Make A Floating Floral Wreath Without Polluting The Ocean

In Featured, Floral Design by Seamus9 Comments

A friend lost her son & asked if I would do flowers for the beach service. I made an eco floating floral wreath, in masculine colors, sent out to sea…

floating floral wreath

As a rule, I specialise in wedding, event & high fashion flowers only but this week amongst a wonder-whirl of love-filled Valentine’s Day events & funtastic photo shoots I did something a bit closer to my heart.

A dear friend of mine sadly lost her son earlier in the week. She asked if I would do flowers for the service… I took this as an honour (I knew her son from my high school days).

Her son was an avid surfer so she wanted to incorporate things from the beach to make the floral pieces more personal.

How To Make A Bio-degradable Floral Wreath

I ordered a unique collection of flowers in the masculine & neutral tones of orange, red & green. Using the orange & red to keep the design bold and strong, and the green to neutralize my color palette.

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I chose flowers that created a lot of movement through texture eg. lotus pods and orchids… for a more robust & unrefined well as going to the beach and gathering items for this special occasion…everything from large palm berries and seed pods to drift wood.

This wreath had to float and be completely biodegradable (as it was being placed in the ocean) so I was unable to use your traditional “oasis” foam wreath and had to think outside of the square…

floral wreath detailThis piece is a floating floral wreath – completely biodegradable – made from a large collection of dried out sticks twigs and leaf matter, bound with vines. It is approx 65-70cm across. Featuring a collection of beachy, sophisticated, arty flowers in more masculine colors – including orchids, roses, disbuds, sims & lotus pods.

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Earthy and Wild with a Freshness To It

Recently here on the Gold coast we had Cyclonic weather, so there were lots of fallen branches in my backyard from the high winds. I put on my “Hunter & Gatherer” cap and wrangled up a large selection of dried sticks, twigs & vines.

I manipulated them into a large wreath frame, all the little twigs and sticks poking and scratching me … my arms looked as if they had been scratched by a cat!!

The morning of the service all of the flowers were placed into the frameworks and the piece looked every part of a beach wreath. Earthy and wild with a freshness to it.

The floating floral wreath was specifically for a ‘paddle-out” as part of the farewell ceremony, here on the Gold Coast. (A paddle-out is when a lot of surfers paddle out to the ocean, beyond the waves, and join as a large circle. The wreath is placed in the centre of the circle.)

Flowers by Julia-Rose

Julia-Rose specialises in flowers for weddings, events, runway & advertising campaigns. She’s been featured in Gold Coast Wedding Magazine, The Courier Mail, The Sun, ABC news & Fashion TV. Julia also teaches floristry at the Gold Coast TAFE and writes for various floral publications. Her love of flowers stems from a childhood spent playing in her grandmother’s garden, spending hours hidden inside the cavernous branches of the beautiful hydrangea.

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Seamus is Tesselaar Flowers' digital marketing manager. He's a creative marketing geek, writer, musician & accidental flower lover. He helps small businesses with websites and web marketing. If you need any help regarding the Tesselaars website you can contact him on


  1. As an avid believer in life without floral foam I was so happy to read about Julia-Rose’s foam free wreath. I have also made foam free funeral tributes but have still relied on wire to secure the flowers – making it not quite 100% biodegradable. I was curious as to whether Julia-Rose has used wire in this case or possibly string?

    1. i’m making one this morning for an ocean service this afternoon and am using a combination of cotton thread and raffia to secure the flowers and greenery in place on a grape vine wreath. wish me luck!!

  2. Hi Christie

    Thank you for your kind words on my fb page.

    In this wreath I really wanted to make it a goal to not to use anything that was not biodegradable, as its soul purpose was to go into the ocean & stay there.
    I was imagining one of those pictures you see with the poor little turtles stuck in plastic ..and me being the cause!

    The base was made completely from dried branches with the leaf matter still on them, to create a cushion inside of the structure.
    Basically I weaved a nice tight big length of branches..approx just over a 100cm (40 inches) long.
    Once I had reached the desired length I intertwined the branches back into one another so they held each other in tight, then reinforced the whole structure with dodder vine and other collected vines and twigs …and 3 single loop binds of hemp string.
    ( I have a picture of the pre-base on instagram -untouched without flowers in it – flowersbyjuliarose )

    I specifically picked long lasting flowers as I knew they would not be able to be placed in water vials.

    As the base was so dense it was quite easy to place the flowers into it on the morning of the service without fear that they would shift or move.

    Julia rose

  3. Julie that was a very special thing to do for your friend she will never forget what you did for her son. I can just see you carrying all your bits and pieces of beach drift wood and sea weed. Love Jan Millard

    1. Author

      Hi Stephanie, I am no expert but I think it is a fair bet to guess that these would be present in such minute quantities when compared to the vastness of the oceans as to have an infinitesimal effect an anything.

  4. Hello,
    Beautiful!!. What to do something biodegradable throwing into the ocean for my sister.
    I am unable to find anything on what flowers would be harmful. I want to use lavender, Do you know if this a ok Flower for ocean wildlife?

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