Monday, August 17, 2020

In a Vase on Monday: Rescue Operation

It got hot last week and it's expected to stay hot most of this week.  Saturday was uncomfortable enough to keep me inside most of the day and, because the forecast was for more of the same on Sunday, I got up early and cut everything and anything I thought might be incinerated by toasty temperatures to include in my vases this week.  As it turned out, I went overboard - even by my own standards.

Vase #1 was inspired by the first blooms from Dahlia 'Labyrinth':

I played off the apricot and rose colors in the dahlia blooms when selecting companions

which led me to use stems of Grevillea 'Superb' to dress up the back of the arrangement

and to cut two stems of Rudbeckia 'Sahara' as shown in this overhead view

Clockwise from the upper left: Dahlia 'Labyrinth', Abelia x grandiflora 'Kaleidoscope', Coprosma repens 'Plum Hussey', Grevillea 'Superb', and Rudbeckia hirta 'Sahara'.  Both stems of the Rudbeckia came from the same plant even though they look very different.


Vase #2 was inspired by the stems of the purple Gladiolus that were fading fast in my cutting garden:

I'd hoped to add white Amaryllis belladonna to this arrangement but Saturday's heat left those stems in an unpresentable state, hence the addition of the lavender Lisianthus

and the white Cosmos (back view)

Surprisingly, the California aster (Symphyotrichum chilense) seemed to respond to the heat by producing more blooms (overhead view)

Clockwise from the upper left: Gladiolus 'Vuvuzela', Abelia x grandiflora 'Hopley's Variegated', Cosmos bipinnatus, lavender and blue Eustoma grandiflorum (aka Lisianthus), and Symphyotrichum chilense (aka California or Pacific aster)


Vase #3 was inspired by my desire to save the last pristine Amaryllis belladonna:

I originally thought I could insert the pink Amaryllis into the first vase with Dahlia 'Labyrinth' but even my color-blind husband told me it wasn't a good fit

I used leftover stems of Abelia 'Hopley's Variegated' and white Eustoma grandiflorum with a slight pink tinge to flesh out this small vase


The last vase features 'Green Star' Gladiolus.  All the gladiola stems in full bloom were severely affected by the heat.  Luckily, I planted about half my gladiola corms a week after the first ones and those that haven't bloomed yet don't appear to have been impacted by the heat.

I added the first bloom of Dahlia 'Enchantress' and a stem of Dahlia 'Sellwood Glory', which is similar in color

I used stems of Prostanthera ovalifolia 'Variegata' (aka mint bush) as a foliage filler (back view)

Overhead view

Clockwise from the upper left: Gladiolus 'Green Star', Dahlias 'Enchantress' and 'Sellwood Glory', Ocimum basilicum 'African Blue Basil', Prostanthera ovalifolia 'Variegata', Zinnia elegans 'Envy' and Zinnia from 'Northern Lights Blend'


Four vases is a lot, even for me.  For more IAVOM creations, visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.


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

26 comments:

  1. Wow Kris! You certainly have gone to town. It would have been so sad to see these beauties suffer from sunburn. My favourite is your first vase with the beautiful 'Labyrinth' dahlia. The whirlygig anthers (I'm not sure whether that is the right term) on the grevillia are so appealing. I've noticed that the 'Sahara' flower colours can change as they mature.

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    1. I'm in love with Dahlia 'Labyrinth' this year too, Anna. Grevillea are commonly known as spider flower plants but I like the whirligig name better! With respect to Rudbeckia 'Sahara', yes, like many dahlias, the petal color seems to change over time, as well as varying a bit from plant to plant.

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  2. So many beauties Kris, and I think my favourite is vase no. 1. And I love the vase too - it looks like a bubble with all those beautiful colours swirling around! With the heat that your garden copes with (and you) I think it is amazing how well the flowers cope with a searing sun. I heard this afternoon that the highest temperature ever recorded anywhere was achieved in a Californian desert. 54C? Something like that. How hot it must be for you, even though you are on the coast doesn't bear thinking about. It's 16 C here today. Like a mild November day - grey, grey, misty, murky, very cool and altogether a very disappointing day for the height of summer! Thank you for your wonderful vases! Amanda https://therunningwave.blogspot.com/2020/08/possibly-last-post-and-sizzlingly-hot.html

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    1. We could use some of those cool November-like days here, Amanda, especially now that the wildfires have taken off north of Los Angeles. Yes, Death Valley hit 130F/54C this weekend. Even our inland valleys, like the one I grew up in, hit 112F/44C. Luckily, our temperature here near the coast hovered just below 100F/37C at its peak.

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  3. Four vases and all amazing. The glads are a sentimental favorite. They're so strong and healthy-looking. I'm curious about D. 'Labyrinth', does yours always have the apricot coloring?

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    1. The color of Dahlia 'Labyrinth' is interesting, Susie. I grew this dahlia last year and it was mostly a creamy color, taking on a slight peachy-pink hue only under some weather conditions. This year, the dahlia's color is consistent with most of the online photos I see of it, much deeper and more dramatic in color. I should note that this isn't the same tuber I used last year. By mistake, distracted by the end stages of our remodel, I let all the tubers I dug up last November desiccate. This 'Labyrinth' tuber and all my other dahlia tubers but one were newly purchased this year.

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  4. Four vases - what a treat for us! I will go for #2, but you know I am a sucker for your 'blue' lisianthus! I like the contrast of pale and subtle blooms against the foliage in #3 too. Let's hope things cool down for you soon

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    1. That blue Lisianthus was one that clearly needed rescue this weekend, Cathy. There were two flowers on that stem but only one was worthy of inclusion in a vase as the other had shriveled in the heat. We're cooler than many areas of Southern California right now but I'll still be happy when temperatures lower enough to work in the garden again; however, if the forecasters are right, that may not happen until next weekend.

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  5. Love all of these colors. I am glad you got out in the inferno and rescued these blooms. Happy IAVOM.

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    1. Getting up REALLY early on Sunday made things easier, Lisa, although when the marine layer is absent it heats up quickly as soon as the sun comes up.

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  6. Yep even lazy me went and picked some flowers knowing otherwise they would be toast. My creations are plonks, nothing like your beauties. Love the Dahlias!

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    1. Plonking flowers is still my favorite way of "arranging" them, HB! I'm glad you have some flowers to enjoy while you're in heat hibernation.

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  7. I love the misty mauves, and the simple perfection in the kitchen.

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    1. Thanks Diana! I'm so glad we finished the kitchen last year. I can't imagine dealing with a remodel under present conditions.

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  8. These are all so lovely, Kris. You combine colors and textures so well.
    I've been seeing on the weather news how scorching it is out there right now, all the way up the coast. 130F in Death Valley - I can't imagine it! I hope it doesn't last long and your garden isn't too badly hit. Stay cool and safe.

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    1. Well, Death Valley got that name for a reason. I feel worse for people in the inland valleys, Eliza. Where my brother lives (in our childhood home), Saturday's temperature reached 112 and all he has is a swamp cooler. It's only 89F here at the moment, which is practically comfortable by comparison. However, the higher temperatures this weekend put a quick end to the last of my pretty Amaryllis belladonna.

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  9. As always, exotic, creative and beautiful!

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    1. Thanks Cindy. I think what's exotic is often a matter of geography - in my view a peony would be exotic!

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  10. Better to cut it than just let it all fry, well done!

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    1. Yes, it was the right thing as this heatwave is clearly intent on hanging on awhile yet, Loree. The Amarllyis belladonna looking perky in the garden last week are no more.

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  11. Really love the colours in that first dahlia, and paired with the Rudbeckia Sahara it looks so very pretty! I must look out for more Rudbeckias thatvare hardy as we only seem to have yellow on offer here. The blue asters in your second vase also caught my eye... a sign that late summer is here perhaps? I always look forward to aster season and relief from the heat! Have a good (cooler) week Kris!

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    1. That aster's been blooming since June, Cathy! Unfortunately, the plant, a California native that spreads by rhizomes, has covered ground aggressively after two years in a row of heavier-than-usual rain. I'm not sure what I'm going to do with it.

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  12. Four vases and all fabulous. I have Labyrinth too and I love it. It goes so well with the rudbeckia. And I always admire that gorgeous grevillea and the eustoma which looks lovely with the purple gladiolus. I love the Green Star gladiolus too and that adorable little jug.

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    1. I grew 'Labyrinth' last year and it was a pale imitation of this year's edition. It's a different tuber so it may be that what I previously received wasn't actually 'Labyrinth'. This one fits the flower's profile.

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  13. Wow, over the top, even for you! The first one is my favorite, it looks like a Dutch Renaissance painting. i hope the weather has cooled and nothing spontaneously combusted!

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    1. Yep, I went a little nuts this week, Amelia. It's still hot, and also more humid than it usually is here. I don't know how you deal with both heat and humidity on a regular basis.

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