite flowers, peonies rank high on the list. Not only are they beautiful and available in so many varieties, but part of their magic for me is that their season is so short. In mid-spring, they pop up, and before you know it their beauty is gone and we wait for their return the following spring.

Whether you’re growing peonies in your own yard or picking up some at the grocery store, I thought it might be helpful to share how I like to arrange them. Now don’t be nervous, it’s really easy!

Love creating flower arrangements for your home? Me too! Looking for more tips? Be sure to check out my Ultimate Flower Arranging Guide.

Peony Arrangement on dresser.

Where to Buy Peonies

First, you’re going to need some peonies. One thing I did want to note is that, unlike many flowers, peonies have a short blooming season. You can typically find them in bloom from May through June. While there are some exceptions and I have seen them randomly during their off-season, this is something to keep in mind.

close up of peony flower.

PetalDriven

The peonies I’m using for this post are from PetalDriven. PetalDriven is a go-to for me when I need a lot of flowers. They offer direct (straight from the farm) wholesale flowers shipped right to your door. You can save 10% on your order by using the code “INSPIRED10” at checkout. PetalDriven was kind enough to provide all the stunning peonies you see in this post.

Grocery Store

If you just need a few, I recommend picking them up at the grocery store. I particularly love them from Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods.

peony flowers in sink.

Local Flower Shop

Your local flower shop is always a great source of beautiful blooms. You may tend to pay a bit more, but it’s always nice to support a local business. You could also ask if they have any leftover flowers or special deals on older blooms that you could take advantage of at a discounted rate.

Your Own Yard

This might be my favorite place to get peonies. I have about 18 peony bushes on my property that bloom this time of year and it’s just magical. Peony bushes do take time to establish, especially if you plant them bare-root, so have patience. Year after year you’ll see more and more buds that you can use to create beautiful peony arrangements.

peony flowers close up

Selecting a Vase

When I’m doing a flower arrangement, I generally think it’s easier to work with a vessel that has a smaller opening as I find it a bit easier to shape the arrangement and control where you want the flowers to go.

collection of vases for peony arrangement.

One of my favorite things to use for any arrangement is a pitcher. Pitchers always seem to have a perfectly sized opening.

Here are a few other favorites:

Peony Arrangement in white pitcher on counter

Arranging Peonies with Other Flowers

If you have an abundance of peonies, they can look stunning when styled in a vase altogether. I especially love this look when you can gather them from your own yard and causally and wildly pop them into a vase. In my book, it doesn’t get much better than that. (I don’t have a photo like that here, but I’ll do my best to take one for you once my peonies open up.)

mixed flowers on a table


However, if you’re looking for something a little bit more styled, I hope that some of the pictures in this post provide a little inspiration.

One of my flowers to pair with peonies is the hydrangea. Its big cloud-like and billowy blooms work perfectly with peonies. Here is one of my favorite examples from a few years ago.

Peony Arrangement on coffee table


Another favorite I discovered this year is the white bleeding heart. I have this plant in my backyard and it just so happens to bloom at the same time as peonies. It’s a match made by Mother Nature herself.

white bleeding heart.
white peony arrangement

Other coordinating flowers to consider are:

  • alstroemeria
  • roses
  • eucalyptus
  • anything else growing in your garden.

These options are pretty affordable and widely available.

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Now that you’ve gathered your flowers, it’s time to start arranging!

Peony Arrangement in glass vase.

How to Arrange Peonies in a Vase

  1. Start by removing your peonies from their packaging. Discard and recycle any paper or plastic.
  2. Fill a clean vase about 3/4ths full with room temperature water. Add in flower food.
  3. Next, you’ll want to remove some of the leaves from your stems. You want to avoid having any leaves in the water. (This goes with any flower.) Leaves in the water tend to rot which will significantly decrease the life of your arrangement and leave your water looking cloudy and smelling unpleasant.
peony flowers in a sink
  1. Using a pair of sharp scissors, cut off at least 1 inch of the stem and then place it directly into the water. Cut each stem and place it into the water as soon as you cut it. Generally speaking, I like to see the stem length as approximately 1.75 times the height of the vase. This means that the length of the stem/flower sticking out of the vase should be about 3/4ths as tall as the vase.
scissor cutting peony steam
  1. When placing the stems into the vase, I like to move around the vase rather than concentrating on one area at a time. I think this helps to create a fuller-looking arrangement. Plus, when you work this way, the stems almost create an interlocking grid helping to hold each other up.
arranging peonies.
  1. If you’re working with multiple types of flowers, I like to start with my biggest flowers first and then work in the smaller ones. If you’re using peonies that are open, they are likely to be one of the first flowers. If you’re using hydrangeas as I recommended above, start with those.
  2. Finally, refresh the water in your vase and recut your stems at least every other day if not daily. This will keep your blooms lasting the longest.

All that’s left to do is enjoy your peony arrangements!

peony arrangement in glass vase.

At Home Peony “Tricks”

  • If you’re growing your own peonies, one issue you may encounter is ants. Peony blooms can be full of them. To avoid ants in your home, just cut your stems, put them into a bucket of water, and leave them outside in a shady area for a couple of hours. In a hurry? You can dunk the blooms into water and the ants will be removed.
  • If you’re cutting peonies from your own yard, it’s recommended to cut them when the bloom is closed and when lightly squeezed feels like a marshmallow.
  • Not ready for your flower buds to open? You can cut and store them in the refrigerator. House of Hawthornes has a great tutorial on this process which I will link HERE.
close up of peony flower.
peony arrangement on stack of books

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best time of year to buy peonies?

Peonies typically bloom and are available from late spring to early summer, depending on your location. This usually falls between April and June. To catch them at their peak, check with local florists or garden centers in mid-spring.

What should I look for when choosing peonies at a store?

Look for peony buds that are firm to the touch but show the beginning of color—they will open up into lush blooms after you arrange them. Avoid fully opened flowers, as they won’t last as long.

What are the best companion flowers for peonies in an arrangement?

Peonies go well with flowers that complement their soft, voluminous shape. Consider pairing them with snapdragons, ranunculus, freesias, or eucalyptus for texture.

How should I care for my peony arrangement to make it last longer?

Keep your peony arrangement in a cool place away from direct sunlight and heat sources. Change the water every two days, and trim the stems at an angle under water to help them absorb more moisture. Adding a floral preservative can also extend their life.

Are peonies expensive?

Peonies can be on the pricier side due to their short blooming season and high demand. However, prices may vary depending on where and when you buy them. Shopping at a local farmers market or directly from a florist can sometimes be cost-effective.

peony arrangement in glass vase

Wrap Up

I hope you found this peony arrangement tutorial helpful and picked up a few tricks and tips along the way.

If you have more to add to the conversation, please let me know in the comments below. I’m by no means an expert and I always enjoy learning more.

I also wanted to offer special thanks to PetalDriven for providing the gorgeous peonies I used for this post. You can check out their entire selection of peonies HERE. If you decide to order, remember to use code “INSPIRED10” at checkout to save 10%.

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peony arrangement in glass vase.

How to Create a Beautiful Peony Arrangement

I'm sharing all of my tips and tricks for creating easy and beautiful peony arrangements. We're covering everything including where to buy, how to arrange, and tips for keeping your arrangements looking their best. 
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Flower Arranging
Keyword: flower arranging, peonies, peony, peony arrangement
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 minute
Total Time: 6 minutes
Servings: 1 arrangement

Equipment

  • 1 flower vase
  • 1 pair of scissors
  • fresh water

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch peonies

Instructions

  • Start by removing your peonies from their packaging. Discard and recycle any paper or plastic.
  •  Fill a clean vase about 3/4ths full with room temperature water. Add in flower food. 
  • Next, you'll want to remove some of the leaves from your stems. You want to avoid having any leaves in the water. (This goes with any flower.) Leaves in the water tend to rot which will significantly decrease the life of your arrangement and leave your water looking cloudy and smelling unpleasant. 
  • Using a pair of sharp scissors, cut off at least 1 inch of the stem and then place it directly into the water. Cut each stem and place it into the water as soon as you cut it. Generally speaking, I like to see the stem length as approximately 1.75 times the height of the vase. This means that the length of the stem/flower sticking out of the vase should be about 3/4ths as tall as the vase. 
  • When placing the stems into the vase, I like to move around the vase rather than concentrating on one area at a time. I think this helps to create a fuller-looking arrangement. Plus, when you work this way, the stems almost create an interlocking grid helping to hold each other up. 
  • If you're working with multiple types of flowers, I like to start with my biggest flowers first and then work in the smaller ones. If you're using peonies that are open, they are likely to be one of the first flowers. If you're using hydrangeas as I recommended above, start with those. 
  • Finally, refresh the water in your vase and recut your stems at least every other day if not daily. This will keep your blooms lasting the longest. 

Notes

If you’re growing your own peonies, one issue you may encounter is ants. Peony blooms can be full of them. To avoid ants in your home, just cut your stems, put them into a bucket of water, and leave them outside in a shady area for a couple of hours. In a hurry? You can dunk the blooms into water and the ants will be removed. 
 
If you’re cutting peonies from your own yard, it’s recommended to cut them when the bloom is closed and when lightly squeezed feels like a marshmallow. 
 
The peonies I’m using for this post are from PetalDriven. PetalDriven is a go-to for me when I need a lot of flowers. They offer direct (straight from the farm) wholesale flowers shipped right to your door. You can save 10% on your order by using the code “INSPIRED10” at checkout. PetalDriven was kind enough to provide all the stunning peonies you see in this post. 

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14 Comments

  1. Used to have loads of peonies and over the years they disappeared except for my peony tree. I just planted 6 of them! Love them. Yours are gorgeous Michael!

  2. Hi Michael, Everyone of your posts bring such joy along with helpful tips.
    Being that Spring just starting these is the perfect post with all these lovely arrangemnets.

    Maria

  3. I have 28 peony bushes at my home. I live for this time of year when they are all in bloom. I have a couple of white ones that smell amazing! My house smells so good when I bring those in. Unfortunately it only lasts for such a short period of time. I, also, have 5 cats and a dog. They are poisonous to cats and dogs. So put up high or where they don’t go if you have pets.

  4. Michael,
    Thank you for this beautifully written article. I adore peonies…you have really brought joy into my day with your peony & hydrangea arrangements, my two favorite flowers. Love peonies but hate the ant issue they bring into my home, so your tip of immersing the heads in water is wonderful. Keep creating, keep inspiring us!
    Shirley

  5. Thanks for the great tips and examples. They are beautiful! I just planted my first peony plants this year, so hopefully in a couple of years I will be able to pick my own.

    1. That’s so great to hear. It does take a while for them to get established. I add manure to mine every spring to help with bloom production.

      xo Michael