Monday, July 13, 2020

In a Vase on Monday: Surprising myself

The heat turned up here last week, rising into the low 90sF (33C).  My garden is entering its summer doldrums in response.  Last year the first dahlia blooms appeared in my cutting garden in late June and early July but I haven't even seen evidence of buds forming yet from the tubers I planted this year.  Of course, last year I planted most of my tubers in early March whereas this year I didn't get around to planting the first of these until mid-April and didn't finish planting the rest until early May.  As I dragged my feet on pulling the last of my cool season flowers as well, I was also late in sowing sunflower and zinnia seeds in their place.  So, I have a gap in my supply of floral material at the moment, especially as only a few flowers are growing in profusion in the garden at large.

Early Sunday morning I focused on the two flowering plants with the most blooms at present, lion's tail and California aster, but I was at a loss as to what to pair with them that I haven't used before.  I strolled the garden and cut a few things here and there on spec.  What I ended up with produced my first vase, which wasn't something I had in mind at the start at all.

I used an ornamental teapot with colors that matched my selected plant material.  I think this is the first time I've used the dwarf myrtle (Myrtus communis) that's been growing in my garden for almost 5 years now.  Yellow Jerusalem sage (Phlomis fruticosa) produced a few stray blooms long after the rest of the flowers have gone to seed.

Back view: I used Corokia virgata 'Sunsplash' (aka variegated wire bush) to add height and an airy quality and stems of the copper-tinged Leucadendron 'Safari Goldstrike' as an accent and filler

Top view

Clockwise from the upper left: Corokia virgata 'Sunsplash', Leucanthemum x superbum, Leucadendron 'Safari Goldstrike', Myrtus communis 'Compacta', Phlomis fruticosa, and noID Cosmos


I originally thought I'd throw the lion's tail (Leonotis leonurus) I'd cut in with the materials that formed the first vase but, when I decided against that, I paired the former with other blooms and foliage to create a fiery mix.

I stuck to yellow, orange and red for this arrangement

Back view: The slightly cooler tones of the variegated Abelia brought the temperature of the mix down a bit

Top view

Clockwise from the upper left: Leonotis leonurus, Abelia grandiflora 'Kaleidoscope', Cuphea micropetala, Leucadendron 'Wilson's Wonder', Gaillardia 'Arizona Sun', and noID Zinnias


I ended up using the California aster (Symphyotrichum chilense) in a larger scale version of the small arrangement of "leftovers" I created last week.

The dark blue Lisianthus (Eustoma grandiflorum) took a beating under last week's heat but the aster appears to love the higher temperatures.  The latter has been blooming well ahead of schedule.

Back view

Top view

Left to right: Abelia grandiflora 'Hopley's Variegated', Eustoma grandiflorum, and Symphyotrichum chilense.  I added stems of a noID lavender as well but I couldn't get a clear photo of those.


Our temperatures are expected to drop this week and, although I've been on a bit of a plant buying spree of late, none of my new purchases are poised to produce instant blooms so I've no idea what I'll come up with next week.  However, I've realized that my garden has a way of providing even when I can't see it.

For more IAVOM creations, visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.



All material © 2012-2020 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

23 comments:

  1. Three completely different vases from your amazing garden - even when it might look as though there isn't a lot to pick - and all of them so lovely! I have a particular fondness for the first vase! So pretty, summery and dainty, and the second one is bold and, dare I say it, almost autumnal with those lovely bronzes and oranges! And your third vase has lavender - my favourite thing! Amanda https://therunningwave.blogspot.com/2020/07/two-summer-vases-on-monday.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those "autumnal" colors are present in my garden all year, Amanda ;) Southern California is a different world when it comes to plants.

      Delete
    2. It is certainly very different from our colour palette as we go through the year! A

      Delete
  2. I aways enjoy seeing your vases form above, Kris, as it gives a better understanding of how they work. As Amanda suggests, from the results it doesn't look as if there was any danger of you not being able to put a vase together, let alone your usual 3! I especially like the second one today

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Earlier in the week I kept thinking I might need to consider tiny little vases this week, Cathy. But it's surprising what you find when you put your mind to it.

      Delete
  3. As always, most lovely Kris. I can't imagine you not having an abundance of flowers to pick from as I always envy your varieties. Me thinks, a lull to you would probably be an abundance to me. Even so, it is nice to have many options, especially since you always create three vases.
    Sorry to hear about your heat. It is still going strong here (mid 90's) for 3 weeks now, and the same on the next 2 week forecast. Anxious for any kind of reprieve, especially in the form of rain.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Three weeks of temperatures in the mid-90s is brutal. We experience conditions like that periodically too but we're lucky that this summer, so far at least, the heat has had an off button. Rain, on the other hand, is unlikely for months yet.

      Delete
  4. A beautiful array of flowers Kris and I can't ever see you running out of flowers to pick whatever the season is 😂 I must admit that I would be entering the doldrums with temperatures like yours. I hope that it becomes more bearable soon. What a beautiful aster to hail from your part of the world.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Surprisingly, other parts of the US have been even hotter than we've been thus far, Anna. Upper 80s-low 90sF (30-34C) isn't exactly comfortable weather to garden in but it's manageable. When it climbs above 100F (38C), it's more unpleasant as it often doesn't cool down until the early morning hours then.

      Delete
  5. It's true, even if at first you have no idea what to fill the vases with, the garden always provides a solution. Or at least yours does :-D
    I adore the little teapot! That particular arrangement made me feel I'm in a beach cottage.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love that little teapot, although I never use it for tea. It had belonged to my mother-in-law.

      Delete
  6. I saw on the weather that your temps are around 100, which seems brutal. Our temps are in the 80s but the humidity makes it feel much worse. Summer is like this, I guess!
    Even in your summer lull, you still manage to find lovely things to create a vase or two. I like how you've matched up the vases with the flower colors. The teapot really matches! I love the Leonotis, such a glorious color. Beautiful trio of arrangements, Kris!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Parts of Los Angeles County had temperatures well above 100 it's true, including the inland valley area I grew up in, which registered a temperature of 106 at least one day last week. While my area on this peninsula can be a good 10 degrees hotter than the other side that enjoys the western see breezes, we peaked at 95 here and temperatures more generally stayed in the 88-92 range. Even so, that's no weather for gardening mid-day. I confined most of the work I did last week to the early morning and late afternoon hours.

      Delete
  7. You have beautiful flowers, gorgeous vases and it's interesting to see how you chose to use them today and be inspired by them. The first one is calm and peaceful. I love it. The fiery second one is striking and strong--love it too. And the third is a creative use of leftovers! Love them all.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Susie. The completely unplanned first arrangement was my own personal favorite this week.

      Delete
  8. I admire the constant ballet you direct in your garden to achieve such a variety of blooms, given the high temperatures etc. Then of course, there are your beautiful arrangements. My favourite this week is the first...but then if there is the heat of the second with its colours, and finally the openness of the last one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're too kind to refer to it as a "ballet," Noelle. I'd say it's more like leading a band of middle school instrumentalists!

      Delete
  9. oh my goodness, asters already. I love them but they say fall to me. We are having a little taste of fall this morning. It is 58F. Feels wonderful and the birds are singing their heads off. I had no doubt you would find something colorful and beautiful to fill vases in your vast garden. Always fun to see what pops in.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. According to the grower, I shouldn't see flowers on the asters until August - and I saw the first flowers on these in June. I don't remember them blooming this early (or this vigorously!) in prior years either.

      Delete
  10. Nice, I love the Leonitis and think it makes a great cut flower, I have been growing L.nepetifolia. I rarely end up with the vase idea I start out with and yours worked out great this week. Fiery is my favorite.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have a Leonotis nepetifolia as well, Amelia. Mine's never been very vigorous, at least by comparison to L. leonurus, but it's survived!

      Delete
  11. I adore the fiery mix! My Leonotis leonurus lived through our mild winter but I've yet to see any sign of blooming.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mine blooms better in some years than others, Loree. I know you've been cool and wet much of the time - I hope it'll burst into bloom for you when temperatures rise.

      Delete

I enjoy receiving your comments and suggestions!