In a vase on Monday: blue, silver and red (and lime and burgundy)

Still more rain this week (will it ever be summer?) which has meant that the cooler season blooms such as Nigella damascena and larkspur Consolida ambigua 'Imperial Mix' continue to bloom happily (when we get a heatwave, the nigella in particular, tends to go straight to seed). I made two bunches this week, both to give away to friends. The first features flowers and foliage from my own garden:

This bunch featured: catmint Nepeta 'Walker's Blue', larkspur Consolida ambigua 'Imperial Mix', love-in-a-mist Nigella damascena, Rosa 'Camp David', apple mint Mentha suaveolens, liquorice plant Helichrysum petiolare, lamb's ear Stachys byzantina and statice Limonium sinuatum

My arrangement briefly looked good sitting on our red kitchen table until it was given away a couple of hours later. The bowl of fruit on the right are loquats Eriobotrya japonica, one of my favourite fruits, given to me by a friend. I've never seen them for sale in a greengrocer (I think because they are so delicate, they probably do not transport well). If you've never tried one and get the chance to taste, do!

My second bunch, also for a friend, breaks the IAVOM rules slightly (I hope Cathy will forgive me :)
While all the foliage and supporting flowers are from either my own garden, or the park down the street, the chysanthemums were purchased as I was lacking in larger feature flowers for this bunch. They were given to another friend for her birthday, which I had completely forgotten about (I blame pregnancy brain fog :) so I wanted to create something a bit special to make it up to her:

There are two types of shop-bought chrysanthemums. The foliage and supporting flowers (from my garden and foraged locally) are: Prunus nigra (if you look carefully there are a few fruit in there too), sacred bamboo Nandina domestica, unknown Cotoneaster sp., blowfly bush Rhamnus alaternus, parsley flowers Petroselinum crispum, pink berries from the peppercorn tree Schinus molle and the bracts of an unknown Euphorbia sp.

 
I tried to select foliage to suit the lime green and burgundy colour scheme of the chrysanthemums. If I wasn't trying to downsize my potted plant collection, I would have tried striking a few cuttings from these chysanthemums as I think both are gorgeous.

In between rain showers, I've been busy getting some long overdue garden jobs done. The first was to pot up some annual warm season colour to brighten the front of the 'man cave' (hubby's home office). Here's the 'before' photo:

The empty pots previously held cinerarias which were well past their best


I replaced these with colourful annual seedlings in blue, purple and yellow/orange

These should brighten the place up a bit. Now we just need some sun!

Another garden highlight this week is the blooming of this gorgeous unknown Epiphyllum cv.

If you would like to share a bunch of flowers and/or foliage from your garden, why not join the In a Vase on Monday meme? Just share a blog link of your creation on Cathy's Rambling in the Garden blog page, and while you're there, have a look at other arragements from around the world.

Comments

  1. That Epiphyllum is impressive! Both you bouquets are beautiful. I sowed larkspur and Orlaya seeds about 2 weeks ago but have yet to see signs of germination so I'm already getting anxious - sharp temperature fluctuations probably aren't helping matters. The chrysanthemums you purchased to flesh out the birthday bunch are lovely. I've been tempted to buy Chrysanthemums myself as chrysanthemums, like tulips and peonies, are failures in the garden here.

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    1. Thanks Kris, the epiphyllum was purchased as a cutting, but was meant to be a pinky orange cultivar, so I got a bit of a surprise when it bloomed for the first time! I do love it though. Sounds like you have sown and planted seedlings of so many beautiful cool season blooms for future IAVOM creations. I’ve never grown orlaya before and will be interested to see your flowers, particularly artfully placed in your arrangements.

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  2. Your vases are both lovely and so uplifting on a gloomy wintry day here! There are several things I don't recognize, so I will be googling the parsley flower and peppercorn tree. Both must be wonderful to have in the garden. The flower in the last photo is remarkable too. 😃 (And I love your kitchen table! 😉)

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    1. Thanks Cathy, glad it could brighten your gloomy day! By parsley flower, I mean just the common old parsley herb from the garden (I had no idea the botanical name was Petroselinum crispum - had to look that one up!) Thanks, I love the table too. It's vintage 1960's and suits our retro kitchen :)

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  3. Both your arrangements are top notch, and I am sure the recipients are delighted. The Epiphyllum is pretty amazing, pretty and amazing!

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    1. Thanks, Noelle - both recipients did enjoy their bunches :)

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  4. That epiphyllum is wonderful, both in size and colour - a real shot of sunshine! Thank you for sharing both your vases today, both so very different. You have made such a great job of blending flowers and foliage in the second one and I am sure the birthday girl will be delighted. The contrasting colours of the first summery bunch is really striking - although I have successfully had some larkspurs flowering the last 2 years the blooms never seem to be dense spikes

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    1. Thanks Cathy, I guess as the flowers only last a day each, the epiphyllum makes up for it by putting on a spectacular -if short- show!

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  5. Beautiful arrangements both of them and your friend will be most pleased to receive such a thoughtful gift. I hope that you get that much wanted sunshine soon. I always find it difficult to get my head round the seasons in the southern hemisphere but I think that you still have summer ahead of you so there's ample time yet 😀

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    1. Thanks Anna, yes, you're right, we are just coming into summer here, however usually in our climate it would well and truly have warmed up by now. I've just seen the forecast, with a couple of sunny days due later in the week, yay! I can get out there and do some long overdue weeding!

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  6. The first bouquet is lovely with a big beautiful red rose for the center, but the second is even better!

    Is that Scleranthus biflorus in the top row far right of your pot array? Such a cool, cool plant. I've killed it at least twice. Never had any idea of what it needed. Back when I tried it info on Australian plants was pretty hard to find. All those pots will look great with blues and oranges.

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  7. Thanks for the nice comments HB🙂 You’re spot on, that is Scleranthus biflorus and I agree - it is a super cool plant. I’m still figuring out what it wants too but it seems to be happy there in pretty much all day sun. It gets regular water (I don’t think it’s particularly drought tolerant) and little in the way of fertiliser - just a little half strength liquid native plant food occasionally. I think good drainage is key. If we had a severe heatwave I think I’d probably cover it with an umbrella for the duration. It must be happy as it is rapidly engulfing the whole pot! Will you give it another go? I love it en masse in a rockery.

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