Monday, December 10, 2018

In a Vase on Monday: Imitation orchids and faux flowers

As both of last week's vases are still in great shape and as the front entry, normally one of two spots I place a vase is currently showing off a Christmas display, I didn't "need" to create any new vases this week.  But, of course, that doesn't mean I didn't.  My Hong Kong Orchid tree (Bauhinia x blakeana) is one of a dozen trees scheduled for trimming next Saturday so it seemed only prudent to cut a few of those flowers while I still can.

The orchid tree was slow to recover after the horrific heatwave that struck in July but it's finally full of flowers again

View from one side

and the other

This overhead view lets you see almost all the elements at once

Clockwise from the upper left, the vase contains: Bauhina x blakeana, Alternanthera 'Little Ruby', Artemisia 'Powis Castle', Hemizygia 'Candy Kisses', Cuphea hybrid 'Starfire Pink', and Persicaria capitata

The new arrangement found a spot in the master bedroom, one of the few empty spaces available at present


With the new vase occupying the bedroom mantle; a Christmas display in the front entry; last week's orchid and Leucadendron arrangement now in the living room, along with a half-decorated Christmas tree; and last week's teapot arrangement still gracing the dining room table, I didn't have space for any more vases.  However, I stumbled across a new Instagram trend involving decorating with succulents Saturday evening and I decided to give it a try and share the results with you.  Although #succiepotinapot is a Instagram challenge, I discovered it via Pinterest.  I relied on materials I already had on hand, which limited my options, but I still had fun with it.

I used an 8-inch ceramic pot and a 2.5-inch clay pot, creating a bouquet of "flowers" using small specimens of the following succulents: Echeveria agavoides 'Red Tips', E. 'Azulita', E. 'Morning Beauty', E. 'Violet Queen', and Jovibarba heuffelii.  I used cuttings of Crassula pubescens radicans to create leaves.  I stole gravel from my cutting garden to cover the exposed soil.


There are many better succulent pots in a pot arrangements posted on Instagram and Martha Stewart has a post on the Instagram challenge too.

For now, I've moved the pot to my lath (shade) house to keep it out of the way of the tree trimming crew due on Saturday.

I used plastic pot feet to display it on a tilt



Visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden to see what she and other IAVOM contributors have put together this week.


All material © 2012-2018 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

36 comments:

  1. The Bauhinia arrangement is beautiful and, for me, exotic, but I really love the succiepotinapot! I haven't seen that trending either on Pinterest or Instagram, so I'll have to check it out. I could do that.

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    1. The succulent pot in a pot was surprisingly easy to create, Alison, even with the bits and pieces I had on hand. If I'd discovered it earlier, some of my friends might have received pots as holiday gifts. I've no idea how well these creations hold up over time, though.

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  2. I just hopped over to Instagram to have a look. Those are amazing. Succulents are so in vogue just now. Or maybe they always have been and I just didn't notice. I like the pinks and particularly Alternanthera. I love dark red foliage.

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    1. Well, even here in a climate made for succulents, they didn't come into vogue until about a decade ago. Now, no garden center that wants to stay afloat would be without an ample selection.

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  3. I so love your orchid tree and you have added the perfect materials to really show them off, perfect. I also wanted to create a succulent arrangement but I think mine will have wait until after Christmas now. I love how you have added the terracotta pot- simple but very clever!

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    1. The succulent pot in a pot idea came straight out of Instagram, via Pinterest in my case, Christina. It seems to be a relatively recent "thing," as evidenced by Martha Stewart's coverage of the Instagram challenge in October.

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  4. Love the succulents...most amusing.

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    1. It's a cute idea and some people have done fabulous things with it, Noelle. Mine is a humble effort by comparison.

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  5. Well first, I have to give you a hard time because it's freezing here and you have an orchid TREE! I love the succulent arrangement. I am going to go shopping tomorrow for a few small succulents to create an arrangement I also saw on Pinterest. I have pine cones and some fallen twigs that should work. Since you've said it's a current "thing," I feel very hip. Here's my inspiration: https://pin.it/wewgcpdnl3atp5

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    1. Succulents are popping up everywhere, Linda, even in climates in which the plants are tender. I think their appeal is that many are very sculptural. Another "thing" that I've seen trending is their use in wedding bouquets. I like your inspiration piece a lot - a perfect use of succulents for a colder climate.

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  6. What a thing of beauty that oechid tree is - such beautiful flowers. But your succulent display is absolutely adorable - who needs to see a better one on Instagram when we can see yours. It's brilliant!

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    1. Oh there are some much more complex creations on Instagram, Cathy!

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  7. I thought from the title that hell had frozen over and you would be featuring silk flowers. I should have known better! Sorry that you'll be loosing orchid tree blooms to the tree trimmer. Love the succulent bouquet and may try something similar sometime.

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    1. I have a strong dislike for silk (or polyester) flowers so hell would indeed have to freeze over before you'd see me use them, Peter! I hope the tree trimmer will be gentle with the orchid tree - it's supposed to be a "light" pruning to remove some of the twiggy growth and a branch trailing over the roof.

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  8. Beautiful pinks with the Bauhinia, ours are not going yet and I love the succulent pot within a pot! hope you got some lovely gentle rain.

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    1. The rain wasn't entirely gentle but at least my area didn't experience any mudslides, Amelia. Unfortunately, the same can't be said for some of the recent burn areas.

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  9. Love the pinks you've chosen this week, Kris. I would love to find a pink Cuphea, but this year all the vendors had only orange. I'll keep looking until I find one.
    Those pot within pots are charming - yours is beautiful!

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    1. My pink Cuphea came from Annie's Annuals & Perennials (Northern California) by mail order, Eliza. She regularly carries it, although the variety has shown up occasionally in local garden centers here of late so its popularity may be growing (excuse the pun). The hummingbirds LOVE the plant.

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  10. Beautiful vase Kris and I love the succulent display....beautiful and wow the ones I saw on Instagram are amazing.

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    1. I was pretty impressed by the Instagram posts too, Donna, as indicated by the fact that I immediately jumped on the bandwagon.

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  11. It's dazzling to have an orchid tree offering up such lovely blooms. You used them quite well. Fun use of the succulents too, Kris.

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    1. I'm surprised the orchid tree isn't used more here, Susie. It's a smaller tree, fairly drought tolerant, and a reliable bloomer - at least when it isn't stricken by a jolt from the sun's death rays.

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  12. I love your orchid tree blooms. I am glad it survived the heat wave. I think the artemesia is the perfect foil for the orchids. I really like your succulent arrangement framed in the blue pot. It looks like a vase full of succulents. Your fragments would be a windfall of succulents for me.

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    1. Succulents are an addiction, Lisa. They're ideally suited for our climate here and they're slowly coming to dominate large areas of my garden. As I recall, the garden came with just one good-sized clump of Agave attentuata and no other succulents - now I'd say at least 20% of my garden has succulents. But, when you're dealing with drought, they're the right plants to have.

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  13. Wow! I’d never heard of #succiepotinapot, but of course once I clicked over I was completely absorbed. I love what you created, it’s fabulous!

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    1. I was surprised I hadn't noticed #succiepotinapot until now either. I hope to see one from you one day, Loree!

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  14. Lovely exotic flowers, all ones I can't grow, how wonderful to have an orchid tree.I love your succulent arrangement, what fun.

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    1. Something new for you to try now that you've developed an interest in succulents, Chloris!

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  15. Oh gosh, that first arrangement is delicious! I remember seeing so many amazing Orchid trees in Florida and California. What's the vase life on the Bauhinia flowers? I love your succulent arrangement, too.

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    1. Unfortunately, the Bauhinia flowers last only a few days, Beth.

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    1. A pot in a pot, with succulents - it's a "thing," HB!

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  17. Lovely. And I do love your succulent arrangement! Have a good weekend Kris!

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