Bamboo Vases: Earth-Friendly Style and Function You’ll Love in Your Home

Bamboo vases on table

It seems every other month there’s a new home design trend we’re trying to keep up with.

The farmhouse look is out, mid-century is in!
Paint those cabinets white! Now gray! Now blue!

Trying to keep up with changing trends is expensive, wasteful, and exhausting. Our homes are supposed to be the antidote to stress, not the cause of it.

If you’re looking for a simple update that won’t take all your time and dollars, consider adding fresh flowers and a bamboo vase. The bright blooms are proven to improve your mood and a bamboo vase is the perfect eco-friendly home decor accessory for any space.

In This Article
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    What Are Bamboo Vases?

    Bamboo vases are decorative containers made out of bamboo that hold things like flowers, grasses, or bamboo sticks.

    Japanese tea masters of the 16th century are thought to be the first to use bamboo for flower vases during a flower arranging competition. During this competition, they used long tubes of bamboo stalks and placed flowers in the top or through holes in the side. It wasn't until the end of that century that the vases we are most familiar with were used as decor.

    Is Bamboo a Good Material for Vases?

    Like a lot of home decor, bamboo is a wonderful material to bring in style and sustainability. It’s durable, beautiful, and environmentally friendly.

    Benefits of a Bamboo Vase

    Bamboo is a great material for vases because it goes with any decor and it’s eco-friendly. The natural material blends well with any type of wood and can help hide the mess of stems and water needed by your blooms. You can find a wide variety of styles from lacquered spun bamboo vases to woven floor vases.

    Bamboo is a very sustainable option for flower vases because it’s such a renewable material. It’s the world's fastest-growing plant and regenerates itself when harvested. Unlike other materials used for vases, bamboo doesn’t need a lot of processing to be functional. Some bamboo vase options are as simple as a section of the bamboo pole with or without an insert to hold water.

    Challenges of a Bamboo Vase

    The first question we hear when talking about bamboo vases is, “can you put water in that?”. Short answer, yes, but you’ll likely need a liner. While bamboo is water resistant and won’t absorb water, too much moisture over time can cause the bamboo to warp or discolor. Look for a bamboo vase that has a waterproof seal or an insert made from aluminum or glass if you want your bamboo vase to hold fresh flowers and plants. If you plan to use dry grass or bamboo sticks you won’t need to worry about any special liner in your bamboo vase.

    Alternatives to Bamboo Vases

    While we clearly love the look and function of bamboo around here, there are some alternatives that make great flower vases as well.

    Glass

    Glass vases are the most popular type of vase around. They’re used by most flower delivery services so chances are you still have one stashed under your kitchen sink. Glass vases are pretty and usually inexpensive. They go with any decor because they’re usually clear and they’re fairly durable depending on the thickness. Glass vases are pretty eco-friendly too. It’s made from natural materials (sand, limestone, and soda ash), and can be recycled.

    While glass vases are an easy option, they’re also not the most exciting when you’re updating your home decor. They’re basically invisible and everyone has one. If you’re looking for some visual interest, glass isn’t usually the way to go.

    Tree Wood

    Using wood in home decor dates back thousands of years. There are hundreds of wood vase options on the market. From square boxes to modern curved designs, wood vases are a beautiful option for any decor. The natural rough texture of wood makes it ideal for balancing out the look of fresh flowers. Wood vases are very durable

    Though wood vases are beautiful, we need to be mindful of how the wood is harvested. Around 42 million trees are cut down every day to support our lifestyles. Because trees take 30-40 years to mature, we can never replace them as quickly as we take them. Trees are vital for life on earth and act as homes to 80% of all plant and animal species. Trees also produce about 28% of our oxygen. While vases aren’t single-handedly destroying our forests, it’s important to consider better options. Bamboo regenerates in a few years and produces 35% more oxygen than trees.

    Ceramic

    I love the look of a ceramic vase, especially if it has a vintage vibe. Ceramic vases can come in any shape or color and are made from natural clay so they’re pretty eco-friendly too. The clay is formed into the desired shape, painted or glazed, and fired to reveal a beautifully smooth finish. Ceramic is popular for all sizes of flower vases. They’re a great addition to mantels and make great floor vases too.

    The downside to ceramic is that it is very breakable. If you’ve ever woken up to a crash because your cat can’t resist chewing flower petals, you know what I mean. When they hit the floor, there’s no gluing them back together as they show in the movies.

    Metal

    Metal vases can be really cool and add a lot of visual impact to your space. You’ve likely seen them in the form of old-school milk jugs, but you can also find modern options that fit more contemporary homes. They can be made from aluminum, galvanized steel, brass, or bronze. Metal vases are durable and a great option for holding water as long as they’re made from a metal that is rust-resistant.

    While metal vases are more kid and pet-proof, they do have some environmental drawbacks. Metal is not a natural material so it needs to be processed into the products we need and use. Depending on the metal, this production can release greenhouse gasses leading to global warming. Metal is not biodegradable and if not recycled properly, can sit in a landfill for up to 200 years.

    Make Your Own Bamboo Vase

    If you’re the DIY type, you can make a unique bamboo vase with just a few simple materials. Gather some bamboo sticks, jute rope, and rubber adhesive, and watch LifeStyle Designs' video to create your own!

    Care and Maintenance of Bamboo Vases

    Whether you’ve bought or made your bamboo vase, you’ll want to care for it properly so it lasts for years to come.

    • Wash Your Bamboo Vase Regularly: If you’re using your vase for fresh flowers or plants, be sure to clear it out regularly. A simple soap and water rinse will clear any build-up.
    • Treat Your Bamboo Vase With Oil: Like anything made of bamboo, you want to treat it with oil regularly to prevent it from drying out. This is especially true if it comes in contact with water or sits in a warm place like a sunny window.
    • Display Your Bamboo Vase in a Safe Place: While bamboo is durable, treat your bamboo vase with care like you would any other vase. Display it on an even surface where it’s not likely to be bumped off. Bamboo vases may still crack or break in a fall.

    If you love the look of bamboo vases might want to add other natural elements to your space. Take a look at our guide to adding bamboo as a design feature in your home!