Monday, June 22, 2015

In a Vase on Monday: Orchids Demand Center Stage

Although last week's heat made it impossible to deny that summer has arrived, there's still a lot in bloom, even if some flowers are starting to look a little worse for the wear.  Agapanthus were the most obvious choice for this week's vase but I couldn't think of anything inspiring to do with them.  Instead I fixated on the yellow Cymbidiums that sit in pots in a neglected area of my garden.  Their foliage is scorched so I haven't hauled the pots close to the house where the flowers could be admired.  Cutting stems for a vase seemed the obvious solution; however, selecting flowers to complement them presents a challenge.  I cut other flowers and foliage with similar colors but, in the end, I used just a single foliage element to accompany the orchids - they don't like to share center stage.


Don't the Cymbidiums look as though they're laughing at the very idea they'd consort with other flowers?

Leptospermum 'Copper Glow', a plant that can add grace to any vase


The rest of what I'd cut, plus some ornamental grass, went into a second vase.  A photo of the 2 bouquets together shows their incompatibility.

You can almost see the vase on the left emanating disdain for the one on the right

The second vase contains (clockwise from upper left): Gaillardia x grandiflora 'Goblin' and 'Arizona Sun', Leucadendron 'Blush', Leucadendron 'Chief', and Pennisetuma setaceum 'Rubrum' with Jacobaeus maritima


The Cymbidiums landed in the front entryway and the second vase took a place on the console table in the dining area.




Visit Cathy, the host of the "In a Vase on Monday" meme, at Rambling in the Garden to see what she's come up with this week and to find links to other contributors' creations.


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

32 comments:

  1. Kris I am so envious that you can grow orchids like this there and cut them for a vase....and yes the Cymbidiums seem to be laughing although beautiful against the Leptospermum 'Copper Glow'. The second vase is beautiful too. My native Gaillardia are blooming too and I soon hope to have some other plants that can accompany them in a vase...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love Gaillardia and look forward to seeing your native variety in future vases. 'Goblin and 'Arizona Sun' seem to self-seed freely here - I'm hoping the peach and apricot varieties will as well.

      Delete
  2. Slightly more restrained arrangement this week Kris but just as showy and fab as ever!

    ReplyDelete
  3. The orchids do make a very elegant vase, and the burgundy color and framing of the Leptospermum accents them beautifully. Cute frog. The Gaillardias are very vibrant and look great with the grass plumes. I finally have a bud coming on Gaillardia 'Tokajer' so I'm excited to finally have some Gaillardia flowers. My vase you commented on is a tall curvy teapot my daughter made, I'll have to show it off better sometime.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I mail-ordered Gaillardia 'Tokajer' years ago after becoming enamored with its photo in a catalog. It wasn't as hardy as the other varieties in my garden but that may have been my fault in choosing where to plant it.

      Delete
  4. Right, orchids do not like to share central stage and yours are simply beautiful! We do not grow orchids here, we only buy them in pots from florists. Have a good week, Kris!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cymbidiums are particularly easy to grow here, Anca (although most of mine could use dividing and repotting).

      Delete
  5. The thought of orchids growing in the garden is so wonderfully exotic Kris, and they certainly do need a vase to themselves simply to honour their beauty and uniqueness. Love the second vase just as much though! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cymbidiums are surprisingly easy to grow here, Cathy, especially as we very seldom get winter freezes.

      Delete
  6. Dear Kris, love your orchid vase! I have made the same experience: Orchids just demand full attention in the vase and don't tolerate any additional flowers. I am very surprised that you have cymbidium orchids blooming at this time of the year, though. Mine are long done and won't consider to bloom in this heat.
    Warm regards,
    Christina

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was surprised when I found 2 pots with blooms too, Christina, but I vaguely remember that these bloomed in summer before. I have another, larger flowered variety that bloomed in winter.

      Delete
  7. Oh to be able to grow orchids in your garden Kris. I'm green with envy. They make for a most elegant vase with just the one companion. As you suggest they are prima donnas :) I like your second vase too. The pennisetum sets off the flowers so well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are pluses to having a frost-free garden, Anna. The negatives are summer heat and minimal rain.

      Delete
  8. thanks for showing me flowers to use for the vase that I had never thought of before!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I probably wouldn't cut the orchids had the foliage been in better shape, Bec. The flowers have a relatively long vase life but they last longer still on the plant.

      Delete
  9. Those orchids deserve center stage, Kris! The leptospermum foliage was the perfect combination... It's interesting how well it combines in both vases.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those Leptospermum were a tremendous find. I only hope they don't grow too much bigger but maybe cutting stems periodically for vases will help keep them to a reasonable size.

      Delete
  10. Haha! I'm so amused at the idea that the orchids are disdainful of the Gaillardia. Love your sense of humor.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those orchid blossoms don't look like laughing faces to you?!

      Delete
  11. Excellent combos and a very fun post to read.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Great vase you have put together, love it!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Those Cymbidiums know just how pretty they are, don't they. Great that you're able to grow them. Both vases are lovely. I enjoy seeing your never-ending supply of interesting blooms.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. With summer starting to sizzle, the supply of flowers may dwindle in the coming weeks, Susie - we'll see.

      Delete
  14. Are not sure if you have a birthday or to do it soon, wish you a good birthday
    You have trouble to keep your promise on zero planting:)
    Mariana

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My birthday is behind me for another year, Mariana - it's just the celebrations that get strung out. In my case, apparently patience and discretion don't come with age (at least not when it comes to the garden).

      Delete
  15. Wow! Orchids as cut flowers from your garden, whatever next? Gorgeous.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If I were more attentive to the needs of my Cymbidiums (i.e. repotted them as needed and kept them out of the sun that scorches their foliage), you probably wouldn't find me cutting their stems, Chloris.

      Delete
  16. You are quite right about the look of disdain, Kris! The leptospermum picks up the spotty part of the orchids perfectly and contributes to a vase that is a cut above the rest. Very lovely...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I remembered that I'd used Cymbidiums in an earlier vase, Cathy, back in mid-February. However, those orchids didn't smirk the way this group did.

      Delete

I enjoy receiving your comments and suggestions. However, with apologies to bona-fide commentators, due to a significant increase in spam, I've eliminated the option to post comments anonymously.