Monday, June 6, 2016

In a Vase on Monday: The Vessel Sets the Scene

My husband bought me a new vase on our recent visit to the Huntington Botanical Gardens and, as I wanted to see what I could do with it, the vessel determined the choice of flowers this week rather than vice versa.

The new "standing leaf" vase is about 8 inches tall and wide but has a narrow profile


I looked for plants that would complement the vase but not eclipse it.

Front view of new vase with lilies taking center stage

I couldn't bring myself to cut another lily stem to adorn the back view so simple daisies had to do

Top view


I'd been hoping that my Eustoma grandiflorum (aka Lisianthus) would be ready for picking but they've been slow to bloom this year.  They're close but not quite there.

The columnar-shaped plants shown scattered about in the left-hand photo are all Eustoma planted in 2015 or 2014.  The photo on the right shows buds just about ready to bloom.  Most of the plugs planted this year also have buds but the plants don't look nearly as vigorous as the returnees.


The noID pink lilies were my second choice.  I received 3 bulbs with a purchase of other bulbs a few years ago and, while the beautiful 'Stargazer' lilies I planted shortly after we moved in have long since died out, these continue to return.

The lilies aren't scented or flashy and I generally think they look better in the garden than highlighted in a vase


I selected just 3 other plants to accompany the lilies:

Clockwise from the left, the vase contains: noID lilies, Helichrysum petiolare (probably 'Silver Mist'), Leucadendron salignum 'Chief', and Tanacetum niveum


As I wandered my garden in search of companions for the lilies, I'd cut a number of other plants on spec as well.  Although I'd planned to construct a second vase of Achillea 'Moonshine' and Leucanthemum x superbum as both are available in quantity right now, my leftover cuttings pushed me in another color direction.

After all, there's also a large supply of Agapanthus in the garden

Clockwise from upper left, the second vase contains: noID Agapanthus, Cuphea ignea 'Starfire Pink", Heteromeles arbutifolia (aka Toyon), noID lavender (probably Lavandula angustifolia), Origanum 'Monterey Bay', and Tanacetum niveum


As the winds are up again and I'm wary about having my new porcelain vase take flight in the front entry (as 2 other vases have previously done), I placed it on the dining room table.



And the larger, heavier blue vase was placed in the front entry.




For more vases, visit Cathy of Rambling in the Garden, the host of "In a Vase on Monday."


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

34 comments:

  1. Both vases are lovely, your gift was very well chosen. We both have lilies in our vases today. The second vase with Agapanthus isfabulous, I love seeing them either in the garden or in a vase. The lavender has very large flowers much more showy than mine in the garden, yours is a much better candidate for a vase.

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    1. It's amazing how well respected Agapanthus are outside of Southern California. As the plant is so widely used here for everything from street medians to housing development foundation plantings, the plant doesn't get the respect it deserves.

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  2. Your new standing leaf vase is beautiful, what a wonderful and thoughtful gift! Both arrangements turned out spectacular.

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    1. I doubt my husband would have selected the vase without a green-light from me but it meant a lot that he insisted on getting something more exciting than the watering hoses he'd already purchased for my birthday.

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  3. What a unique and beautiful vase!!

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  4. After your last post, I was wondering what your new vase looked like. It's spectacular! Although more angular, it has a clear art nouveau influence, which is my favorite design style.

    One of these days, I'm going to sit down and google all your plants, one by one, to see if any would work here. This past year's experiment was with agapanthus, which was another no-go. So frustrating!

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    1. It's too bad the Agapanthus didn't work for you. Off-hand, I'd have expected we have fairly similar climates.

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    2. I think it's the wind chill. We are at 2200 ft, and the wind can be fierce here in the winter.

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    3. I guessed the difference might be cold related. We're at just over 700 feet above sea level and we haven't been anywhere near freezing since we moved here.

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  5. That leaf vase is a real find - so different, and I trust it has proved practical today? The contents are so beautiful balanced, as they always are in your vases. And a ready supply of agapanthus... I wish!! I wish for the eustoma too, as I tried from seed without success ;)

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    1. I tried growing Eustoma/Lisianthus from seed once too, Cathy. I also failed. It doesn't germinate easily. All this year's new plants are plugs, some purchased from a mail order grower and others from my local garden center.

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  6. Kris what a wonderful gift from a wonderful husband....it is stunning without flowers...and you out did yourself with the lily. And you know I love Agapanthus....so the blue one brought a huge smile to my face!

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    1. There's a faint touch of pink in the vase so I wanted something to pick that color up and, although I seemed to have plenty of pink earlier in the year, that isn't true now. Of course, assuming that the Eustomas don't wither in bud, I should have plenty of pink in the coming months.

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  7. What an interesting new vase Kris. I like that narrow profile. It must be fun to work with and looks very stable. Your flower choices for it were spot on. And I love that agapanthus arrangement too.

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    1. I've another narrow vase but it doesn't hold much water so it needs constant attention. This one has a larger reservoir and is more practical (I think).

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  8. Wow that is one pretty vase, and your arrangement lives up to it. Great bouquets, as always!

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    1. The Huntington's gift shop, like the gardens, is very impressive!

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  9. well I have to say that vase is fabulous.

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  10. I love your new vase! I'd planned to ask if he picked it out himself, but after reading your reply to Alison I don't need to. You really rose to the challenge of the unique shape of the new vase, well done!

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    1. I was drawn to that vase almost the moment we walked into the gift shop but put it back on the shelf after looking at the price, which is when he offered to buy me a vase for my birthday. We checked out all the Huntington had but came back to that one. It was made by ceramicists in Oregon who specialize in botanical forms.

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  11. Perfect match vase-flowers!Have a great week, Kris!

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  12. That first vase is absolutely stunning Kris! You have used such pretty flowers to echo the shape and colours beautifully. :)

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    1. That vase did pose some challenges. I didn't want the flowers to eclipse it but they also needed to be able to hold their own in the mix.

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  13. Whoa daddy, that's a great new vase! You did an excellent of balancing that fabulous vase with flowers that compliment it. Both of your vases are stunning as always but your first is an inspiration about how to use those vases that make such a statement on their own.

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    1. Perhaps when the vase is no longer new, I'll be less concerned with giving it billing in the picture but, this round, it was more the star of the show than its contents.

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  14. Lovely new vase for you this week,too. What a sweet hubbie you have. :)
    Both vases are lovely per usual. I like the tanacetum (I fall for daisies every time) and the agapanthus. I wish I could grow cuphea outside - yours looks lovely!

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    1. My husband is a very sweet guy. We've been together since our freshman year of college. I think I'll probably keep him.

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  15. I love your new vase! I particularly like the photo with the daisies gently cascading down it.

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    1. Everything is better with daisies in my view, Sarah!

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  16. That's just lovely, Kris - the new vase and flowers complement each other so well! The daisies are perfect too :)
    I think it's interesting the Asiatic-type(?) lily has lasted in the garden better than Stargazer. I love lilies and would like to find some type that would grow here... probably not very likely!
    Love the blue arrangement too!

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    1. Denise of "A Growing Obsession" has had success growing lilies in containers, which might work for you, Amy. I may try that approach myself next year.

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