It's been spring in all but name here since early February but now it's official! To make things even sweeter, Mother Nature provided us a touch of rain on the last day of astronomical winter, squeaking in with 0.13/inch (3.3mm) on Saturday night between 10pm and midnight. Admittedly, that's not a lot but even that paltry amount was sufficient to fill my 50-gallon rain tank. My larger tanks are no longer entirely empty either. A few weeks ago when rain was expected to arrive in the wee hours of the morning (but never materialized), I said I wasn't crazy enough to get up at 2am to supplement my rainwater collection by filling buckets from my rain chain; however, it seems I am crazy enough to put a raincoat over nightclothes to collect rainwater between 10pm and midnight.
I enjoyed collecting flowers in the fresh air on Sunday morning, thankfully completing that task before gusty winds returned. My first arrangement made use of the last of the pale greenish-yellow Hippeastrum 'Luna' stems to bloom.
|Top view: I love the Abelia/Linnaea and I plan to take a few cuttings in the hope of propagating it. The grower I bought it from in 2012 doesn't offer it anymore and I've never seen it anywhere else.|
|Clockwise from the upper left: Abelia/Linnaea floribunda, Acacia cognata 'Cousin Itt', Freesias in shades of blue and white, Hippeastrum 'Luna', and Lathyrus odoratus 'Navy'|
The huge blooms of Leucospermum 'Brandi' inspired my second arrangement.
|The Leucospermum set the stage for another sherbet-colored confection|
|Back view: I grew the salmon-colored Ranunculus from a tuber but have once again been disappointed by their performance. Of the 40 tubers I planted in late October, only a handful have sprouted despite my soaking them before planting as recommended.|
I threw together a third small arrangement as the kitchen island "needed" fresh flowers to replace the leftovers I'd saved from vases prepared in prior weeks.
|This vase contains stems of Antirrhinum majus, Coleonema album, a noID dwarf Cymbidium, and Freesia|
There's another small chance of rain next Monday but it's way to early to get excited about that prospect as most early projections tend to fade away. In the meantime, daytime temperatures are expected to soar into the mid-80s (29C) here by Wednesday. Hopefully, spring doesn't plan to prematurely give way to summer.
For more IAVOM creations, visit Cathy at Rambling in the Garden.
All material © 2012-2022 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party
Both vases are equally charming. The pale creamy yellow of Hippeastrum and Freesia is so complimentary to the cool blues and purples in the first vase. And then there is the delightful plethora shades of orange... irresistible.ReplyDelete
"...crazy enough to put a raincoat over nightclothes to collect rainwater between 10pm and midnight"! Good On You, as the folks down under say.
At least the rain wasn't coming down hard enough to get me soaked on this occasion ;) Still, I wish there'd been more of it.Delete
Happy Spring and yay for some rain for you. I could almost smell those freesias!ReplyDelete
That first arrangement IS nicely scented with the Freesia, sweet peas and even the Abelia contributing to make a pleasant perfume.Delete
I can see why you would be collecting water like this when you get so little of it! Where does yourtank cllect the water from - is ir your roof? It's astonishing to think you can fill it from just 0.13" of rain! Your garden must have felt wonderfully refreshed after that shower �� YOur first vase with the blues and white is particularly effective, and the vase itself is perfect for the bloomsReplyDelete
Yes, all 3 of my tanks collect water from roof surfaces via a gutter system, as does the rain chain (which feeds the water I don't manage to catch down onto the back slope). Unfortunately, the largest tank is attached to the smallest roof surface (the back half of our detached garage) but that couldn't be helped. None of the tanks are especially attractive so we've placed them in the least visible spots available. The 50-gallon tank feeds off one of the largest roof areas, as does the rain chain. I should probably get myself a large rubber trash can to place the chain into when a storm threatens...Delete
I am in love with Luna and the Freesias! Gorgeous combination. I woke up last night trying to decide if I was hearing wind or rain (wind) Fingers crossed you get precip!ReplyDelete
I hope you get some good rain soon, Amelia. I was convinced we weren't going to get any rain on Saturday - the clouds didn't look very promising and the forecasters kept dropping the probability. I thought I was imagining rain on the roof when I first heard it! We're currently seeing another 37% chance of more rain in the wee hours of the morning next Monday but, even when the probability is above 80%, storms frequently manage to pass us by :(Delete
Your purple abelia had me intrigued Kris, what a lovely colour, especially paired with Hippeastrum ‘Luna’.ReplyDelete
Although it does share similar features to Linnaea floribunda, I believe it is a closer match to a plant listed on the Annie’s Annuals website as Abelia ‘Chiapas’. It’s not in their current catalogue, but if you google that name, it’s the first entry that comes up. What do you think?
I think you've definitively nailed the Abelia, Horticat! I bought the plant from Annie's by mail order in January 2012. If they attached 'Chiapas' to the description, I failed to record it. I checked Annie's site for discontinued Abelias last week when I prepared my Bloom Day post but they didn't show it. Thanks! I'll add the name to my plant roster now rather than trusting myself to remember it next spring.Delete
Oh good! Annie’s looks like such a great nursery. So many interesting plants and good information- I browse their website often. It’s a bit too far from Australia for an in-person visit, but maybe one day!Delete
Annie's is my go-to mail order nursery. I can only imagine what the cost would be to ship plants to Australia, though, if they even shipped overseas, which I don't think they do ;) Even ordering from a nursery on the east coast of the US here can cost a fortune.Delete
I love your purple and yellow vase, Kris. Totally smitten with the second one with its great variety of flowers and interesting design. Really nice.ReplyDelete
I just wrote a whole long comment and Blogger lost it, grrr. At any rate... glad for the rain, and the beauty of your arrangements! xReplyDelete
Sorry about the comment problem, Eliza. I just checked back at your last post and noticed that your snowdrop photo is now visible as you intended in my Chromium browser. I'm having my own issues with the last Linux update of Chromium on my end - I now have to put my blog pages and collages together in Firefox as Chromium currently refuses to load photos properly.Delete
What we do for our gardens...glad there was some rain. Luna is gorgeous against those purples. And the oranges and coral lift my spirits.ReplyDelete
Thanks Donna. I hope spring colors arrive in your garden soon!Delete
I got a new Abelia plant by pinning a stem down into the soil. This does not work all that frequently, but it sure is easy.ReplyDelete
Those purples all together are delicious.
Thanks for the tip, HB! I haven't tried propagation by layering but that may be worth a try, providing I can find the right stems closer to soil level - the Abelia has merged with a trailing Lantana and its base isn't readily visible.Delete
The things we gardeners do for our plants! I was out at midnight last week fleecing plants in the greenhouse, when temperatures dropped rather lower than I'd seen predicted. Glad you managed to grab some rain at least.ReplyDelete
I adore all three vases, but especially love the colours of the first. I've not seen a purple abelia before. It's lovely!
I should keep the challenges faced by gardeners in colder climates than mine in mind - getting soaked at intervals isn't nearly as bad as dealing with freezing temperatures!Delete
Sweet peas in March?! I wonder how long your season for them is? Both lovely vases, but I do have a weakness for anything peachy, so the second is my favourite today. Good luck with the rain catching if you do get any more rain. I think the craziest thing I have done is hold up a newly planted tree in a thunder storm… not a clever thing to do but we both survived!ReplyDelete
I think you have me beat in the "what we'll do for our gardens" category, Cathy! Sweet peas are cool season flowers here. Conventional wisdom maintains that the seeds should be sown in September for early spring bloom. How long they'll hold up once they start blooming isn't entirely predictable. I usually pull mine when the foliage gets badly mildewed, which is generally the result of marine layer dampness followed by dry heat. We haven't had much of a morning marine layer of late so perhaps they'll do better this year but my off-hand guess is that summer-level heat will burn them up sometime in May.Delete