Monday, February 8, 2016

In a Vase on Monday: Coral Color!

We're in the middle of a winter heatwave.  Just over a week ago, our daytime temperatures were barely reaching 60F (15.5C) and now, courtesy of our Santa Ana winds, they're soaring well above 80F (27C).  Worse yet, there's no rain in sight and our humidity level is near zero.  Still, the flowering plants have responded to the added warmth and blooms are appearing everywhere.  My Grevillea 'Superb' is blooming as heavily as the 'Peaches & Cream' I featured in a vase in mid-January.

Grevillea 'Superb' photographed last week in the front garden


The Grevillea was a natural choice for this week's "In a Vase on Monday," the meme hosted by Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.

Front view

Back view

Top view


Here's a closer look at the individual elements:

Clockwise from upper left: Grevillea 'Superb'; Leucadendron 'Wilson's Wonder', now showing its full winter colors; 3 coral-toned Iceland poppies (Papaver nudicaule); Coleonema album, just beginning its annual bloom cycle; a few stems of Leptospermum 'Copper Glow'; and Pelargonium x hortorum 'Mrs. Pollock'


The wind has also been hard on the last of the two poinsettias I used to create holiday-themed pots to stand outside the front door in mid-December.

This vignette was my entry into the "Poinsettia Challenge" sponsored by Loree of danger garden last December


It was time to put away the gnome, the final remnant of my holiday decorations, and change out the contents of the pots by the front door.  However, as there were a few nice "blooms" still left on poinsettia, I decided to put them in a vase before retiring the remains of the plant.

This poinsettia (Euphorbia pulcherrima) didn't start to deteriorate significantly until about a week ago, although the variegated form I planted began to fall apart in mid-January


By pure coincidence, both vases this week offer lots of coral color.

The arrangement containing the Grevilleas ended up on the dining room table

The 3 poinsettia stems, after scalding in hot water, sit in the front entry


Visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden to find what she and other gardeners have cobbled together from what they have on hand this week.


All material © 2012-2016 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

42 comments:

  1. Wow you can't win with the temps and dry weather Kris. But that vase is stunning. I especially love the addition of the Pelargonium foliage...it makes quite a statement with the colors especially the coral. And oh the poinsettias are still growing. Lovely in a vase too!

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    1. The poinsettias WERE still growing. I dispatched the last holiday poinsettia when I cut its stems for my vase, after briefly considering whether it was worth trying to baby it along in the garden. My neighbor has a red poinsettia that's probably 7 feet tall planted by her back door but I doubt my hybrid form is half as hardy.

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  2. I love the Grevillea vase!!! So many of my favorite things. I am always tempted by that Pelargonium foliage, the colors are just perfection.

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    1. Unfortunately, the particular Pelargonium seems prone to rust on the underside of its leaves but I'm hoping that, once we move into the drier period of late spring and summer, that'll clear up (not that it's been all that wet this winter!).

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  3. Lovely arrangement, Kris! I really like the coral poppies together with the pelargonium 'Mrs. Pollock'. The complexity of the grevillea blooms is quite fascinating.
    I wouldn't have considered poinsettias as cut flowers, but they fulfill that job quite well. It is good that you have been able to think out of box!
    Warm regards,
    Christina

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    1. I probably wouldn't have thought of cutting the poinsettia stems if I hadn't seen other bloggers do it, Christina. It did seem a shame to toss those 3 remaining stems out with the plant. I was worried about that nasty white sap the cut Euphorbia stems produce but scalding them in hot water took care of that problem.

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  4. Oh look at all those coral tones, Kris - what a delightful collection of co-ordinated blooms. As always you have such a good eye - thanks for sharing

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  5. That grevillea is beautiful both in the garden and in the vase!

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  6. Wilson's Wonder is a spectacular beauty.

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    1. It's definitely on my top 10 list of favorite plants, Diana. It's beautiful in winter with its yellow "flowers" and equally impressive in mid-summer when the stems turn a fiery red.

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  7. Your vases are always rich in color and texture and this is no exception. Lovely grevillea. The Leucadendron is lovely fully open.

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    1. That Grevillea and that Leucadendron are 2 of my favorite plants, Susie.

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  8. Gorgeous, thought you had some Proteas in there! Leucadendrons are unknown to me. Are those Acorus in with the Poinsettias?

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    1. Leucadendron is in the Protea family, ShrubQueen. Yes, I had Acorus, Coprosma and Aeonium in the original pot with the poinsettia. I moved the Acorus to another container, although they struggle here as they need more water than we usually have to give.

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  9. I'm sorry to hear that you've been getting hot, dry Santa Ana winds rather than El Nino rain. California needs this good year of rain (and then a few more to follow). At least there is some snow in the mountains to provide spring run-off. -Jean

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    1. The good news is that, unlike SoCal, NorCal is getting above average rain plus snow, which should help make a dent in California's drought. The bad news is that I was rather counting on the extra rain forecast to accompany El Nino in SoCal to help the new plants purchased after removal of my lawn get established.

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  10. such pretty and color-coordinated vases! I love the combo of Grevillea 'Superb' and Leucadendron 'Wilson's Wonder'. And that you're brave enough to cut them and bring them into the house!

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    1. It helps that there are currently a lot of both to be had, Renee. That, and the withering Santa Ana winds, convinced me to go ahead and cut some.

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  11. I haven't seen Icelandic poppies that color before. They are beautiful!

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    1. That coral Iceland poppy is my favorite but it was surprising to have 3 in bloom in that color at once - most of my blooms are usually orange or yellow.

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  12. Your weather sounds on the wild side, Kris! We're warming up too, but at least the winds have died down, so things aren't taking such a beating now... Hope that Santa Ana calms down too!
    Your leucodendron is such a beauty and sets off all the coral colors so well. And the combination of grevillea and Iceland poppy is magical! Glad you were able to salvage the poinsettia blooms as well. I'd love to grow some outdoors as they are sentimental plants for me, but I doubt they'd bloom as we use our exterior lights off and on through the evenings...

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    1. Poinsettia might well have more difficulty with your colder nighttime temperatures in winter too, Amy. I'm surprised at how well my neighbor's red poinsettia does but maybe it's in the perfect spot protected from winds and snug against the house where it can take advantage of the added warmth.

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  13. I'm so sorry that the rain you were hoping for this winter hasn't arrived; the Santa Anna winds sound terrible, we have hot wind in summer from the sea which do a lot of damage in the garden, my planting at the top of the slope is to protect the garden from the wind as much as possible. In winter the wind usually comes from the north and is icy! Love your vases this week.

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    1. The lack of rain is a major disappointment, Christina. I said I would believe it when I saw it, yet I got caught up in the hype that claimed it was a virtual certainty. Today's LA Times has a story on the front page about our MIA El Nino. The current claim is that the El Nino is so big that, contrary to expectations, its strength has pushed it northward, benefiting northern California rather than SoCal. The forecasters now contend that, as the conditions in the Pacific weaken, it may yet deliver rain to us in March and April. I'm trying not to get my hopes up, however.

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  14. Heat wave, I wish, Kris! It's nice to be surrounded by all that lush vegetation and to be able to go out and pick such a wealth of plants. Beautiful arrangement which got me dreaming :), Annette from Annette's Garden (No comment possible with wordpress account)

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    1. As I exited an over-air conditioned restaurant after lunch today, the warmth was pleasant, Annette - but only for as long as it took for me to defrost. It's ridiculously hot for early February. One thermometer I passed on the road read 93F (34C) and the humidity is so low you can almost feel your skin stretching taut.

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  15. Your 'Superb' Grevillea lives up to its name, your flowers have me looking up hardiness on the Grevilleas, it is tempting to see if some could make it here, though there are the infrequent hard cold snaps. The flowers are marvelous with the Leucadendrons and poppies. I like your ripply peachy poinsettias, they are hanging in there well, Kris.

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    1. Most of the Grevillea seem to tolerate temperatures between 20 and 25F according to published specs but I have no experience in that area to offer. Loree of danger garden (Portland) grows some in her garden but I don't recall whether she hauls them under cover in winter.

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  16. I love all your coral tones and the Grevillea is absolutely scrumptious.
    The idea of heat like that is wonderful to us here at the moment, on our wind and rain lashed island.

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    1. The temperatures in the low 70sF were comfortable, Chloris, but when they soared to 93F (34C) this afternoon it was decidedly less pleasant, especially when the humidity is so low you feel as though you're undergoing mummification.

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  17. So lovely...I've lost my Grevillea this year...but really without a greenhouse, I was being over optimistic. I shall content myself with admiring yours!

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    1. That's too bad, Noelle, but I fully understand and appreciate the inclination to test the limits of your climate!

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  18. Gorgeous vase this week, Kris (again!). Love those poppies - what a rich color. 80 seems like a wild dream to me as my reality is 20s. :-) Super bitter this weekend -8 predicted! I won't complain, we've had a really mild winter and I know it may sound crazy to you, but I've been enjoying my brisk walks - it started flurrying on my afternoon walk today and it was magical - still and lovely. I do love visiting your garden every week however! ;-)

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    1. The photos certainly make the snow look magical!

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  19. I love all the different plants in your vase this week Kris, and am particularly impressed with how well your Poinsettia has fared. It's a lovely colour too. Do you often get such heat at this time of year? It is hard for me to imagine it ever getting warm again here right now! ;-)

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    1. Actually, up until last week, this winter has been cold here relative to the prior 2 or 3 years. This heat spell seems longer and more intense than the warm spells in other years but perhaps that's just my imagination, although the news reports state that we're breaking records on temperature readings. It's also unusually dry, even for us!

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