Monday, April 10, 2017

In a Vase on Monday: Stuffed to the Gills (Again)

When I walked into the garden to select flowers for "In a Vase on Monday," the popular meme hosted by Cathy of Rambling in the Garden, I'd already selected 2 plants I wanted to use.  The first was Prostanthera ovalifolia (aka purple mint bush), which I'd discovered in full bloom last week.  The plant sits on my 45-degree front slope behind several Limonium perezii and, as the 2 plants are similar in color, it was almost hidden.

The Prostanthera is in the background here, blending in all too well with the Limonium in the foreground


I thought including a stem in one of my vases would at least give the plant its moment to shine; however, cutting it without tumbling head first or tromping on the surrounding plants was more difficult than I'd anticipated.  When I had my stem, I realized I had no idea what I should use to accent it, yet, by the time I completed a stroll around the garden, I had too much material (again).  Spring is bursting out all over!

Front view with the poor Prostanthera once again in the background while sweet peas occupy the front and center of the vase

The back view gives the Prostanthera greater prominence but it shares the stage with the fluffy Ageratum corymbosum

Top view showing the contents as an ensemble cast

The vase contains: Top row - Ageratum corymbosum, the Ageratum's pretty purple leaf, and Coriandrum sativum
Middle row - blue and lavender forms of Lathyrus odoratus and Matthiola incana
Bottom row - Polygala myrtifolia 'Mariposa', Prostanthera ovalifolia, and Westringia fruticosa 'Mundi'


The second flower I planned to use this week was the noID Alstroemeria that's blooming profusely underneath the still leafless mimosa tree (Albizia julibrissin).  This pink Alstroemeria, a variety that goes dormant in summer, came with the garden, as did the noID orange daylilies that grow in the same location.  The Alstroemeria and the Hemerocallis look awful together so I'm not at all hesitant to use the former in vases once the foliage of the latter shows up.  However, not wanting to repeat myself, I wasn't at all sure what I should use to accent the flowers.  As before, the garden provided too many options (all of which I found impossible to resist).

At least the Alstroemeria can claim to have a prominent place in this vase, although the maroon sweet peas are perhaps too assertive

Back view: Those Pelargonium peltatum stems look more dark pink than red in person!

Top view, showing off the New Zealand tea tree stems that surprised me with another heavy flush of blooms

Clockwise from the upper left, the vase contains: noID Alstoemeria, more Coriandrum sativum, maroon Lathyrus odoratus, Leptospermum scoparium 'Pink Pearl', Papaver nudicaule with tiny stems of Pelargonium 'White Lady', and noID reddish-pink Pelargonium peltatum


The well-packed vases found their places.

The first vase is in the front entryway and the second is on the dining room table


Visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden to see what spring has wrought elsewhere in the northern hemisphere and which fall beauties are delighting bloggers in the southern hemisphere.


All material © 2012-2017 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

34 comments:

  1. I loved the soft lavender tones of your first vase but then saw your second one from above and that is just as gorgeous! You have such a good eye for combining blooms so it is a good thing that you have an abundance of them to share with us!

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    1. In retrospect, Cathy, I think I should have limited the contents of the second vase to the Alstroemeria, Lathyrus and Leptospermum - and possibly used a larger vase to make everything less crowded. Time permitting, I may even rearrange that vase this week.

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  2. Both vases sing the abundance of the season. Oh the delightful fragrance of sweet peas, there's nothing quite like it.

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    1. I'm enjoying the sweet peas, Peter! I hope the weather allows me sufficient time to make good use of them. Often, the combination of heat and wind takes the plants out prematurely.

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  3. I love the abundance of your vases. The restricted colours of these are so very pretty. Calming but wonderfully interesting. You must have so much to choose from. I'm learning to grow lots of bushier, more subtle plants to fill the vase and give a background to the bigger flowers.

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    1. There's an embarrassment of riches in terms of floral material at the moment, Alison! I seem to discover something new in bloom or about to bloom almost every day. The winter rains REALLY made a difference this year.

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  4. I love bouquets that are variations on one color and you do it so well. I ordered an Alstroemeria that is supposed to be hardy in my zone. We'll see if I have any flowers to cut this year. They look so good in your arrangement.

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    1. It must be one of the Alstroemeria that goes dormant, Linda. All of those I inherited with my garden are of that type - the evergreen varieties seem harder to find. I hope yours blooms beautifully for you!

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  5. It is quite impressive how many beautiful flowers you have in your garden all year around!You must be a very happy gardener, Kris!

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  6. Bountiful Blue is what comes to mind, everything is gorgeous and I want to come to LA again! I really need to look into those Ageratum (a weed here, but not like that and who could resist the color!?)

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    1. This Ageratum (A. corymbosum) is a shrub, Amelia, and it doesn't self-seed, or at least not here. I got mine from Annie's Annuals & Perennials by mail order.

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  7. The purply vase is a smaller echo of the wider beauty in your garden.
    I do admire both.

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    1. Thank you, Diana. I notice the blue arrangement on every pass through my entry - both the scent and the sight of it is pleasant.

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  8. Your cup runners over, beautifully!

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    1. It's our most bountiful time of the year, Loree!

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  9. Hi Kris, I love the lavender colored vase! You are so lucky to have so many different flower in this color that you could fill a whole vase with them. Your Sweet Peas are so beautiful!
    I have sown some in February in big containers. They have grown to maybe 3 inch and then just stopped. Some are even yellow. Looks like my whole crop is failing. I am really sad about this and don't have no clue what has happened since I have successfully grown Sweet Peas in containers before :-(.
    Warm regards,
    Christina

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    1. I've always planted my sweet pea seeds early, Christina, usually sometime in September. The raccoons messed around with my seedlings this fall so I sowed another batch (in November, I think), then added a few extra seedlings picked up from Roger's Gardens in early December. I don't know if you have trouble with the Santa Ana winds in San Diego like we do here but those winds often take out my plants in early spring.

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  10. Hi Kris, I always enjoy your exotic and vibrant vases, also because I get to meet so many plants I don't know. It's great to have such an abundance to pick from. I'm delighted to hear you've got owls too. Maybe you can get your husband to build you an owl chateau - wouldn't it be nice to have a family in your beautiful garden? Happy Easter, best wishes, Annette

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    1. I'd love to have an owl family move into the back garden, Annette!

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  11. Both are gorgeous vases Kris, you have a good eye for combining flowers. Prostanthera is quite lovely. I'm also a big fan of Limonium but it does not like my garden. I can't keep it growing and I don't even see it very often for sale. Have a great week.

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    1. The fact that Limonium isn't commonly offered in your area is another telling clue about the difference in our climates, Susie. Here it's so common that it's sold as plugs in 6-packs and used in street medians.

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  12. Like the purple bouquet !!!
    Thanks for all the nice comments and Happy Easter !!
    Mariana

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    1. I hope you have a wonderful holiday weekend, Mariana!

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  13. It's lovely to see your vases packed full and think about how full your garden must be right now! I wish my sweet peas were growing better this year; they're all alive, just not growing fast enough to flower though some were started last winter! Gardening anomalies... :/ I love the way you've combined the colors in the two arrangements!

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    1. The sweet peas surprised me a bit with their vigor this year, Amy. When the raccoons romped through my first sowing of seeds, I thought I'd be lucky to get a few to bloom. I sowed more and then the rains arrived and voila! I really should have thinned them further as they're currently tumbling all over one another.

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  14. Swoon-worthy AGAIN! I'm marveling at how you have so many different flowers whose colors work so harmoniously. Both of these arrangements are stunning, Kris! Phew!

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    1. Oh, I have areas in which the colors in the garden really don't flow - it's much easier to assemble them in a vase. I'm in the process of moving some flowering shrubs in favor of more neutral foliage to improve the overall appearance of the landscape.

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  15. These are wonderful Kris, and I can only imagine how much pleasure it gives you to go out and pick so many flowers each week almost all year round! :)

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    1. The height of our recent drought being the exception, California's climate is a blessing for gardeners, Cathy. With the possible exception of late summer, I actually can cut flowers all year.

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  16. Just like Cathy, when I saw the first vase it would be my favourite, I just love the colour combinations and then I saw the second and it won my heart. I'm a bit envious as I tried to order Altroemeria this spring but the nursery let me down!! U know they would do so well in my garden and I love them in vases.

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    1. I've little doubt that Alstroemeria would work for you, Christina. If your local nursery can't supply the plant, maybe you can find it available by mail order. Many of the US bulb suppliers offer varieties but I don't know if they ship overseas.

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  17. Both vases are just lovely - I particularly liked the no name alstromeria. What a glorious colour to be without a name. Your tall straight vase with the wiggly lines running down it (almost like stylised tree bark?) is so pretty. Would have liked to have seen a closer view of the detail. You really have a great way with colour - those vases are so peaceful.

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    1. My mother brought me that vase from her only trip to her parent's home country of Finland, Cathy. I'd use it more often if I had more flowers with tall stems!

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