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A flower frog is a heavy object that is placed in the bottom of flower vases to hold the flower stems in place. The stems of cut flowers are supported by the construction of the flower frog, while its weight provides support so the vase and flowers do not fall over. Flower frogs are also called pin frogs.
There are several different types of frogs. Pin frogs have sharp spikes. The flower stems are driven down over the spikes or pressed between the spikes. These types are commonly metal, as glass and ceramic spikes are less sturdy. Another type has holes in the top. The stems of the flowers are placed into the holes and held in place.
A frog is typically made out of a heavy material such as pottery, bronze, lead or glass. Basic styles are simple, either round or square shaped, and meant to be hidden by the material of the vase. Decorative ones come in an endless array of shapes, including turtles, fish, and frogs as well as geometric shapes. The range of colors is as limitless as the available shapes. Decorative flower frogs often are used to create an interesting element in the bottom of a clear vase.
Arranging a vase of flowers is an art in itself, and a frog is a useful but often unseen element of a successful flower arrangement. In a wide-mouth vase, tall flowers tend to fall outward and sprawl over the sides, and some top-heavy flowers will fall out of a wide-mouth vase. Using a frog gives the tall and top-heavy flowers support to keep them upright in the center of vase.
Tall, narrow vases also can be top heavy when filled with flowers. A flower frog placed in the bottom of the vase will add weight to balance out the weight at the top created by the flowers. A frog is also useful when trying to create a minimalist effect with a single flower standing upright in a vase or using a shallow vase for tall arrangements.
Flower frogs range from simple, inexpensive models readily available at flower stores to antiques and collectibles that can range significantly in price. Not just for the vase anymore, frogs have been put to many other uses. For example, decorative flower frogs make attractive cardholders, pencil holders, paintbrush holders, and paperweights.
Another type of object that helps keep floral arrangements from falling out of place is a kenzan, which is specifically used in Japanese flower arrangements called "ikebana." Although spiky like pin frogs, the kenzan is only used in the art of ikebana. I've often seen florists also use blocks or balls made out of foam to keep flowers and plant stems in place.
In the case of edible arrangements, you'll often find edible flowers, fruit, and other plants attached to long plastic sticks and forks that are spread out through the entire arrangement instead of stuck just at the bottom of the vase.