Monday, April 20, 2015

In a Vase on Monday: False Start

Last week, I got it into my head that I was going to use Pelargonium 'Oldbury Duet' as the centerpiece for this week's vase, prepared in connection with the meme hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.  Why I fixated on that particular flower with its relatively short stems, I can't say, except that I do like the way the sun shines through the flower petals in the early morning.

Pelargonium 'Oldbury Duet', photographed in the garden for Bloom Day


However, when I went to clip my first flowers from the shrub, I realized that the high winds we've had for the last few days had done the plant little good so, with one stem in hand, my plan fell apart.  I decided to stick with the color scheme anyway.  Here's what I put together:

Front view

Back view - the leaves make me think of the train on a formal dress


While the vase I used is short, its opening is rather wide so I ended up using a lot of flowers to fill it:

  • Alstroemeria (no ID)
  • Centranthus ruber album
  • Cercis occidentalis 
  • Coleonema album
  • Cuphea ignea 'Starfire Pink'
  • Gomphrena decumbens 'Itsy Bitsy'
  • Lagurus ovata 
  • Pelargonium 'Oldbury Duet'
  • Pelargonium peltatum (double-flowered form, no ID)


Alstroemeria is still plentiful in my garden

Centranthus (photobombed here by Alstroemeria and Cuphea 'Starfire Pink') spreads like a weed in the driest areas of my garden

The seedpods of Cercis occidentalis, the Western Redbud, are more magenta than they appear in this photo

Lagurus ovata, aka Hare's Tale Grass, shown here with Gomphrena 'Itsy Bitsy', is incredibly soft  - I wish I could make a sweater of it

The tiny stem of Pelargonium 'Oldbury Duet' that started things off is barely visible as part of the overall composition

The double- flowered form of Pelargonium peltatum is front-and-center


This week's vase is in the front entryway (mainly because it doesn't look good with the current table runner in the dining room).



You can see Cathy's vase and find links to other gardeners' Monday creations here.


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

36 comments:

  1. Lovely bold colour scheme today Kriss, sorry to hear you've had lots of wind, the worst thing there is for the garden; its been very windy here too this spring. I really like your Alstroemerias, I think the ones I planted last year are coming back, I wasn't sure they would survive the winter.

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    1. I think I need to keep my own weather records. It seems to me that we're getting a lot more wind but maybe I'm just noticing it more as I can't provide the supplemental water to offset the desiccating effect of the wind.

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  2. Yes, nice colors, strong like the wind has been (here, too, not gentle). Plus some unusual components ... redbud seedpods, the grass heads (soft) and some purple-magenta-ish spiky thing (gomphrena, perhaps?) I like the way you used them all because of their color.

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    1. The purple-magenta spiky thing is indeed Gomphrena 'Itsy Bitsy' (called 'Little Grapes' elsewhere as I recall).

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  3. You truly put another beautiful vase together today, Kris! I especially love the alstroemeria, the pelargonium peltatum and the centranthus ruber album in this arrangement. It is hard to believe that you wrote that the latter is spreading even in the driest areas of your garden. That is my kind of plant! Gosh, I really think I need to get the white centranthus for my own garden. Thanks for this wonderful and inspiring post!
    Warm regards,
    Christina

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    1. The Centranthus REALLY does spread like a weed here, Christina. The white form is harder to come by but I'm trying to encourage it to self-seed freely (while putting limits on the pink and red forms).

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  4. Your pelargoniums are gorgeous! The double flowered one looks like a miniature Hansa rose and I love 'Oldbury Duet', both for its velvety looking texture and beautiful coloring.

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    1. The variegated foliage of Pelargonium 'Oldbury Duet' is also very pretty. I had 3 plants at one time but the raccoons took a fancy to them and I lost 2.

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  5. Kris once again you have outdone yourself...the colors and the textures are wonderful....I especially am drawn to the grass and seedpods...wow!

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    1. I'd have liked to give the seedpods more prominence, Donna, but I just couldn't bring myself to cut more of the Redbud's stems.

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  6. Another outstanding arrangement! I'm a big fan of bold colors and love the soft grass and seedpods! Happy Monday, Kris!

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    1. Thanks and happy Monday to you, Peter!

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  7. I love that you have so many flowers blooming at a time you can stick with a color selection and simply swap out the central players. And what a color selection it is this week. This might be my favorite arrangement so far.

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    1. It's the peak of bloom here, Deb. I could have produced vases in any number of color compositions but time and patience were lacking.

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  8. Amazing colour scheme, Kris, so bright and cheerful!Thanks for sharing it!

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  9. Beautiful rich colour and well done that you still managed to stick to your intended colour scheme!

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    1. There are a lot of flower choices in the garden right now. Late summer will be another matter.

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  10. Some great colour matching - and that Hare's Tale Grass is a lovely addition. I like your close up photos of the various contents too. Thanks for sharing

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    1. I can't tell you how much I love that grass. I liked it even before it produced tails, as the foliage is also cashmere-soft. Its only negative is that it wants more water than it's getting.

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  11. Very beautiful Kris. I like your Pelargonium. Someone gave me "bunny tails" once grown from seed, but it never did very well in my garden. Maybe it's the same as yours. So cute.

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    1. The grass is cute but also incredibly tactile, Susie. I just looked up bunny tail grass and it appears to be the same plant. Parks Seeds says it's drought tolerant but you wouldn't think that from the behavior of my transplants - maybe it's better if grown from seed.

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  12. Wow - such a bright and cheery mix. I'm sure this brightens whatever room you place it in!

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    1. Thanks Rebecca! It is a nice vase to come home to.

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  13. Seed pods and soft grass "heads" (?) ... What's not to love?

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    1. You should feel how soft that grass is!

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  14. Lovely pink colour scheme. Your alstroemerias are such a gorgeous colour. They never seem to be out of bloom. I love your pelargoniums too.

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    1. It's funny that you say that about the Alstroemeria. I had an evergreen variety in my old garden, which bloomed off and on for most of the year but all the varieties I inherited with this garden go dormant from summer until spring and I haven't been able to find the variety I had before. Too bad I didn't dig some up to bring with me!

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  15. The color palette is gorgeous. Your choices are outstanding. Your arrangement is perfection! I love that sweet grass and who'd a thunk that cercis developed such amazing seed pods? I don't think I've ever seen them here. Just beautiful Kris. You rock!

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    1. Thanks Grace! The seedpods on the Cercis generally make much more of a statement in my garden than the flowers.

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  16. The colours are beautiful today, Kris. And it really is a gorgeous arrangement. I love the seedpods and the Hare's Tail Grass. I also loved seeing that you grow Centranthus as well - one of the few plants that we share I think, as it loves my rockery! Mine is mostly red, but I also have some white which doesn't seem to seed so well.

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    1. The white Centranthus really doesn't seem to be as vigorous as the pink or red varieties, does it? Perhaps I'll make a more conscious effort to spread it about.

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  17. The pelargonium did well inspiring such a lovely color scheme :) I've hesitated even thinking about growing Centranthus - is the white-flowered form better behaved? I love the effect it has in today's vase! Also love the redbud pods... :)

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    1. The white Centranthus definitely seems more well-behaved than the pink and red forms but they all spread. Still, the seedlings pull up relatively easily, at least if you catch them early.

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  18. The seed pods are a cool addition! And I love the aptly named Hare's Tails!

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    1. That grass is wonderful, although it is a little bit thirsty, which is too bad.

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