Monday, April 25, 2016

In a Vase on Monday: Too much yellow?

Last week, I reported on an effort to adjust an excess of yellow color in my back garden.  It certainly seems that everything is coming up yellow right now, vases included.

This week the front and back views are nearly identical

Top view, dominated by the flat florets of Achillea 'Moonshine'


My original plan was to use purple Solanum xanti as my focal point and yellow touches as accents but, while the Solanum is flowering well, it can't match the yellow flowers in abundance, as a look at my garden demonstrates.

This bed contains Solanum xanti and Cotula lineariloba, among other things.  I tucked a few cuttings of Cotula in the bed late last summer, without even rooting them beforehand, not really expecting them to survive.  The plants spread quickly, crawling through and over everything in their path.

The Solanum self-seeds freely, tucking itself between the patio and Senecio vitalis here, but it isn't nearly as aggressive as the Cotula

And Achillea 'Moonshine' is currently dominating the back border


Without enough purple color to temper the screaming yellow, I looked for bright green foliage in an effort to achieve balance.  The grapevine planted along the fence with my neighbor to the north is also scrambling over everything in sight at the moment, so I took the clippers to it.

The arbor that my husband built to support the grapevine isn't sufficient to contain it.  It's already reaching into the persimmon trees planted on either side of it.  Yes, cutting the vines will reduce the grapes the vine produces but the birds, squirrels and raccoons usually take the grapes before they're ripe anyway.


Here are close-ups of what went into the vase:

Clockwise from the left: Achillea 'Moonshine', Abelia x grandiflora 'Hopley's', Cotula lineariloba 'Big Yellow Moon', grapevine foliage, and Solanum xanti


The yellow color is still dominant but the curves of the grapevine give the vase a graceful quality, rather like a woman wearing a flashy designer evening gown.

The vase sits on the dining room table


For the bedroom mantle, I sought out softer colors, stealing a little Dorycnium hirsutum (aka Hairy Canary Clover) from the bees as my starting point.  The clover's foliage feels like cashmere to the touch.


From the left, the vase contains" noID pink Alstroemeria, white and pink forms of Centranthus, and Dorycnium hirsutum

The finished vase on the bedroom mantle


I had floral and foliage leftovers from one of last week's vases and plants cut during my sojourn through the garden so I popped these into a third vase.

More yellow!

Clockwise from the upper left, this vase contains 'Alstroemeria 'Princess Claire' (left over from last week's vase), Abelia x grandiflora 'Hopley's', noID Antirrhinum, a noID sunflower seedling, Phlomis fruitcosa, and Trachelospermum jasminoides

This vase is heavy so I hope it'll withstand any wind gusts that blow through the front door.  I tucked my over-used ceramic frog away this week in favor of a ceramic mouse riding a butterfly, mainly to add a color other than yellow to the arrangement.


Visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden to see more flower and foliage arrangements.


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

38 comments:

  1. Lovely! Not too much yellow, it all looks so fresh and cheerful, but I have to confess I like the pink themed vase the best. www.daffodilwild.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The pink vase is easier to live with, I think, but I'm becoming very fond of those grapevine tendrils.

      Delete
  2. Oh the grapevines add a lovely touch! Years ago when I lived near my Grandma I loved to cut from her grapevine for use in a vase, then later in the fall branches made lovely casual wreaths.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I thought my husband might object to my cutting the grapevine for use in a vase but he agreed that there was no harm in using them given the near zero probability that there will be any grapes available for us to eat.

      Delete
  3. It is interesting to see the difference between the first two vases and how the yellow is tempered first by the purple and acid green and then secondly by the white - showing how to use any excess yellow! But yes, the pretty pink vase would still be easier to live with, I think! Thnaks for sharing

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do love yellow in the garden but even I'd admit I've gone a bit too far...

      Delete
  4. Now I thought that I was doing well with two vases this week Kris :) At one time I shied away from all flowers yellow but I'm more attracted to them as the years go by. My favourite has to be your most elegant yellow and white vase. Love your little mouse who has such a happy look on his face, obviously anticipating the joys of flying.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'd forgotten all about that mouse when he surfaced in a bout of closet cleaning, Anna. Luckily, I don't have any real mice to deal with in the garden - just squirrels, skunks and raccoons.

      Delete
  5. I love the third one, a graceful movement with the sprays of white flowers. I also have grapevine issues from years of battling Muscadines..never too much yellow!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I inherited 3 grapevines with the house and garden but pulled 2 as they were planted much too close together and were nearly impossible to control. As it is, I have difficulty managing the rambling of the one remaining specimen.

      Delete
  6. I love all three vases Kris, but I really adore the first one with the bright yellows and pale purple....a gorgeous collection both in your garden and vase!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Donna! The yellow vase was fun to construct, even if it didn't turn out as I'd originally envisioned.

      Delete
  7. Not too much yellow! In your path view, I like the way the diffuse yellow of the achillea is echoed in a little-bit-denser form at the turn of the path. Pretty!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Emily! The Achillea's gray foliage helps to tone down the bright color of the flowers in the garden. As the surrounding plants fill out, I'm hoping to achieve greater harmony.

      Delete
  8. I may be biased given all the yellow in my garden, but I love both your yellow vases. They are so cheerful!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yellow stands out well in our sunny climate, doesn't it? Pastels can look bleached out here.

      Delete
  9. Lovely, as usual. You already have your own style of flower arrangements, Kris!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad you liked them, Anca, although I'd give up all the yellow gold in my garden for the peonies you had in your vase this week.

      Delete
  10. I love the pink vase but the others are gorgeous too. I like how you've used the Phlomis, I keep looking at mine but I haven't come up with a way of using it yet, but you've inspired me to try.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Phlomis does have a Dr. Seuss-like flower but I'm sure you can find something in your beautiful spring garden to accompany it, Christina.

      Delete
  11. Definitely love those grape tendrils! And the idea of filling out the yellow with green... A very pretty trio of vases!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I had to do something to balance all that yellow, Amy!

      Delete
  12. The spring is defintely yellow, Donna, so no worries. It's such a welcome colour especially for us in Europe after the long winter. By the way your yellows are quite refreshing too. Love the first vase with the delicate tendrils reaching out from the vase - just perfection :) , Annette

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Annette. I can see how bright yellow would be a welcome sight after gray skies and snow.

      Delete
  13. I've tried to grow the yellow Achillea but didn't succeed. Yours glows, and the little Cotula flowers are so cute, I like the overhead view, Kris. I like the grape tendrils. I sympathize about the rampant grapes, mine turn into a jungle in the summer and grow up into trees if they can. We do get a lot of the purple variety though. But I'm still in plant lust for the fabulous Alstroemeria and the pink arrangement is so colorful, shocking pink, even, and I like the gray green owl clover with it. The white Alstroemerias are wonderful too, and the yellow curved petals of the Phlomis are great, like spider's legs. That's another plant I am growing, still waiting for it to bloom.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is a banner year for the Achillea 'Moonshine' here, Hannah, both in terms of the number of stems and their height. I'm not sure if that's attributable to the weather this year (unusually warm and overly dry) or simply the maturity of the plants. Other forms of Achillea here have been less productive.

      Delete
  14. Delightful to see the variety of flowers and foliage textures you have to work with and you always put together lovely and interesting arrangements.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My flower arranging skills don't hold a candle to yours, Susie, but thanks!

      Delete
  15. I LOVE all three vases you've made here, Kris. I rarely think one can have too much yellow, esp. if is more lemony than leaning towards orange, as it is so cheerful. I think A. Moonshine and the Phlomis are terrific. Very pretty and the mouse/monarch is darling!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. While I like orange, I prefer the pure yellows myself. The orange-y tones of the gold Gazanias I thinned out last week, which reminded me of taxi-cabs, were just too distracting.

      Delete
  16. The 3rd is my favorite with the diagonal form of the arrangement. Great work!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm surprised how many people liked that arrangement, Hoover Boo. The triangular shape was aided by the vase's own sloping, heart-shaped opening.

      Delete
  17. Love them all Kris! The first vase is so lovely with the whispy vine added to it, and the yellows are very sunny and cheerful. :) Does your pink centranthus flower for a long time or a second time? Here it starts flowering in June, and then if I prune it all through the summer. (Your mouse and butterfly are cute!)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Centranthus do branch out if I cut them back and I try to do that before they cast seed hither and yon, Cathy - for all practical purposes, the plants are weeds here.

      Delete
  18. My love affair with yellows in the garden is an ever changing one. I find here that matching those yellows quite tricky but given your glorious sunshine any yellow works I think.
    Nice displays you've put together Kris. A shame about the critters snatching your fruit, still to your benefit since it allows you to enjoy the foliage indoors.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In my first several years here, I saw the critters and myself as engaged in a battle over the garden's bounty - a battle that I consistently lost. My new viewpoint is that I'm supporting nature's creatures and, if they leave anything for my husband and me, that's good of them.

      Delete
  19. Yellow is a cheerful and happy color. Your arrangements reflect that upbeat feeling. The softer pink arrangement is also gorgeous!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We all can use a healthy dose of happy colors in our lives.

      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.