Monday, February 23, 2015

In a Vase on Monday: A Fight for Dominance

If you've read my last Bloom Day posts, you may realize that I've become obsessed with Grevilleas.  As Grevillea 'Superb' recently bloomed, it seemed a good choice as the centerpiece of this week's vase, prepared in connection with the meme hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.  (I still can't bring myself to cut the flowers of G. 'Peaches and Cream' but 'Superb' is tucked further out of sight so a vase is a good way to increase my viewing opportunities.)  'Superb's' blooms are very bright and I picked equally bright companions, setting up an unanticipated struggle for dominance as the vase's focal point.

Front view

Back view


Here's what's included:

  • Alstroemeria, pink (noID)
  • Freesia, yellow
  • Gaillardia aristata 'Gallo Peach'
  • Grevillea 'Superb' 
  • Pelargonium x hortorum 'Mrs. Pollock'
  • Xylosma congestum


The deep yellow Freesia are blooming like gangbusters and sweetly scent the room when included in a vase

The Gaillardia would probably outshine the competition if their stems were longer (and the Freesia hadn't partially hidden them)

Even if the Grevillea isn't quite as bright as some of the other blooms, the bloom has a more complex and interesting form

The Pelargonium's foliage is attractive on its own

But the Pelargonium also produces an almost florescent orange flower (I usually remove the flowers but I couldn't bring myself to do so this time)

New Xylosma foliage, cut from the hedge that surrounds our home, is the most demure element in today's vase


Which flower do you think steals the show in today's vase?  The vase landed in the front entry.  Last week's orchid vase still sits on the dining room table, looking little different than it did last week.


The Leptospermum and Coleonema in last week's vase have deteriorated somewhat but not the Cymbidiums!


Visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden to see what she's put in a vase this week and to find links to the creations of other participating gardeners.


All material © 2012-2015 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

29 comments:

  1. The Grevillea of course! :) if we had a climate and conditions similar to yours we'd well get into Grevilleas as well.

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    1. I've already lost count of how many I have! But then, why count when I'm sure to add more soon?!

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  2. Grevilleas always steal the show in my book. :)

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    1. The flowers are so intricate, aren't they?

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  3. I love all your vases Kris and this is one of my favourites. I don't think there is a fight for domination because all the bright colours play off each other. I adore Freesia and am waiting for mine to flower, I've seen some buds but I ting it will be a few weeks before they bloom, until I can enjoy yours, although not the perfume of course which would be worth having even if the flower wasn't as lovely.

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    1. Too my nose, Freesia is among the most lovely floral scents around. I should probably look for perfume in that scent - surely, there must be some.

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  4. I love each of the flowers you've included. What a great collection you grow (and I see you did have some rain. Nice.) The Grevillea has an interesting form, but I think the bright yellow of the freesia stands out above all. Lovely.

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    1. Yes, we did get a little rain! It was a smidge short of a 1/2 inch here but, still, more than the forecasters originally predicted and every drop counts.

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  5. Last week's vase is still looking wonderful - could it be even more so, as the fading accompaniments are now the perfect match for the table runner...? And what a gloriously bright vase you have today, belying the fact you have had rain. What a sunny vase for the chilly February that some of us are having at the moment :) Thanks for sharing

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    1. Our sky was already sunny Monday morning as the clouds scuttled east. It should remain bright and clear (and relatively warm) through the workweek but we have another chance of rain for the weekend, which, for us, is cause for celebration.

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  6. I love this explosion of bright saturated colors in this arrangement! Grevillea is always very interesting!

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    1. I've yet to meet a Grevillea I haven't liked.

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  7. For me the bright yellow freesia at the center of the arrangement is the point to which my eye is continually drawn. I don't see the colors fighting, really. As close color wheel neighbors they are playing very well together.

    Honestly, with the gorgeous collection of flowers you are successfully growing despite drought and critters and litigious neighbors, I don't think you could put together a clunker of an arrangement even if you set out to do so. Just. Not. Possible.

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    1. This time of year, there's plenty to choose from but it can be tough during the summer months. One late summer day, you may find me constructing a bouquet out of succulents.

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  8. Fabulous assortment of flowers and foliage this week. Kris I am also in love with your Grevillea. I can see why you don't want to cut it. The freesia definitely was what I saw first and the Pelargonium foliage is perfect and out of this world. This is a stunning, bright and richly textured vase that I would love if I received it as a gift.

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    1. You'll note I cut just one flower of Grevillea 'Superb.' I've yet to have the stomach to cut any of the G. 'Peaches and Cream.'

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  9. Hi Kris, well if this bouquet doesn't get one in a good mood, then I don't know what will :-)! It is totally bright and cheerful and makes it very clear that spring is here. My favorite flowers in this bouquet are the yellow freesias and the alstroemerias. I have to admit that I envy you about the latter. I have two different varieties in my garden and non of them is blooming, yet. Did you give yours a special treatment, that they bloom so early? Also I love the leaves or the geranium. They are so colorful that they can beat a flower. Thanks for this pick me up - post this morning!
    Warm regards,
    Christina

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    1. I didn't do anything to or for this Alstroemeria, Christina - I haven't even fed it. None of my other Alstroemeria are blooming - just this one clump and it always seems to appear earlier than the others. I'm sorry that I can't identify the cultivar - it came with the house. All I can tell you is that it's a deciduous variety with fairly short stems.

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    2. Kris, thanks for your answer! Maybe your alstroemeria is simply an early blooming variety. I am feeling better about my alstroemerias today, since one has at least set buds by now. I always have the impression that fertilizing really helps them to bloom in my yard. I fed my two varieties with fish emulsion about 2 weeks ago and now things seem to start to happen.
      Christina

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  10. This one is first rate ! You must let us know how long the Grevillea holds up in a vase...

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    1. I cut Grevillea 'Superb' once or twice last year, Kathy, and my recollection is that it holds on close to a week. I should try conditioning the stem in hot water and see if that has any effect in extending its vase life. If I cut a longer stem, that might make a difference too.

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  11. Fantabulous, and going grevillea crazy is a good thing in my book.

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    1. I'm glad you sympathize with my obsession. However, if the trend continues, my husband may begin looking for a cure for this particular mental disorder.

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  12. The Freesia is the flower that caught my eye today - I just love the scent! But your Grevillea, which is another new plant to me, is fascinating in its shape and colour. I also love the pelargonium foliage. It's all a lovely mix of cheery colour and you always manage to get your vases looking great from both sides! :)

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    1. Nothing much beats a Freesia for scent, Cathy! This time of year, I'm always banging my head wondering why I didn't plant more of them in the fall.

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  13. What a sight for sore eyes, I do hope you have that saying over there. I do like the Alstroemeria but the real stand out has to be the Grevillia

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    1. We do indeed know and use that expression, Angie. We are, after all, a polyglot nation. I hope your sore eyes see blue skies and green growth soon!

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  14. What an explosion of colour. I can understand your passion for Grevillea. They are gorgeous.

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  15. I love the combination of strong yellows and pink, and so think the combination is the star. Noel Kinbsbury has written repeatedly that yellow and pink just don't go together; I think he's nuts. Your vase of flowers sent me into paroxysms of joy. -Jean

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