"I put flowers in the vase."
You can actually see in the letter tiles you are supposed to use ました, as there is no ます.
Since the desktop version (at least) now allows typed input, this is no longer true; as such, either present or past tense should be accepted.
'put' is not neccessarily past tense. For example "What do you do at the cemetary every Sunday?" "I put flowers in the vases." ⬅ implies action is done routinely
Because saying this in the simple present doesn't make sense, but you might say "I'm putting the flowers in the vase."
Actually, since there are many other sentences like that in the present, I'd say it makes sense.
That's exactly what I was going to reply. There are special cases where present tense makes sense, but the obvious usage for 90% of the cases it is going to be past tense. There negative votes hiding this post that explains why, which aren't helping anyone.
Eh, I'd agree but Duolingo makes heavy use of the English present simple to translate the same tense in other languages, even if present continuous would be more natural in English - it's their way of checking you can recognise and use the same tense in the other language
If you got a sentence like 昼ごはんを食べます you'd be expected to put "I eat lunch" and not "I am eating lunch" or "I am going to eat lunch". It's the same going the other way too, so in this environment you could interpret an ambiguous verb like put either way. They should definitely both be accepted
As usual, if you honestly think your translation is a valid one, report it! They add alternatives eventually
In English the verb put is the same for present and past so present form should be accepted
They may have to change this to "I have put flowers in the vase" to clarify. I know it implies the perfect aspect, which wouldn't be quite right either (in Japanese), but I can't think of another solution.
I was so geared to present tense, I couldn't even see the perfectly grammatical potential past tense in there. It's a hazard of these weird sample sentences with their plain present tense that nobody actually speaks in, you learn to look for slightly odd sentences and ignore more sensible ones.
Nuances and cultural differences aside, sometimes the difficulty in accurate translation could be what shows up as present tense in the original language must be converted into past tense in the target language or vice versa to be correct
Oh man, having a word only partially written in kanji is terrible. Took me forever to see what it was.