another monday, another vase

I liked the way the Heliantemum maximillianii yellows pick up where the yellow in the Dahlias leave off.

A touch of Autumn enters the picture with a branch from the sourwood tree. It will flame out in brilliant red as the days grow shorter.

More russet tones compliments of the crape myrtle.

A branch of dogwood yielded up a few of its little red fruits.

I had to take a few steps back to include the Solidago ‘Fireworks’ shooting off in every direction. I’m a day late for Cathy’s ‘In a Vase on Monday’ but you can still get in on the fun by clicking HERE.

monday vase

The matte finished pot suggested a bouquet of pale colors, a bit of a surprise in this season of bold, burnished hues. Delusional Drive was getting overgrown, reaching out to snare visitors as they struggled to reach us. My pruning efforts yielded plenty of material to work with.

Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ was beginning to color up, giving me a nice pale pink to pick up the color of the Hydrangea quercifolia. Some variegated Euonymous provides two shades of green, with the last blossom of Kniphofia ‘Percy’s Pride’ sporting almost the same color as the vase.

A few dangling blossoms of Fuchsia magellanica ‘Alba’, also known as ‘Maiden’s Blush’, complete the picture.

Oh, wait! There’s also a handful of Miscanthus ‘Morning Light’ to add a linear element and one huge leaf from the rice paper plant.

Cathy of Rambling in the Garden hosts In a Vase on Monday weekly and it is always worth a visit. I put this arrangement together two weeks ago and the only things that petered out and had to be removed were the Kniphofia and the Fuchsia. It needed to be an outdoor arrangement because the Hydrangea immediately began to drop teensy seeds all over the place. Being outside in the cool probably contributed to its longevity.

i’m back…with a new monday vase

My friend Susan B gave me this rustic metal tray filled with five vases.

What fun it has been, cruising the garden in search of just the right materials. Here we have chive blossoms, sprigs of Euphorbia ‘Fen’s Ruby’, Geum ‘Totally Tangerine’ and an Iris that shall remain nameless.

Taking a break from working at Joy Creek for health reasons is a sad state of affairs, but let’s look on the bright side. I can get back to blogging a bit more and participating in Cathy’s In a Vase on Monday meme.

Here’s the last bouquet I did for Joy Creek, where bouquets come together nearly effortlessly, given the wealth of materials to work with.

spring sampler in a vase

Anyone else feeling downright giddy with the early signs of spring?

Bits of this and that: some Téta a Téte daffodils, always the first to bloom; a couple of Hellebores; one tiny sprig of Stachyrus praecox (on the shrub, those racemes of pale yellow buds would be dangling downward); foliage of Brachyglottis greyi and Cotoneaster; three sprigs of pussy willows. The nearly heart-shaped perfume bottle was added to pick up the color of the Hellebore and in recognition of Saint Valentine’s Day.

The sweet pussy willows deserve a photo of their own. A friend gave me a few stems in a bouquet, which I enjoyed indoors for a long time, then stuck in the ground. This is the first year they have produced stems to spare.

So Welcome, Spring! Hope you can stay a while! Cathy, over at Rambling in the Garden hosts In a Vase on Monday, where she rounds up many bloggers’ vases for your viewing pleasure each and every Monday of the year.

like the white rabbit…

…I’m late for a very important date.

…late in so many ways. I’d been eyeing the bright red new foliage of Photinia for weeks but never got around to cutting it for a vase. As it transitioned from red to green, it passed through this coppery/bronze stage. One opportunity lost, another presents itself.

It seemed like the perfect foil for my favorite of all the Alliums: A. siculum bulgaricum.

Here’s a closer look, without the background noise. See why I like it?

An oddball iris with an oddball name: ‘Alley Oops’ (who thinks of these things?) made the cut as well.

A handful of pebbles serve the dual purpose of holding the stems in place and acting as a design element. Now I’ll send you to Rambling in the Garden, to see what Cathy and friends have found to put in a vase this week. About that very important date: it’s Monday of each and every week, for the punctual among you.

a late vase or two

My vases this week are some I put together at work. They are in their second week, so I thought I would bring to your attention some things with a long vase life. The yellow flowers are Halimium. The branches held many buds, so though each blossom falls after a couple of days, new buds open, for an ever-changing composition. The Spirea ‘Goldmound’ is the only thing that needed grooming at the end of one week. It’s golden halo in the background is missed, but there is still a lot going on.

The big surprise, for me, were the dark leaves of Anthriscus sylvestris ‘Ravenswing’. I expected them to wilt quickly but here they are, still soldiering on.

Of course I had to bring one home to add to my own garden. It forms a 1′ rosette, with umbrels similar to Queen Anne’s lace shooting up to 3′. I say “Hooray!” to its habit of seeding around.

Embothrium was the IT pland a couple of years ago and I can see why.

Euphorbia ‘Fire Charm’ starts small but quickly forms a good sized clump. The foliage is nearly as fetching as the orange bracts. Even after all that goes away, bright red stems remain well into the winter months. It’s a good idea to let cut stems sit in water for a while before using in an arrangement because the milky sap clouds the water at first.

The second vase is more subdued. I don’t have ID’s for everything here but that background foliage is Buxus sempervirens ‘Variegata’.

The tall stem of pinkish flowers is Lamium orvala, another find I may have to add to my so-called cutting garden.

In the “never say never” category is Deutzia ‘Chardonnay Pearls’. Unlike the upright shrubs, which I found to get scruffy looking, this forms a low mound dotted with little, pearly buds which eventually open into starlike flowers.

My work schedule keeps me from always hitting on Mondays with my vases (sometimes skipping entirely) but you can always count on Cathy at Rambling in the Garden to show up with a vase of her own and links to other bloggers bitten by the vase bug. You may be next.

it’s lilac time, iavom

This handsome tray and silverware caddy were Festivus gifts from a dear friend who knows my taste. New acquisitions in the background are, from left to right: Arctostaphylos ‘Pacific Mist’, Globularia cordifolia and Lilium martagon ‘Nepera’ (off subject, but I figure you would want to know).

I just happen to have some water glasses that fit perfectly into those compartments so naturally it has been pressed into service as a vase.

Jason, at gardeninacity, recently posted a tutorial on keeping lilacs fresh indoors. You can see it here. I don’t know about you but some of his information was news to me. Fingers crossed that these bouquets will last more than a few hours. In addition to the lilacs, there are some forget-me-nots, Persicaria ‘Purple Shield’ (see how it matches the candle holder and the tablecloth?…happy accident) and one orange Geum that was added when the whole arrangement seemed to threaten to go all prissy on me.

The second vase is an afterthought because I had material left over. As often happens, I like it better than the one I set out to make. It is made up of the same ingredients minus the forget-me-nots and plus Euphorbia robiae and Hosta leaves, two to line the vase and one in the bouquet.

I wish I knew what resulted in this dramatic shot. Even after all this time, the inner workings of my camera remain a mystery.

I don’t have many surfaces that lend themselves to displaying vases so these are lined up on the dining room table, even though they don’t necessarily go together. The talented and imaginative Cathy at Rambling in the Garden hosts In a Vase on Monday (iavom, in case that title confused you) every Monday, without fail.

the rites of spring…in a vase

This heavy cast glass vase is thin when viewed from the side. Viewed head-on, it is broader, making it a good choice for holding stems in place. I neglected to photograph it from that angle so you’ll just have to take my word for it.

The Rhododendron ‘Ilia Cerise’ and its bold foliage dominate here, with a color echo from the Ribes and the light touch of a few stems of Narcissus ‘Thalia’.

If we zoom in, we can appreciate a stem of bleeding heart and one of Brunnera.

I have to point the camera right at the delicate Epimedium blooms to see them in a photo. Our eyes are much better at picking up these details in real life. Every Monday, you can check out vase art from around the blogosphere by visiting Cathy at Rambling in the Garden. I wouldn’t miss it, even when I fail to join in the fun.

got the blues…

…and lovin every minute of it.

In the garden, a mix of Pulmonarias, all from blog swaps and I’ve lost track of which ones they are.

A few Muscari latifolium, which I keep expecting to multiply…some day.

In the meantime, I can spare a few for a vase. Even after the flowers fade, the spotted foliage of the Pulmonaria makes a nice groundcover at the woodland’s edge.

To see what others are singling out for vase duty this Monday, visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.

monday vases gettingeasier

Little vases get a workout about now, when the pickins are still slim.

The leaves of a variegated Fatshedra and Arum italicum are a showy background for snowdrops and a couple of sprigs of Sarcacocca. The snowdrops have been muddied by rain and beaten up by hail. All the more reason to bring them indoors, where their delicacy can be truly appreciated.

At Joy Creek, making bouquets is a snap. Hellebores are scattered here and there around the gardens. Here, I’ve paired them with a stem of Osmanthus ‘Goshiki’ in a simple little bud vase that holds them upright to compensate for their nodding tendencies.

Pieris japonica ‘Prelude’ seemed to be begging for a star turn in a vase.

I was only too happy to oblige. See what others are finding for IaVoM (short for In a Vase on Monday) by visiting Cathy at Rambling in the Garden. It has become a Monday ritual for many.