Monday, November 21, 2016

In a Vase on Monday: Fleeting Blooms

The big news from my corner of the world is: WE GOT RAIN!  Honest-to-goodness rain, not Mother Nature's spit, which is all we've had of late.  I know that those of you in wetter climates may be rolling your eyes but this is a big deal here.

According to my little weather station, we got almost two-thirds of an inch of rain from yesterday's system.  I captured what I could off the rain chain and in the 3 rain barrels connected to our roof gutters.


Even though rain was predicted, it's hard to put any faith in forecasts when one after another fails to materialize.  I'd planned to spend Sunday in the garden planting recent purchases but, when the skies became auspiciously gloomy, I decided I'd better cut some flowers for "In a Vase on Monday" just in case the forecasts proved accurate for once.

I fixated on 2 flowers that appear only briefly in the garden.  The first is Hypoestes aristata, also known as ribbon bush.  I grew this plant in my old garden, where it was a vigorous fall performer.  I kicked myself for failing to bring cuttings with me when we moved as it took me years to find the plant afterwards.   When I located a mail order source last year, I planted 3 tiny shrubs, only one of which survived the sunnier, hotter and drier conditions of my current garden.  My remaining plant is still small and has only a few blooms but I cut a single stem and then went looking for other plants to complement it.

The ribbon bush stem on the left was eclipsed by the last of the cherry-colored Eustoma grandiflorum (Lisianthus)

Back view

Top view

Clockwise from the left, the vase contains: Eustoma grandiflorum, Gomphrena globosa 'Fireworks', Gomphrena decumbens 'Itsy Bitsy', Hypoestes aristata, Leucanthemum x superbum, Polygala myrtifolia 'Mariposa', and Pseuderanthemum 'Texas Tri-star'


The other flowering plant I couldn't ignore this week is Callistemon 'Cane's Hybrid'.  This shrub, planted in March 2015, produces periodic flushes of bloom but the flowers disappear almost as soon as I notice them.  I clipped 3 stems and took another spin through the garden seeking suitable companions.

I had a harder time finding flowers to combine with the pale coral-pink blooms of the Callistemon than I had finding matches for the blooms of the pinkish-lavender Hypoestes

Back view

Top view

Clockwise from the upper left, the vase contains: Callistemon 'Cane's Hybrid', Abelia 'Kaleidoscope', Coprosma repens 'Evening Glow', Grevillea 'Superb', Leptospermum 'Copper Glow', and Nandina domestica (berries and foliage)


The vases found their places.  For more vases, visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden, our host for "In a Vase on Monday."



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



34 comments:

  1. So happy for you that you had a good rain. I understand your enthusiasm as it's quite dry here also with terrible wildfires to our west. Could smell the smoke from the fires on Friday though many miles away. Great arrangements as always and interesting plants. I'd like to have more shrubs that flower. The Callistemon is a beautiful pink/

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    1. I'm sorry to hear that you're dealing with fires as well as dry conditions, Susie. While smoke from neighbors' chimneys add a nice seasonal tang to the air, I know too well how awful the pervasive smell of wildfires can be - I hope they're quickly extinguished.

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  2. Hooray. Definitely not rolling my eyes. Even in a climate like mine with regular rain fall, we have periods of dry. Although not as bad as you all have experienced, but I sympathize! Happy for you. Beautiful colors in your bouquets.

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    1. Thanks, Tim. I'm still on a rainwater high.

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  3. Yes, and although we have had over 1" of rain today I know from your posts that it is needed far more in your garden than ours!! Enjoy the results! Your first vase in particularly is absolutely gorgeous - the various deep pink shades work so well together, aided and abetted by the foliage.

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    1. Yes, it was the Pseuderanthemum foliage that called for the addition of the deep pink Eustoma, which I hadn't planned on cutting. Unfortunately, that foliage doesn't usually hold up well in a vase but I conditioned the stems this time to see if that'll make a difference.

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  4. So glad for you to have some real rain. As usual you have such a lovely selection of gorgeous flowers. I love them both, but I particularly loved the sunset shades of the second one.

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    1. The foliage in the second vase almost stole the show I thought - the Coprosma's cultivar name is well-earned.

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  5. Yay, it rained! we are in our dry season here and it hasn't rained in weeks. Irrigation is great but there is nothing like the real thing for your garden.
    I love the pink arrangement, but I also love the Callistemon which is practically illegal here. (Considered invasive)

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    1. It's probably too dry for Callistemon to run wild here, thankfully. I've never much like the red-flowered bottle brush, probably because every other house on the block where I grew up had at least one, but I love everything about 'Cane's Hybrid'.

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  6. As usual, your vases have the most beautiful flowers ever!

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  7. You always make the best bouquets. Glad you got some actual rain and I love the rain chain.

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    1. It's amazing how much rainwater pours down that chain, Linda. When the rain is coming down at even a moderate rate, I can fill a large plastic trug with water within 3 minutes. I could use another large rain barrel on that side of the house but putting one right in front of the dining room window doesn't work!

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  8. SO glad you got rain! I bet your garden is just sighing with pleasure.
    Both arrangements are lovely! The Callistemon is such a pretty soft pink. It looks like it would go fast - a day or so for each tier. Love the nandina berries. If I could have one in this climate, I would in a heartbeat.
    Love the eustoma - those swirled flowers with the Itsy Bitsy gomphrena compliment so well.

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    1. Everything got a good soaking, Eliza, which hasn't been something I could say for quite some time. I was also able to turn off the irrigation system, at least for one cycle. I'm giving Mother Nature my heartfelt thanks and hope she'll send more rain soon.

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  9. We got almost 4 inches in October and another inch and a half so far this month. Our normal is between 25 and 30 inches so we are off t a good start-most of our rain is in Jan and Feb in normal years. Though who knows what is normal anymore ? In any case, so glad you got the real deal for a change and got to accumulate in your tanks.

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    1. Our "normal" rainfall is only about 15 inches but we were far off that last year. We've received a grand total of one inch since the season started October 1st. I try to keep in mind that most of our rain should also come later but, as last year's El Nino was a bust here, it's hard not to get anxious, especially as forecasters say we're in a La Nina period.

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  10. Hooray for rain! Laughing at Mother Nature's spit. Both your vases this week are so pretty, one flamboyant, the other more subtle.

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    1. Spit is just what most of the rain we received prior to this storm felt like, Alison - it might briefly dampen the pavement or one's face but it didn't even register as measurable rain.

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  11. Yay for the rain? 2/3" is substantial, could it have come in a little cardboard box from I Oregon? (Haha) glad you got your vase cuttings taken before the downpours started, I'm especially fond of the second one this week!

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    1. I did think the timing of the cool weather and rain was auspicious for the health and safety of the arrival in the little cardboard box, Loree!

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  12. WOW! No words to express the beauty of the flowers:)

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  13. I share your joy at the rain; when it has been dry for so long it feels just wonderful, I can understand people rushing outside to stand in the pouring rain at the beginning of the monsoon. Hope this is the first of a good wet winter for you. Both the vases are gorgeous, despite the drought you have a wonderful collection of flowers to choose from.

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    1. Thanks for the good wishes, Christina. It's supposed to be a "La Nina" year, which usually means low rainfall, although lower than the 5.65 inches we recorded last year is hard to imagine! Of course, the forecasters were wrong about El Nino's effects on Southern California last year so they may be wrong again.

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  14. Nice work on the bouquets. I will go look up the Hypoestes now.

    We got about .5" here. I stayed up late just listening to the rain--to the sweet music it made.

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    1. Annie's offers the Hypoestes, although I think I got the plant for my former garden at a LA Arboretum plant sale years and years ago.

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  15. Glad you got a decent amount of rain at last! I wonder what a difference it will. ake to the garden... Our garden is a bit soggy right now after a week of it, but when I hear of your drought I don't complain and just wish it in your direction! :) I love both sides of your first vase, which look like two differnet vases! I must try and get a front and back effect some time too as it really is effective. Love all your flowers again, especially the Grevillea and Callistemon together. Have a good Thanksgiving celebration Kris!

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    1. I wish you could send us your excess rain too, Cathy! There's another prospect of rain this coming weekend in the forecast but, as that wasn't there yesterday and may not be there tomorrow, I'm trying not to get my hopes up. Thanks for the Thanksgiving wishes.

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  16. Wow, you made some great arrangements. The Eustoma grandiflorum look like roses to me, this I have to checkout. Funny, I've stopped by before and I'm really enjoying your kitchen, mine is getting a make-over so it's fun to get new ideas.

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    1. You have the best chance of finding Eustoma grandiflorum in spring, Patsi. You'll usually find it sold under its common name of Lisianthus. I hope your kitchen remodel is going smoothly. My kitchen needs an overall - I like all the white but a solid surface counter, an under-mounted sink, and higher grade cabinetry is on my wish list.

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  17. It's been so fabulous to get rain!!! Love your shots of your garden in the misty weather :) Your use of the Nandina reminds me how wonderful it is to have plants with nice berries - both in the garden and in vases.

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    1. The Nandina berries work pretty well in a vase - they don't drop as readily as those of other plants, although I do worry about the cat eating one as they're poisonous. Cotoneaster and Heteromeles arbutifolia are also good berry producers here.

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