Monday, June 28, 2021

In a Vase on Monday: We've been lucky

The Northwest US and Western Canada were hit with record-breaking heat this past weekend and the pattern is expected to continue into Monday before tapering off.  Portland, Oregon could reach 115F (46C) today.  Seattle's forecast is 112F (44C).  Meanwhile, coastal Southern California where I am avoided extreme heat, although the inland valley areas here baked.  Once again, the marine layer helped us out.

This photo was taken at 9am PDT on Sunday.  The Los Angeles harbor below us was invisible.  The marine layer began breaking up at our elevation shortly hereafter but it hung on around the harbor, keeping our daytime high temperatures at a comfortable level around 80F (26.7C).

There's a chance of a surge of monsoonal moisture here later this week.  The thunderstorms created by that condition are usually limited to the mountain and desert areas but occasionally they make their way as far as the coast.  Forecasters still aren't clear whether that will happen this time but, dry as we are, rain would be greatly appreciated, provided of course that lightning strikes don't start any fires.

It was nice to putter in my garden on Sunday, cutting flowers without sweltering.  Once again, I cut more than I'd planned, ending up with three arrangements.

The plentiful blooms of Daucus carota inspired the first arrangement.

I stuck to a red theme, with just touches of white.  The red foliage below the Daucus at the front of the vase is provided by a single stem of Leucadendron 'Ebony', which I don't think I've ever cut for inclusion in a vase before this.

Back view

Top view

Clockwise from the upper left: Allium schaerocephalon (aka drumstick allium), Cosmos bipinnatus, Perlatgonium cucullatum 'Flore Pleno', Daucus carota 'Dara', Leucadendron 'Ebony', Myrtus communis compacta, seedpods of Penstemon digitalis 'Onyx & Pearls', and Leptospermum 'Copper Glow'

The second arrangement was inspired by the flowers of Rotheca myricoides (formerly known as Clerodendrum ugandense).  It's common name is blue butterfly bush but it's not related to Buddleia.

The flowers of Rotheca myricoides really do look like small blue butterflies.  I grew the shrub without difficulty years ago when we lived in Santa Monica but I failed to make it happy in my current garden until I plopped a plant into a large terracotta pot in partial shade.

Back view: Two Osteospermums contributed flowers to serve as fillers.  As temperatures climb, the Osteospermums will lay low, ceasing to bloom until cooler weather returns in the fall.

Top view

Clockwise from the upper left: Abelia grandiflora 'Hopley's Variegated', Globularia x indubia (aka globe daisy), noID Agapanthus, Lavandula angustifolia, Osteospermum '4D Silver', O. 'Violet Ice', and Rotheca myrcoides

My discovery of the first Lisianthus (Eustoma grandiflorum) blooms required me to create a small arrangement for the kitchen island.

The green-flowered Lisianthus had already been nearly flattened by the winds that have been blowing through here daily

Clockwise from the upper left, the small vase contains: more Abelia grandiflora 'Hopley's Variegated', unripe berries of Auranticarpa rhombifolium, Eustoma grandiflorum, and Tanacetum parthenium 'Aureum'


Before I close, I have to share a current shot of last week's vase featuring the artichoke.  It held up very well overall and the artichoke actually bloomed in the vase, which was a big surprise.


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



All material © 2012-2021 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

31 comments:

  1. My favorite is the first vase, although usually I’m partial to pastel colors. ‘Dara’ with the Leucodendron ‘Ebony’ is outstanding!
    I did not recognize the name Rotheca, but I do recognize Clerodendrum. Although I have often seen the flowers, I have never grown this so perhaps this is the reason I never knew of the name change. I also like the vase with the artichoke flower and Gomphrena ‘Itsy Bitsy’: I love both plants! Have a great day and week, Kris!

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    1. Thanks Kay. I heard about the reclassification of Clerodendrum ugandense from a fellow blogger in South Africa. The "blue butterfly bush" still seems to be most commonly found here under its former name. I got my current plant from Annie's labeled as Clerodendrum.

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    2. Now it is my turn to yearn for fresh blue butterflies!

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  2. I was listening to a report about the extreme temperatures in North America and Canada on the BBC News earlier today and wondering how people and animals cope! I'm glad that it's comfortable for you Kris. Beautiful vases as always. My eyes are particularly drawn to the third and the shimmering blue vase which is a scene stealer along with the little rotheca butterflies. I can see the wings and the antannae too 😂

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    1. Yes, unlike Buddleia, which attracts butterflies, this Rotheca actually has flowers that look like butterflies. Having previously experienced the kind of heat the PNW and western Canada are now dealing with, I know how miserable it is but, as those parts of the world are much less accustomed to that kind of heat and as it came on with relatively short warning, it's got to be even harder on people there than it is here. At least we have air conditioning!

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  3. I can't conceive how hot those temperatures must feel, Kris...�� Your first arrangement is particularly stunning today, with its gorgeous bruised colours, and what a sweet colour the lisainthus is in the third one. I tried lisianthus from seed this year and it did germinate but sadly didn't get beyons seed leaf stage...

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    1. Oh, I had so hoped you'd be successful in growing Lisianthus from seed, Cathy. It's notoriously difficult to grow from seed but I know some seed companies are now selling "pelleted" seed to improve success. I've yet to try that myself, sticking to plugs (when I can find them).

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  4. The artichoke looks great! I love it, though the red vase is smashing and my favorite. I hope the marine layer hangs around for a while and keeps you cool.

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    1. So far, so good with the marine layer. It's been rolling in thick at night and hangs on here until mid-morning but it appears to be sticking around well into the afternoon below us in the area surrounding the harbor.

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  5. The artichoke is cool as can be and it really extends the life of the vase. The green Lisianthus is beautiful. You surrounded it with great companions. Your Rotheca myrcoides does look like little butterflies, it's lovely. The other flowers are gorgeous also and the color tones match so well. Glad the marine layer is making it easier for you this week.
    [I always hoped if I had a chance to visit my daughter in L.A. again that you would let me see your garden in person. But now she and her husband are moving back to NC--driving out starting Tuesday. Will be wonderful to have her closer to us, 3.5 hours instead of across the country. They've already had to rearrange one planned stay-over due to fires.]

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    1. I'd always hoped you'd have a chance to visit, Susie, but it's great that you and your husband will have your daughter and her husband closer at hand. I don't envy them that drive across country, though.

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  6. Such beautiful cut flowers and matching vases!

    I don't think I could cope with temperatures like those. Here in the UK, most places don't have air-con, and we swelter when it reaches 25-30 degrees... I'd hate to think what it would be like in the 40s!

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    1. Heat like that is indeed miserable, Nikki. We had one 3-day stretch of daytime temperatures in the 106-110F range in which even the nighttime temperatures were awful. I recorded 100F (37C) at midnight that time. The failure for nighttime temperatures to drop increases the peril for plants (and humans).

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  7. Your burgundy-red arrangement is stunning, Kris. The colors/textures are so pleasing.
    I really like the Rotheca, they do look like little butterflies!
    And lastly, LOVE that the artichoke bloomed - such a cool-looking flower.
    Hope the marine layer continues to cool your area, the rest of us seem to be baking this week... the PNW is downright shocking!

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    1. Yes, I think I'm more shocked about what's happening in the PNW than I'd have been if the same heat dome had settled over California. We're at least sort of conditioned to those extremes, miserable as they are.

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  8. That extreme heat north of you is simply nuts. No words. I really like your vessels this time...and the burgundy arrangement...so beautiful!

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    1. I agree that the situation in the PNW is crazy but I'm afraid that, like those of us to the south, we may have to learn to deal with more of these events in the future. As Anna at Flutter & Hum has argued, we should all be planting more trees!

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  9. Hi Kris, my favourite is the red vase, looking great, but that said they're all delightful. Your microclimate sounds pleasant, I hope you'll be spared any weather desasters. So pleased to get a glimpse of your garden as well today as it gives me an idea as to where all the treasures you pick come from. Stay cool and have a good week, Annette

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    1. I live on the "hot" east side of a peninsula, which benefits less from the cool breezes those on the west side enjoy but our temperatures are still much more pleasant than those in the inland areas of California experience. Right now, as we close in on the noon hour, we're socked in by a persistent marine layer, which is just fine with me even though there's no sun or blue sky to be seen :)

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  10. Oh I adore that first "smoky" arrangement, and of course anytime those green-flowered Lisianthus show up I swoon.

    We hit 116 yesterday. Ugh.

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    1. I'm sorry, Loree. I hope that was the worst of it and that temperatures are coming down today.

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  11. I especially like the restrained color of the first arrangement. It's elegant.

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  12. Great arrangements as always and glad to hear that you escaped the worst of the heatwave. Hope you guys get some much needed rain as well. Also thanks for including the Celsius equivalent of the temperatures, saves me having to convert :)

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    1. I'd hoped that the monsoonal conditions in the desert southwest might reach us along the coast this time but it now appears that isn't going to happen. However, the heavier than usual marine layer has actually funneled a small amount of water from the roof into my rain tanks. Every little bit helps!

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  13. As far as I remember, I haven't seen Rotheca myricoides before. What a beautiful and ornate bloom! According to the internet it's called Butterfly bush (it does look like a butterfly!), which is nothing like Buddleia davidii that I know to be called butterfly bush, and sadly, is considered an invasive species. Just goes to show why can't count on a common name.

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    1. Yes. I'm not particularly fond of common names (even if they're easier to pronounce). While I understand why garden centers and even botanic gardens use them, I find it very frustrating when they don't also provide their botanical names. When I received training to become a docent at my local botanic garden, I was actively discouraged from using plants' Latin names. I compromised by using both - and explaining the limitations of common names ;)

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  14. I really like the D. carota in the burgundy arrangement - to me it really stands out and makes the whole thing dramatic.

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    1. Daucus carota surprised me by being particularly easy to grow from seed, Jason. I just hope it doesn't become a self-seeding monster...

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  15. The artichoke flower is really pretty Kris. I love seeing your Osteospermums. Such delicate colours with that lavender blue tinge. They are sold as summer annuals here, but usually in bright gaudy pink or purple. The butterfly bush goes perfectly with it. Hope you get some rain and the heatwave doesn't hit your region.

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    1. Osterospermums are often sold as annuals here too, Cathy, although if given a chance to get established, they're short-lived perennials and some self-seed readily. The double-petaled varieties can be used as cut flowers because they don't close under lower light conditions and, thankfully, more and more of those cultivars are released each year (at least here).

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