Monday, February 22, 2016

In a Vase on Monday: Keeping things simple

In my last "In a Vase on Monday" post, I commented that African daisies don't make great vase material because many of the flowers close in low light.  After that pronouncement, I couldn't help wondering if Gazania 'Sunbathers Otomi' wouldn't fare better given its ruffled center disk.  Late last week, as I made what's become my weekly spin through my local garden center, I came across a new edition of another favorite African daisy, Osteospermum '3D Silver'.  The new release was labeled '4D Silver' and its tag declared that it doesn't close at night.  Like G. 'Otomi', '4D Silver' has a dense central disk.  With that point in mind, I decided I was going to try 'Otomi' in a vase.

Gazania 'Sunbathers Otomi' in my garden, as shown in my February Bloom Day post


While I considered a variety of flowers to accent the Gazanias, I ended up keeping the arrangement simple with just 3 ingredients.

Completed arrangement in my sunny kitchen

The ingredients include: Coprosma repens 'Plum Hussey' (recycled from last week's vase), Gazania 'Sunbathers Otomi', and Ribes viburnifolium (aka Catalina perfume currant)


So far, so good.  The outer flower petals do curl up some as the light level drops but the flowers don't close completely as my other Gazanias do.

On the left, the vase on the east-facing dining room table in late morning; on the right, the vase in the late afternoon with the east side of the house already in shadow


Did I stop at one vase this week?  No, of course not.  The garden is literally full of flowers and I'd already cut some others with the prospect of including them in the vase with the Gazanias.  However, I kept each of my vases simple this week.

Vase #2 has just 2 elements.

I couldn't ignore the yellow Freesia in bloom in several areas of the garden but I decided that it would overwhelm vase #1 and detract from the Gazanias

This small vase includes just Freesia and the flowers of the succulent, Graptopetalum 'Darley Sunshine'

It sits next to my computer where I can enjoy the Freesia's perfume


Vase #3 may be my favorite this week.  It sings that spring is in the air (even if our temperatures are headed into summer-like territory again this week).

A Narcissus I planted our first year in this house began to open just after Bloom Day

This vase includes Erysimum linifolium 'Variegatum', Lantana montevidensis, and the noID Narcissus

I would have placed this vase in the front entryway but our Santa Ana winds are scheduled to return today and I've already lost 2 of my lighter-weight vases to brisk winds sweeping through the front door so this one sits safely on the bedroom mantle


As for my future vases, you can expect to see that Osteospermum I mentioned at the top of my post.  I didn't leave it sitting in the garden center.

3 Osteospermum '4D Silver' in 6-inch pots came home with me


Visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden to see what she and other bloggers have put together with materials on hand this week.


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

36 comments:

  1. I love when you make several vases with all these glorious flowers. I agree the last one sings spring! Makes me smile!!

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    1. Spring is just around the corner for you too, Donna!

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  2. My goodness Kris - they all be essentially 'simple' but that doesn't stop them being stunning! Perfect examples of how to bring joy with just a few blooms. Thanks you so much for sharing them all - and for the info on the osteospermum. I wonder if they are available in the UK ... not that I would be buying them this year, with my plant embargo!

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    1. I forgot about your plant embargo, Cathy. Still, having seen photos of your well-stocked greenhouse, I don't think you're going to be at a disadvantage this year!

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  3. More restrained but just as fabulous as all your previous ones!

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    1. Thanks guys! I'm glad to see your posts again!

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  4. Dear Kris, I really love all of your three vases today, I can't pick a favorite! I like that you kept the first two vases simple, as I feel it suits the flowers the best, so that they are not overpowered by other competing blooms.
    I love, love, love your new Osteospermum '4D Silver'! I have to see if I can find it here in the local nurseries as well.
    Wishing you a nice week!
    Christina

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    1. Last week was my first sighting of that Osteospermum, Christina, and I've been stalking my local garden center on a weekly basis so I wouldn't be surprised if you see the plant surface in your area soon. I really liked '3D Silver' so I'm looking forward to seeing how '4D' does.

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  5. Lovely, your Grevilla post appeared on Florida Gardening Friends this week! Someone has a Peaches and Cream in their garden. I must find one. All the vases are lovely, I am amazed at the range of plant material you can grow in your garden.

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    1. Grevillea 'Peaches & Cream' was hard to find for quite awhile but the plants have been more commonly available here in the past 6 months or so, even occasionally in 1-gallon sizes. I hope you can locate it. Grevillea 'Superb' is another beautiful large-flowered variety.

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  6. What a wealth of choices! I particularly like the way the succulent echoes the shape of the Freesia. And what a perfect location you have given it. As I sit at my computer I can just imagine what it smells like at your computer!

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    1. With just 2 stems of Freesia, my office smells heavenly, Linda!

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  7. Good for you for bringing home that lovely Osteospermum. Your vases are all so effective. I especially love the raspberry coloring of the first vase.

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    1. I wasn't sure about using the tiny-flowered Ribes in the first vase but I think it picks up the brighter tones in the lower petals of the Gazania.

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  8. That Osteospermum is pretty cool! I might have to keep an eye out for it in the annual sections up here.

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    1. The Osteospermum is a short-lived perennial here, Evan, but I realize it may not tolerate your colder winter temperatures. It seems to handle summer heat in stride, although flower-production generally shuts down until cooler temperatures return.

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  9. Three lovely vases again, Kris, I can't seem to pick between them. The Gazania 'Otomi' is so lovely, it looks a lot like a fancy Echinacea I bought that didn't live through the winter. The Ribes flowers pick up the color so well, and I like the glossy leaves. The Freesias are incredibly buttery yellow, I wish I could smell their fragrance through the screen. The buds have such an interesting candelabra effect, complimented by the shape and delicate yellow and pink of the Graptopetalum. And the last vase, I love lantana, it goes so well with the narcissus and variegated leaves. Great flowers, Kris!

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    1. Thanks Hannah. With our recent spike in temperatures, there's a lot to choose from in the garden right now (although that doesn't stop me from mourning the shortage of rain).

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  10. Excellent choices Kris, I love them all...and now I am going to fall asleep dreaming of the lovely Freesia scent...

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    1. I do love Freesia. Every year I wonder why I don't have it planted everywhere. Maybe next year!

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  11. Simple but beautiful. I did have to laugh at '4D Silver' as a plant name. Will it be '5D silver' next year?

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    1. I laughed at the '4D' when I saw it on the tag too. I assumed that the plant's growers were seeing the plant's nighttime bloom aspect as its 4th dimension and using the name to underscore their tweak to '3D's' biology. However, if you run an on-line search on "4th dimension," it turns out that there are all sorts of theories about a 4th dimension with a space-time component and that physicists posit 10 dimensions. Now the question is: were the growers aware of that angle when they chose the name? My husband is a physicist so I may bring up the subject with him but I expect the answer will either be a roll of his eyes or something that will make my own eyes cross.

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  12. Three for three! You do this vase thing so well, Kris and they must bring you a lot of joy when you pass them through the week!

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    1. My arrangements are more on the order of plonking than art, Peter, but I do enjoy having flowers nearby, wherever I am.

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  13. The little vase of freesias is my favorite of these. Such a wonderful shade of yellow, and I can almost smell those flowers 3000 miles away. :-) -Jean

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    1. Nothing much can beat a Freesia for scent, Jean. It amazes me that 2 stems are enough to perfume an entire room.

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  14. I smiled when I saw your Freesia, the first one of my native freesia opened a bud this morning. The others in the greenhouse have buds but they remain tightly closed which just shows how much warmer it is in LA. I like the simplicity of the vases this week, sometimes less really is more.

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    1. This may be our warmest February on record, Christina - as well as our least rainy one.

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  15. I couldn't possibly pick a favourite this week Kris - they are all so lovely and also quite different. The Freesias must smell wonderful - one of my favourites which I enjoyed in my (florist's) Valentines bouquet this year. I love those blue Osteospermum and look forward to seeing them in a vase one day too... I often buy one for a summer pot here, but they are a bit temperamental if we have a cool rainy period!

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    1. A "cool rainy period" sounds lovely to me, Cathy! Here, Osteospermums do better during our cooler season than in summer, when they usually shut down flower production to wait out the heat.

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  16. I just love your new Osteospermum Kris -- you do find the prettiest varieties! That's great to know about the types that can stay open when cut. All three vases are beautiful, and I like the combination of freesias and graptopetalum flowers in particular...

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    1. Freesias and some of the other South African bulbs would probably do well in your climate too, Amy.

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  17. I think vase #3 may be my favorite also! The soft yellow and purple go so well with the white narcissus and I love the form of the arrangement too.

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    1. That one is still sitting on the bedroom mantle, long past its prime. I may have to replace it with a duplicate.

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