Monday, July 3, 2017

In a Vase on Monday: Begging to be picked

I was on my way home from the Washington DC area last Monday after attending the 2017 Garden Bloggers' Fling and, arriving home in the late afternoon at the height of a heatwave, I missed out on "In a Vase on Monday" for what I think was the first time since I began participating.  As much as I missed joining in on the meme, I also lamented the absence of flowers in the house as I've grown used to having them there to greet me every time I walk in the door.  I thought of cutting some flowers "off schedule" but it was a busy week and I never quite got round to it.  The garden was screaming for attention too but I've barely made a dent in that either.

The biggest issue in the garden at the moment is the blanket of pink fuzz from the mimosa tree (Albizia julibrissin) which covers a large area of the back garden.  This tree, inherited with the garden, is a major mess-maker, especially in the summer when it's in full bloom as it is now.

The tree sits just beyond the edge of the back patio, stretching its branches in all directions.  It flowered lightly during the height of our drought but it's over-achieving this year and the floral free-fall is continuous.


I'll save the specifics of my complaints about the mimosa for another post at another time.  On Sunday, I decided to try making lemonade out of lemons and cut a few small branches from the Albizia to use in an arrangement, along with a host of other pink blooms that recently made an appearance.

This mason jar contains the pink ensemble I collected on my pass through the garden.  The fuzzy pink blooms on the right are those cut from the mimosa tree.


I soon became frustrated with the Albizia flowers, as they dropped all over my kitchen and stuck to my clothing.  In the end, I omitted them from my arrangement.  I had plenty of better-behaved plant material to use.

This is the completed arrangement, sans the annoying Albizia blossoms

Back view

Top view, showing off the free noID lily I planted 5 years ago.  It's not flashy and it has no scent but it's returned every year while other lilies disappear after one or two years in the ground here.

Clockwise from the left, the vase contains: Eustoma grandiflorum (from one of my original plants, hanging on for yet another year), Abelia x grandiflora 'Edward Goucher', Artemisia ludoviciana, Coprosma repens 'Plum Hussey with Origanum 'Monterey Bay', and the noID lily


I cleaned up a couple of small stems of the Albizia and plopped them in a tiny vase on the kitchen counter.  I vowed that as soon as the flowers started to drop, I'll toss the lot.

They were jettisoned by dinner time


There were plenty of other flowers begging to be cut.  I forced myself to stop after creating two more vases.  Here's the first:

A simple arrangement consisting of shades of yellow, silver and white with another returning Lisianthus front and center

And Shasta daisies adding interest in the rear

Top view, highlighting the silvery cones of Leucadendron 'Pisa'

Clockwise from the left, the vase contains: pale yellow Eustoma grandiflorum, Abelia 'Hopley's Variegated', Leucadendron 'Pisa', Leucanthemum x superbum, and Tanacetum niveum


And here's the last vase:

This one features a deep blue Lisianthus as well as a white variety showing just the faintest touch of lavender 

Back view, featuring Cupid's Dart 

Top view

Clockwise from the left: blue Eustoma grandiflorum, a white form, Catananche caerulea, Duranta 'Sapphire Showers', and Vitex trifolia


Hopefully, I'll have more Lisianthus to share in future weeks.  I planted plugs of a variety said to produce flowers that are nearly black, as well as a white variety edged in blue.  Neither has bloomed yet.

For more IaVoM posts, visit our host, Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.


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

30 comments:

  1. Didn't know till now that Albizia blooms dropped so quick, not good material for flower arranging at all. Leaves seems more behaved though. Lovely arrangements as usual!

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    1. Oh, the leaves drop continuously too from the time they first appear but, by comparison to the flowers and the seedpods, they're less of an issue.

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  2. Too bad Albizia doesn't cooperate well in a vase as the flowers are such lovely things on the tree. Your pink arrangement looks better without them but glad you plopped some in a vase of their own to enjoy for a short time. The blue arrangement made my heart beat faster. The blue Eustomas always make me swoon.

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    1. I've had some difficulty capturing the color of the blue Eustomas on my camera. I'm wondering what that means for the almost black flowers, assuming I get any.

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  3. Well you've certainly got flowers in the house now! I love all your arrangements (yes, even the short lived Albizia) and the fact you tucked in the Leucadendron cones makes me very happy.

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    1. Some of the limbs with those Leucadendron cones were having a hard time holding their weight - they really were begging to be cut.

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  4. I'm a fan of pink, so I have to say I love your first vase (sans Mimosa). One problem, for me, of going away to the Fling is a loss of momentum in garden work. It's hard to get right back into the swing, at least for me (especially since I'm still coughing).

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    1. I'm sorry that cough is still plaguing you, Alison. I know the frustration of having it linger like that as it usually happens to me too whenever a cold settles into my chest. I hope you experience a rebound soon!

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  5. Oh my goodness, Kris, the pink vase was pretty and then you had the cool whites and greens of the second vase and then you stunned me with the last one. The actual 'art nouveau' vase itself is gorgeous, but then the contents...MMM! The blue lisianthus an teh catanche are a wonderful combination and the backs of the foliage seem to pick up on their blueness - gorgeous... :)

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    1. That vase was a wedding gift from a work friend many, many years ago, and I still treasure it. The only problem with it is that it doesn't hold much water so I have to ensure I refill it every day.

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  6. Oooooh Kris, all three of your vases are absolutely stunning! I love flower arrangements using just one color in different shades and you did yours in such creative and interesting ways.
    The Eustomas seem to be indispensable for your bouquets. They are so lovely and as you show, make incredible good cut flowers.
    The mimosa tree looks very nice and I dare to say that I do like its blooms, but of course, I see your point.
    Wishing you a wonderful 4th of July!
    Warm regards,
    Christina

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    1. I think it's safe to say that Eustomas are a summer staple in my garden, Christina. Happy 4th to you too!

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  7. Each vase is striking in its own right. That first one with the pink lily and Eustoma is perfectly balanced. Love it. We had a mimosa tree at my house when I was little and as kids we loved playing with the silky flowers. Alas, it is invasive here now. Love how you created the special little vase featuring the mimosa.

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    1. Given my experience with its rampant self-seeding, I'm surprised that mimosa isn't considered invasive here too, Susie. I'm always loathe to remove healthy mature trees but, if I could replace this one without creating utter havoc in my garden, I'd do it. It has stature and a nice shape but those are the only good things I can say about it.

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  8. Each arrangement better than the last! Oh, my heart leapt at the dichroic blue vase with Lisianthus and Catananche. Gorgeous!

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    1. I was pleased with the combination of blue flowers too, Eliza. It was a last-minute addition to the queue. The blue Lisianthus usually bloom earlier and finish earlier than the other varieties so I thought I should make use of them while I can.

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  9. Pretty in Pink is my favorite. Love pretty Lilies that return and are reliable. I am a Southerner and while everyone loves the romance of the Mimosa, they are considered a trash tree and are illegal to plant in many places. I applaud your creativity in using it.

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    1. A trash tree just about sums it up, Amy!

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  10. You're really good at doing different kinds of arrangements. Interested to see what you do with the mimosa .

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    1. I'd love to replace the mimosa, Patsi, but I fear that removing it would destabilize my entire back slope. And then there's the fact that it would take years for any replacement tree to reach an equivalent size. I keep wondering if construction of a pergola with some type of summer cover could help manage at least some of the litter.

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  11. I think with your many vases it is certainly true that you will be able to please everyone. Your cream and white arrangement is my favourite..it got me looking up several of the plants, and it looks like my garden is now in need of an Abelia!!

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    1. Abelias are great plants, Noelle. I have a surprising number of them.

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  12. Isn't it wonderful to be able to fill multiple vases from one's own garden! I love how I learn about other plants like Mimosa from what others do and don't put in their vases.

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    1. There's an Albizia 'Summer Chocolate' that seems to be more restrained than the common variety - at least I've yet to see it replicating itself all over the place. It's grown primarily for its dark foliage and doesn't seem to produce as many flowers. Of course, that may be because all of those I've seen have been relatively small still.

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  13. The Albizia looks wonderful in the vase on its own, but I can understand the difficulties those fuzzy flowers may make... the first vase is so much more elegant and shapely without it anyway. ;-) Love the other vases too - had to laugh when you said you have to force yourself to stop! The Lisianthus are gorgeous - especially the white with a lavender tinge. Have a flowery week Kris! :)

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    1. I did seriously consider adding one more vase, Cathy, but that would have been over-the-top even by my personal standards!

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  14. I'm so impressed by your flower arranging, Kris, you could be a professional. I love the way you use vases to match the colours and shapes of the flowers.

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    1. I'm always on the look-out for new/different vases, Sue, but I've already about maxed out what little storage space I have to enclose them.

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